Amy Coe Sampson Squeaker

(North American Bear $12.00) Sampson the 8” elephant with a patch that says “little one” on its chest, has a squeaker inside that will grab baby’s attention if you are playing tracking games. It’s machine washable and has easy to grab limbs for older babies to clutch. All Ages. Ages: Infants Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase this product on Amazon

Amy Coe Sam and Sampson Elephant Squeaker

(North American Bear $12-25) Sam, a 15-inch elephant, is made of soft two-tone grey knit and stitched with yellow threads. He has floppy fabric ears and under stuffed arms and legs—all the better for toddlers to grab and drag. Or consider Sam’s little buddy, Sampson the 8” elephant with a patch that says “little one” on its chest and has a squeaker inside that will grab baby’s attention if you are playing tracking games. It’s machine washable and has easy to grab limbs for older babies to clutch. All Ages. Ages: Infants, Toddlers, Preschoolers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

Amy Coe Coco Bear

(North American Bear $28) Made of soft knitted fabric this delicious 20” pink bear has totally grab-able arms and legs and has a “coolest kid ever” patch sewn on its chest. Designed by Amy Cole, this is machine washable, has stitched features and is safe for all ages. We know toddlers will especially like the bigness of this huggable but lightweight doll. This also comes black. Amazon says it’s ‘plush” but the fabric is not furry, it’s more like felt, with no shedding threads. All Ages Ages: Infants, Toddlers, Preschoolers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

Neat-Oh! Zip Bin, Transforming Toy Box Space Case

(Neat-Oh! $24.99) More than just a storage box with lid, this one zips open and transforms into a play setting, a Starship hangar, for acting out adventures in a far, far galaxy. It’s 12.4 x 9.8 x 7.3 inches and designed to fit most modular storage units. Made of durable wipe-able fabric with graphics to please the avid Star Wars fan and collector. 3 & up. Ages: Preschoolers, Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

WobbleWorks 3Doodler Start

(WobbleWorks $49 and up) As our tester put it, this is like a glue gun only it’s loaded with plastic rods that you use with stencils AND there are no hot parts to worry over. The plastic comes out like soft string and hardens quickly. The Super Mega Pen set ($99) we tested kit comes with the pen, eight different color packs of plastic, and a project book for making figures, charms, and other decorative items. The doodler needs to be charged and then it can be used without being plugged in. Our eleven-year old tester thought this was the best toy ever! The Essential Pen set ($49) has only two packs of plastic and USB, pen, and instruction book. We looked at several products in this new catego

Mo Willems’ Elephant and Piggie Finger Puppets

(Yottoy Productions $13) Fans of Mo Willems' Elephant and Piggie books will love telling their own adventure stories or retelling the ones they have heard with these tiny finger puppets. Ages: Preschoolers, Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

eeBoo Sequences

(eeBoo $16.00) Sequences goes a step further than eeBoo’s Before and After Activity Set. With sixteen sets of three cardboard tiles, players must put them in order with a beginning, middle and end and then tell a story about the events shown. All the colorful sets have matching color backgrounds and borders to serve as a visual cue. Playing around with sequences calls for logical thinking, problem solving and using visual cues to “read” a story. Endearing and lively images by illustrator Saxton Freymann inspire storytelling skills. These are all important for children before they can even read words on a page. Being able to tell a story, to tell it in ones own words provides the underpinning

eeBoo Mystery in the Forest, 42 Piece Puzzles

(eeBoo $8.00) Artist Melissa Sweet has created Mystery in the Forest, a picture book scene with a castle, a queen, and fanciful children and creatures. It has 42 good-sized pieces that will turn into a big 11” X 15” picture with lots to look at and talk about together. Also in the same collection Animals at Work, a 42-piece puzzle featuring a construction site with animals running the cement mixer, crane, and an excavator. Also special a Daniel Kirk’s Firetruck, a realistic street scene with a big hook and ladder truck and a multicultural cast including an African American female officer directing traffic, a delivery man with boxes, a dogwalker, firefighters, construction workers, a father r

Leap Frog Fridge Numbers

(Leap Frog $19.99) A magnetic number set that talks and sings and invites beginners to find matches, colors and count from 1-10. It has many kinds of food to count, know and name. It’s a playful way to learn the names of numerals, food, and colors that are all built into the interactions. This is an updated version of a classic talking toy that will keep kids occupied wherever you have a metal door that these will adhere to. These concepts are not learned all at once, so they have a long-playing life. They say 2 & up, we’d say more like 3’s and up. Ages: Preschoolers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

eeBoo Paper Fans

(eeBoo $5.00 each) If you are looking for party favors for a special birthday, for an accessory for pretend, or a stocking stuffer, these charming paper fans will fill the bill. Choose one with what looks like embroidered satin stitched flowers or one with butterflies or tall peacock feathers. Each package comes with a small history of fans and how they have been used through the ages. Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

eeBoo Hue Do You Love? Baby Thistle Dog

(eeBoo $13.00 each) A new collection of velvety plush dolls, with safe stitch features, grab-able arms, ears, or wings; each is soft and small enough (approx. 3" X 7") for toddlers to clutch and enjoy. Though they are not very big, they have beanie filled bottoms, so they can sit up. Baby Thistle Dog is lavender with crinkles in the ears and a rattle sound when you shake it. Papaya Bunny is the color of ripe papaya fruit with green eyes and ribbon and a stitched on carrot in its pocket. Also special, Cerulean Owl, in a beautiful shade of blue with crinkle wings and a three-prong tail feather and a Pink Smoothie Cat with a long tail to grab. Unlike so many dolls, these are machine washable—a

eeBoo Write and Draw notebooks

(eeBoo $14.00) Early school aged kids, tweens and teens love to keep journals, diaries and pictures. These new Write and Draw sets of 8” x 6” notebooks are very special. One is lined for writing and the other is blank for drawing or pasting in pictures. Pair a set of notebooks with colored pencils packaged to match. Choose the Victorian Birds and Flowers notebooks ($14) with a dozen bright fluorescent pencils ($7.50) or metallic pencils ($7.50)in matching packaging. Or choose the Doves and Ferns Write and Draw set or the striking metallic gold and silver set called Silhouette Write and Draw. We also love the cheerful look of the Butterflies and Flowers Write & Draw books paired with a matchi

eeBoo Watercolor Tins

(eeBoo $12.99 a set) Painting with watercolors is a challenge, but these sets with a brush and 12 cakes of intense colors are good for beginning exploration of color blending and experimenting with light and darker tones. Choose tins with scenes from In the Sea, Mushrooms, or as shown above, Butterflies by Monika Forsberg. Add a matching sketchbook ($6). Together they makes a charming gift. Ages: Early School, Tweens Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

eeBoo Melissa Sweet 24 Watercolor Pencil Tin

(eeBoo $17.00) Melissa Sweet’s charming illustrations of a robin blue eggs in a nest with two birds perched on branches is sure to inspire young artists to try their creative ideas. Bring home a tin with 24 colored pencils that can be used for drawing and then magically be turned into paintings with a wet brush. Bring these home with a matching sketchbook($6). A perfect gift for your creative tween or teen. Also available a tin of 24 color pencils ($17 non-watercolor) designed with a pair of Peacocks by Monika Forsberg with a matching sketchbook ($6) Ages: Early School, Tweens Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

My First Bananagrams

(Bananagrams $14.99) Designed for younger kids and packed in a green fabric banana shaped bag, this is a wonderfully playful learning tool for beginners. The set includes 80 single letter tiles, plus combo letter tiles such as sh, wh, ea, th, an, ee and more. Use them for making word families, blends, and vowel combos. These larger than usual Bananagram tiles are all lower case and have colorful backgrounds. It’s not one game, but many suggested ways to use the tiles with preschoolers and early school age children. For preschoolers they suggest matching letters, sorting them by color, spelling their names, and alphabetical order, which by the way, is a very tall order for preschoolers, who m

Mega Bloks American Girl Grace's 2-in-1 Buildable Home

(Mattel $69.99) Girls have a choice of building Grace’s 2 story home with living room, kitchen, and garden or her Patisserie, her fancy bakery with all the props plus a slumber party bedroom with a rooftop area. The set comes with three figures, Grace, Maddie and Ella and Bonbon, the French bulldog. It also includes furnishings, and instructions. Our 11-year old tester, an American Girl fan was excited to have a building set related to these characters and liked the idea of the 2-in-1 possibilities that would mean the toy could be used in new ways. An experienced LEGO builder, her enthusiastic review did mention that the pieces were harder to put together than LEGOs, but that said, she felt

Journey Girls Holiday Doll for 2016

(Toys R Us $49.99) A true show stopper, Journey Girl Holiday Doll for 2016 is done up in a stunning ball gown of silver encrusted with sparkling sequins. On her shoulders she has a lush white furry stole (faux for sure) and she comes with a glittery evening bag. An 18” beauty, she has jeweled clip in her hair, glittery earrings, and is available as a girl (with a hint) of color with dark hair or as a Caucasian blonde. Since the Journey Girls are visiting New York this year, her box is marked New York, making her a striking souvenir for young (and old) visitors. Available exclusively at Toys R Us. 6 & up. Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016

Journey Girl Wheel Chair & Accessory

(Toy R Us $29.99) We’ve told readers about this wheel chair before. It’s well made and fits the 18” Journey Girl. This season it’s been refreshed and done up in pink. It comes with a plastic pink cast for the doll’s leg and one for her arm. This does not include the dolls shown. Available exclusively at Toys R Us. Ages: Early School, Special Needs Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016

Journey Girls Pet Vet Care Kit

(Toys R Us $14.99) Journey Girl, Dana will no doubt want this Pet Vet Care kit. It includes, a scale, a doll size stethoscope, clipboard and pencil for making notes, a cushion, doggie dish and bones, ice bag, hypodermic shot, pill bottle and bandages for the paws. This does not include the stuffed doggie or doll pictured. Available exclusively at Toys R Us. Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016

North American Bear Mosie Puppy

(North American Bear $25.00) A 14-inch black and white knit puppy with plenty of eye catching pattern for newborns to focus on. Mosie has all stitched features and no doo-dads for safe playing. Also a companion 8” squeaker, Moe ($12) is covered in black and white star pattern that wears a label saying Future Rock Star. Both are machine washable. Ages: Infants, Toddlers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Award 2016 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

Featured Reviews
Recent Reviews
Archive
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square

© 2016 by Oppenheim Toy Portfolio | The Independent Guide to Children's Media

 

Products reviewed by the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio are provided by the manufacturer at their cost. The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio does not require or accept fees for reviewing products.