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Product Type: Toys
Age: Late Elementary School Years

 


2007 Award
JellLoopdeLoops Sparkle Jelly Jewelry Kit
(Fashion Angels Enterprises $14.99 Score:) Our testers really enjoyed this kit with 48' of glitter tubing so that crafters can make 36 bracelets and 20 rings. One parent noted: “love the creativity factor and including the pliers was an excellent idea”, but thought the seed beads were too tiny to manage. 8 & up. (800) 492-3237.

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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2008 Award
Kid Tough Digital Camera
(Fisher-Price $69.95 Score:)

This was a Platinum winner in 2007. What has changed? It is now waterproof-not a bad idea when you think of how often cameras are taken along to the beach or pool. Technically, this is not a 2009 winner, but it is worth considering. Designed for beginners, this digital camera works surprisingly easily. There is a two-eye view finder as well as a small but adequate screen. It’s easy to use with chunky handgrips and big button. Comes with built-in flash, runs on four AA batteries, and you can add a card for extra memory. Compatible with Mac or PC. They say 3 & up, we’d say more like 6 & up. Available in pink or blue. (800) 432-5437.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2007 Award
Combo King
(Gamewright $14.99 Score:)

Our testing family thought this was a kinder, friendlier form of Yahtzee. The cards you draw determine what kind of roll you need to get in order to win the round (e.g., three 5s, two 3s). Some dice challenges invite everyone to compete (e.g, first person to roll a four wins). Not difficult to learn and fun to play. You win chips for winning the rounds (so there is a poker-like element to the game as well); first player to make all their combos is the Combo King. 8 & up but you’ll need an adult.

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

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2007 Award
Fuddy Duddy
(Let's Play Games $6.99 Score:) Quick and easy, players must collect a run of one color, 1 to 4, or a run of “duds” that have no color. 8 & up. (856) 988-1980.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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2007 Awards
Scratch Art Light Catcher Fun Kits
(Scratch-Art Co. $2.99 Score:)

Kids scratch away the black paint to give the open spaces a stained glass look when the finished product is hung on a window (themes include birds, flowers, and a sailboat). Quick, pleasing projects that are a good party favor/activity. Also new, Scratch Magic Stickers ($5.99 ) comes in 20 animal shapes. For a bigger kit, Draw & Learn Deluxe Kit ($16.99 ) has over 50 stencil shapes of dinosaurs, underwater, jungle, and outer space themes. This just might attract boys in particular who often need to develop the fine motor skills of holding a pencil—without the challenge of writing letters.


Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2007. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2007 Award
Weaving Fashion Weaving Loom
(Alex $18 Score:)

Cleverly packaged with very current chunky, fluffy yarn, this kit gives weaving an updated look. Our testers gave high ratings to both this kit and the Giant Weaving Loom ($29.99 4). Must be threaded, but easy to use. 


Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2007 Award
Mattel Hot Wheels ESS Radar Gun
(Mattel $24.99 Score:)

This really works! We tracked cars (we don’t recommend this to kids—but we couldn’t help ourselves), baseball pitches, and bicycles going by. Fun for outdoor play. (800) 542-8697. Our testers also tried the Discovery Speed Detector ($39.95 ) and gave it strong reviews as well. In a head-to-head competition, the Mattel gun is more sensitive and responds better than the Discovery version, which takes more finesse to work. That said, both did well with our kid testers. Both 8 & up. These toys have been discontinued.


Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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2007 Award
Lonpos
(Mic O Mic Americas, Inc. $16.99 Score:) Imagine a puzzle with 566 combinations that fits in a box that is only 3" x 5.5"! A brain teaser game with multicolored balls, connected in various forms, that are a challenge to connect into many patterns. 10 & up. (877) 642-6642.

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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2007 Award
American Girl Jess
(American Girl $87 Score:) Jess, is this year's Girl of the Year from American Girl's contemporary collection of dolls. She's an Amerasian, 18" tall with dark brown eyes and her hair comes in loose braids. Her dad is Irish American and her mom is Japanese American. While the book points out that they come from different backgrounds, they both love archeology. Her family goes to Belize so the accessories that you can also add include a passport, a camera and a kayak.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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2007 Award
Scrabble Premier Edition
(Restoration Hardware $149 Score:) If Scrabble is a family favorite, you may want to bring home this deluxe set that comes in a handsome mahogany-finished case with storage below the board and a lazy-Susan platform for easy viewing. The board is approximately 17" x 16" wide and comes with a timer, rulebook, scoreboard and pencil. We'd also recommend the Scrabble Electronic Dictionary ($55) for those heated word challenges!

Age: Later School Years. Award Year: 2007.

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