Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years
Categories: Dolls and Huggables

 


2012 Award
Cinderella Deluxe Doll Gift Set
(Disney $79.99 Score:)

A wowee of a doll set with six--count them- -all six of the main characters done up in a splendid carrying case package. There is a 12-inch Cinderella, of course, in a ball gown, but her cinder dress, an extra gown, plus a dress form. Ready for playing out the story (or new ones) is the rest of the cast all dressed in their satiny gowns. Her wicked looking stepmother, two very ugly sisters, the prince, and her sear fairy godmother. The dolls can be posed with jointed legs and arms, though their little feet will not let them stand on their own. All together this is a pricey but special gift for pretend play-not merely for display. Marked 3 & up, this makes more sense for 5 & up.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
American Girl Caroline Abbott, War of 1812
(American Girl $105 Score:)

Newest addition in the historical doll and book collection, Caroline Abbott lived during the time of the second American War of Independence, the War of 1812. Caroline, a lovely blonde 18" doll has blue eyes and comes dressed in a long pink dress, pantaloons, and pink shoes. She is the daughter of a shipbuilder and lives in Sackets Harbor, New York. When her father is captured by the British, Caroline has to try to live up to a promise she gave her father to prove her steadiness and courage. Her dream is to captain her own ship one day. Kathleen Ernst has authored six books about this brave young girl. Meet Caroline is the first and comes with the doll. No doubt there will be a sailing boat, craft kits, historically accurate clothes, and other accessories. We know a lot of little ones can't wait for this kind of doll, but the story part and the details are really most appropriate for the school years girl.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2012.

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2012 Award
Blabla Luigi Frog
(blabla kids $48 Score:)

Soft and huggable, Luigi is a green frog with big eyes and a pencil thin curled mustachio. He wears long brown pants with suspenders and a white shirt. Every detail of this adorable frog is knitted. Like other dolls in the line it is also available in a 12-inch size. If you fancy a girl frog, consider Lilipop, in a paler shade of green ith ballet slippers and a pink yarn tutu.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Awards
Huggalo Collection
(Huggalo $19.95 Score:)

Huggalos are soft huggable dolls with a dedicated place on their chest for placing a photo of someone special. There's Doodle Dude (made of canvas and intended to be written on), Camo Joe (done in green fleece camaflouge), Huggsley (our favorite - he comes with a cape and is clearly the super hero of the line), and Camo Flo (same idea as Camo Joe but done in pink).  We think this collection will have an audience with not only the preschool set--but tweens/teens.  The line has a sense of humor and whimsy to it that will likely have wide appeal.

SNAP: Having a photo of a family member can be a comfort take-along when going out into the world. This one is less young looking than most and a little more amusing.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Awards
Blabla Giant Pumpkin
(blabla kids $196 Score:)

Three feet tall and ready to listen, dance, and play pretend, Pumpkin is dressed in an adorable striped dress. She has rosy cheeks, and reddish hair. Oversized dolls like this one become more than decorations in a child's room. They often become the play companion of tea parties, storytime, and bedtime, too. Blabla makes a number of giant size dolls. This is the most humanoid of the group and a smaller version of the doll is also available.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012.

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2012 Award
Tooth Treasure Super Hero
(North American Bear Co. $25 Score:)

Oh, what a night-when the tooth fairy comes on its magic mission! This 9-inch square pillow has a pocket for leaving a note for the tooth fairy and a felt pocket to tuck the lost tooth into. The little super hero is detachable from its yellow cape and used as a finger puppet. There is a girl version of this with Princess finger puppet and pastel look. Usually tooth treasures will not be needed before 5-6.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Barbie Dolls of the World, Australia
(Mattel $29.99 Score:)

Collecting dolls of other lands is a passion that frequently begins in the later school years. Girls may feel "too old" to play with dolls but still like having them in their rooms. The current Australian and Irish dolls are fairly reasonably priced for entry level collectors. For this age group they may also spark an interest in finding out more about their doll's country and customs. Mattel has a website with map and games and information dedicated to this collection. Each doll comes with a passport and display stand and is dressed in clothes or costumes that reflect the traditional or modern dress. Each doll also has a related animal. The Australian doll wears a safari outfit and has a koala bear.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Award
Monster High Dead Tired Lagoona Blue Doll and Hydration Station Playset
(Mattel $44.99 Score:)

We have to admit when we first saw this collection, we thought it was the product of young toy designers having their way with making an edgy line of dolls that would really appeal to the older doll collector. We were wrong. The line has captured the attention of older school aged/tweens. It makes sense given the "twilightization" of america's pop culture at the moment. The dolls are all related to monsters we know and love.  There is Frankie Stein, Holt Hyde, Ghoulia Yelps, Abbey Bominable, Clawdeen Wolf, Cleo de Nile (you know the daughter of the Mummy). You get the idea. Each doll has a backstory and there own issues in high school. For example, Cleo de Nile is described as: "a princess but she's not a mean ghoul. This has allowed her to establish genuine relationships with fellow students who can 'Let Cleo be Cleo' even when 'her imperial bossiness' forgets that at Monster High she's just one of the ghouls." 

Our toy testers really loved the Hydration Bed set that comes with Lagoona.  Some will find this line ridiculous, after listening to our testers we know that they like the silliness of it all. While each of the dolls are dressed in over-the-top outfits, the focus is not on their sexuality but on their character. We like that! We also were thrilled that there were boy dolls in this collection as well.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Award
Fijit
(Mattel $49.99 Score:)

We were really taken by Fijits at toy fair. They have an interesting and pleasing squishy feel to them (there are three different colors-with different names for each) when you poke them.  It feels the way we think the Pillsbury Dough Boy would feel if you were able to poke him.  That tactile aspect of this toy sets it apart from the recent version of hard plastic interactive robots. Fijit has a fun repetoire of tricks. She can tell jokes, invite your child to dance (either to her own music or your child's). She's programmed to say 150 different things. On the downside, she doesn't always understand your voice commands--this can be frustrating. She also is pretty loud (no volume control) and she requires 5 AA batteries.

That said our testers really liked her corny jokes and how she bops to the music. Pure novelty.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Awards
Journey Girls Wheel Chair and Crutches
(Toys R Us $24.99 Score:)

Scaled for Kelsey and other 18" dolls in the Journey Girls collection, this is a terrific foldable wheel chair with fabric seat and a pair of crutches as well as a plaster foot cast, an arm cast, ice pack and an elastic bandage. The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Although the Journey Girls line is all about travelling and experiencing different places and cultures around the world, this foldable wheel chair with crutches and other props happens to be priced right! For kids with physical challenges it will be a welcome accessory for their dolls and dramatic play.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2011.

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