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Product Type: Toys

 


2003 Award
Tree House
(Brio $80 Score:) If you have a child who fancies fairies, this tree house with swinging ladder and working winch will be totally magical. We recommend bringing home some fabric Beneath the Leaf Dolls (Manhattan Toy $10 each) that are just the right scale, or 6" Faeries puppets (Folkmanis $10 each). Manhattan Toy (800) 541-1345/Folkmanis (800) 654-8922.

Age: Preschool,Early School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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2002 Award
Neon and Glow-in-the-Dark Magic Power Balls
(Action Products $10 Score:) The latest variation of one of our favorite fast activity kits. Still one of the best play-date kits around! A little science here with mixing crystals and water to change them into a solid, bounceable material in just three minutes. 6 & up.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2003 Award
Blopens Magic Color Change Kit
(Color Workshop $14.99 Score:) Kids get airbrush effects with the ten Blopens plus a Secret Writer color changer marker, stencils, and 3-D glasses that make drawings look awesome! 5 & up.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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2003 Award
Tie Dye Kit
(Creativity for Kids $19.95 Score:) Recently reintroduced, this refreshed kit is still a clever twist on a popular craft. Here's what we wrote back in 2003. Under the heading, "What will they think of next?" here's the latest in tie-dye convenience. The dye is in the string that you use with your own tee-shirts or pillowcases. A good outdoor craft project. Our tester reported, "Don't use the same water twice, it comes out muddy."

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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2003 Award
Design Studio
(Pamela Drake $18 Score:) Best known for its line of Woodkins, which you simply dress by lifting the frame and placing a piece of fabric on the cut-out figure, this company's new line is meant for older girls. They can use the glitzy fabrics, cut-out patterns, and accessories to create their own unique designs. 8 & up.

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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2003 Award
Mystix
(Fashion Angels Enterprises $16 Score:) This bead kit with semi-precious stones makes some mighty fine looking jewelry for older girls! Also special, the Bling Bling kit($16 ) with very fashionable and attractive metal and glass beads. Still top rated for younger beaders, Alphabet Suite ($23.99 four ) creates personalized bracelets. 8 & up.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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2003 Award
Paint Pail Beads
(Fashion Angels Enterprises $15 Score:) New and special this bead kit makes bracelets with round wooden beads that you paint with toothpicks! Comes with enough material for a play date that company will enjoy doing and wearing home! 8 & up.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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Hershey's Chocolate Magic Maker
(Spinmaster $14.99 Score:) As confirmed chocoholics we hoped this would be a winner. It melts chocolate chips without burning hands, but it's hard to extrude chocolate into the molds without making blobs, and is next to impossible to open for cleaning.8& up.

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: .

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Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine
(Hasbro $9.99 Score:) In the battle of the Snow Cone our 4th grade testers were initially attracted to Snoopy, but they reported that the directions were not as clear and it is harder to work than some of the others in the market.

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

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2003 Award
Look-Alikes Playground
(Briarpatch $5.99 Score:) (Briarpatch $5.99 four ) Joan Steiner's wonderful scenes of everyday life are a perfect fit for puzzles (ha!). Sixty-three pieces make up this inventive playground, including a tambourine for a sandbox and a shoehorn for a slide! Also fun, Look-Alikes Harbor. 8 & up. Or try Look-Alikes Soda Shop with 500 pieces. They say 7 & up, we say a good family project!

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2003.

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