Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Vehicles

 


2011 Award
Chuggington Wooden Railway Chug Wash
(Learning Curve International $39.99 Score:)

A train wash...a first in train land!  Push the lever to disperse the imaginary water and then send them through the buffers and dryers. Having written about many accessories over the years, this one certainly wins for being unique. Other interesting accessories in this line: Chuggington Wooden Railway Crossing Fuel Depot ($39.99) Pull either of the two levers and you can watch the "fuel" go down as you refuel your train. There is also a water tank that works the same way. The dial that shows how much fuel you have left makes a clicking sound--but no other lights or sounds here; and Chuggington Wooden Railway Crossing Platform with Vee ($39.99) The crossingplatform features the character Vee and has some lights and sounds when youpush the roof or push through the gates. You can mix this add-on with other sets--often a way to renew interest!

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

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2011 Award
Chuggington Wooden Railway Trainee Roundhouse Set
(Learning Curve International $119.99 Score:)

The middle sized set in this new series of trains from the folks that brought you Thomas the Tank. The set comes with 32 pieces of wooden track with plastic/wooden accessories. The set comes with two trains (Koko & Brewster) and a roundhouse that can hold three engines. One of the nice features of this series is that the accessories come apart so that they can be used in more than one way. For example in this set, the clock tower can stack on top of the roundhouse or be removed and used as a small tunnel elsewhere. Our testers have generally loved these sets but have noted that the tracks do not stay connected as well as the Thomas sets (which is odd since they're made by the same company!).

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

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2011 Award
Chuggington Wooden Railway Double-Decker Roundhouse with Elevated Turntable
(Learning Curve International $99.99 Score:)

Here's the "big" accessory for this new line of trains based on the show Chuggington. The roundhouse  can either be used stacked to provide an unusual two-story structure. It comes with a elevated turntable
in order to get the trains up and down from the second story (pretty cool). Or you can take the two halves of the roundhouse and use them to create a circle around your track. What we really love is that you can ascending pieces to add trains to the second story. There's something very cool about building height in train settings. Our tester did note that it seems more "plastic" than Thomas--but the amazing functionality of this prop outweighed all of those esthetic concerns. 


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

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2011 Award
Chuggington Wooden Railway Over and Under Starter Set
(Learning Curve International $49.99 Score:)

Move over Thomas! There's a new train in town. Fans of the Chuggington series will enjoy this starter set. Comes with 22 pieces -including two trains (Wilson & Koko). One of our testers loved that the set came with two trains - just right for her two children ("no fighting").  What we liked about this set is that you
can make an elevated figure 8 with a clock tower in the center or take the tower apart and now you have two tunnels. Can be used with other wooden sets in this line and other wooden sets you may already have. All of our testing families noted that the tracks do not stay together as well as the Thomas tracks--something we also found - which is all the more curious given that these sets are made by the same company that makes Thomas!  Take a look at the accessories in these series.

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

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2010 Award
Krazy Kars Light Up Marble Racers
(Skullduggery $7.99 Score:)

Kids can customize their own see-though racers with the stick-on decals. Give them a shake and the "marble" in the center of the vehicle lights up. These will make good party favors or stocking stuffers or a less than costly way to exit the toy store with a small purchase. 3 & up.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Rubbabu Fireman Rubba Engine
(Rubbabu $24.99 Score:)

The wheels really roll on this beginners fire engine. It's made of a rubbery material that is flocked with soft red texture and has a black ladder that bounces along on top. This is a toddler toy with not a lot of details. 1 & up. The company makes a variety of small vehicles in bright colors. We especially like the Mascot Cars ($14.95) with a handle built into the body of the car. It's perfect for crawlers and kids who are still close to the ground.
The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.


Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2010.

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2010 Award
Hot Wheels Impavido ZipBin Race Case
(Neat-Oh $20 Score:)

A red backpack that opens to a small track and storage container for hot wheels. It comes with just one vehicle.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Hot Wheels ZipBin Wheelie Backpack
(Neat-Oh $20 Score:)

Just right for taking along to a play date or Gram's. This backpack opens to a play setting for drag racing your best cars. Shaped like a wheel it transforms to a working side-by-side race track for dramatic play fun. There's a garage area, a winner's circle and built-in parking. On line it says that it comes with two sturdy die cast sports cars, but in fact the toy we tested came with just one vehicle. There are three holders on each side of the drag racing track. Or you can fit as many as 100 loose vehicles in this as a storage bag. Also fun, the HotWheels ZipBin Skull ($20) Shaped like a ramp for race cars to zoom down, this opens into a track and also stores vehicles. It comes with just one car.   3 & up.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements.  We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Little Tikes Monster Dirt Diggers
(Little Tikes $29.99 Score:)

For the beach or sandbox, this big yellow plastic digger has an articulated cab, big wheels, and a spring action working 12" long crane that can scoop, lift, and release loads. The latter rotates a full 360 degrees. The truck bed tilts sideways to dump loads of sand or pebbles or whatever. There's a construction worker driver who can sit in the cab up front or in the seat that operates the claw. Itís bulky, but lightweight enough to take along to the beach or park. It can also be used indoors for dramatic play and loading up blocks or other heavy lifting. This makes a not too pricey but big looking birthday or holiday gift that will get miles of use. 3 & up.
The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Toy Story 3 Spiral Speedway
(Fisher-Price $19.99 Score:)

Buzz and Lotso go racing down the two spiral tracks side by side. Push the starter gate and hear the motors roar. The original spiral speedway toy was a winner with toddlers in a previous format without a movie connection. We don't think toddlers are going to care about the Toy Story 3 connection, but they will probably like the repetition of the action. 2 & up.
The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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