Sassy Whirling Waterfall

(Sassy $9.99) We showed you this toy as part of a set. It's also available as a stand alone and good fun for under ten dollars. This is one bath toy that can double as a tabletop toy, as well. With a sturdy suction cup it attaches to tub or table and a swipe of a hand sends the many little colorful cups spinning. Standing in the tub, water will help power the motion and spill as the cups reach the top. Standing on a table, the rainbow of colors will blur as it turns. 6 months and up. Ages: Infants, Toddlers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award 2019 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

Sassy Sensory Activity Panels

(Sassy $14.99) Cleverly designed panels with high contrast images on one side and touchy-feely panels on the back, these four fabric panels can be used as a kind of fabric book. But it works best when the panels are taken apart. Separate the Velcro edging and explore the panels one at a time for lap time play. For tummy time, connect two panels can stand up for baby’s visual stimulation. There’s a panda with big eyes, that will attract baby’s interest; a squared target, and two other black and white images. On the reverse sides of the panels are a mirror, a cloud graphic with a rainbow ribbons to touch, a lift-up peek-a-boo leaf hiding a ladybug, and a silky blue ruffled panel with crinkle s

Sassy Rain Shower Bath Ball

(Sassy $8.99) Not only is this a fun bath toy with multiple knobs that sprinkle, spin, drip and pour, it can be played with as a ball or spilt apart and enjoyed in new ways. This kind of experimenting builds on little children’s natural curiosity about real things and how they work—in this case, it’s all about the nature of water and what it does and what they can do with it. Sassy has also managed to design a bath toy that will not hold dirty water, one that comes apart and goes in the dishwasher. 6 months and up. Ages: Infants, Toddlers Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award 2019 Click here to purchase the product from Amazon.com

eeBoo Toolbox Memory and Matching Game

(eeBoo $9.99) A set of memory cards for knowing and naming all the typical tools found on a workbench. Playing around with these images might interest some kids who would otherwise not be willing to work at matching and memory skills in a typical concentration game. This includes everything from a nail, hammer, wrench, drill and vise to a funnel, drill, c-clamp and more. Marked 3 and up, but this is more like a game for 5s and up. Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award 2019

Arcade Coder

(Tech Will Save Us $96 on Kickstarter; $159 thereafter) We’ve seen a slew of coding toys this season and many of them involve robots that will appeal to younger techies. This is quite a departure. Although it looks like a futuristic light peg board, it's really a platform for learning how to code, working with an iOS app. Kids learn to program games using guided lessons. Several games come pre configured, but can be customized as kids learn the interface and how to make changes. After that introduction kids progress to building their own games. Arcade Coder makes a good parent child activity with many opportunities to connect with kids in playful but problem-solving ways. Labeled for 6+, w

Lego Downtown Fire Brigade

(Lego $99.99) Top of the line, firefighting here! Downtown Fire Brigade set, with 943 pieces, features a detailed fire ladder truck with working light and sound brick, a neat swivel ladder and fire hose with a pump with ‘water jet’ function. There's also a 3-level building with roof, construction area with fence, falling lamppost and a must have, porta-toilet with removable top and front. For getting to the top and bottom of everything, there's a free-standing crane with rotating arm and working winch. Top of that, there’s a fire helicopter with opening cockpit and a motorbike with space for warning lights, and 7 mini-figures. Marked for 6 and up. We'd say this is a lot of building for a six

eeBoo 1000-piece Puzzles: Life in Space, Mother Earth, and Viva La Vida

(eeBoo $19.99 each) Looking for a gift for a teen or a project for the family? These 1000-piece puzzles have stunning graphics. They are challenging, but making it a team effort is one way to give kids a way into giant puzzles. Life in Space features a fantasy image of dozens of humanoids and aliens working, shopping, and dancing in outer space. Viv La Vida centers on an image of Frida and scenes from her life, all done in a decorative fashion. Or consider the joyful Mother Earth. Set up a table in a central location and watch what happens as the shared table top challenge competes with screens, large and small. Ages: Tweens, Teens, Family Fun Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award 2019

eeBoo Space Scratch Papers

(eeBoo $13.99) They get twenty sheets of scratch paper with two patterns below. One has greenish and yellow colors with a glow of stars. The other pattern is purple and reds with a silvery glow of stars and milky way below. Using the bamboo stick, kids use the same eye hand skills needed for pencil and paper tasks, only scratching the surface to expose the colors and glow below is less demanding than shaping letters on paper. This kind of playful activity is a lot more fun and helps develop those fine motor skills. 5 and up Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award 2019

eeBoo Beautiful World 100-piece Puzzle

(eeBoo $19.99) Living things from land, sea and air of our Beautiful World are scattered over this challenging 100-piece puzzle. All the illustrations by artist and naturalist, Kelsey Oseid, are labeled by name, which may help puzzlers find connecting pieces. It’s definitely not easy, but right on for the next level up. The pieces are fairly large and the finished puzzle will be 18 X 27 inches big, so give kids a good-sized table to start on, since you won’t want to have to move it midway through! Marked 5 and up. We think this will be a better choice for kids who can read, 2nd and third graders. Ages: Early School Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award 2019

eeBoo Decorative Glow-in-the-Dark Solar System Poster

(eeBoo $12.99) eeBoo’s Glow-in-the-Dark Solar System Poster is more than decorative. Space minded kids will find it heavenly...with 41 glow-in-the-dark stickers. It not only illustrates our Solar system it has trivia facts, such as our distance to the sun, the Moon’s circumference and more. Not exactly a toy, but it is an entertaining poster that kids will enjoy studying by day and falling asleep in the glow, by night. Ages: Early School, Tweens Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award 2019

Creativity for Kids Quick Knit Loom

(Creativity for Kids $19.99) A big round loom that is like your old horse rein spool loom...only so much better! Instead of the long and almost useless rope of knitted wool, this giant loom produces a "tube" shaped piece of knitting that can be turned into a hat kids can knit and wear! This is one of those new twists on a classic craft. The kit comes with rainbow colored yarn and two soft fuzzy pom-poms that can be attached. This is one of those projects that takes days of work. It will not be done in one sitting—unless kids sit for far too long. This kind of non-instant gratification is a good thing, a way of learning that sticking to a project has its rewards. The work is repetitive and re

eeBoo Votes for Women Puzzle

(eeBoo $19.95) On this 100th anniversary of the suffragette’s victory, it seems appropriate to celebrate women’s right to vote. The diverse faces and names of some of those who led the struggle are illustrated on this handsome 500-piece round puzzle. It’s not easy, but a good choice for a family project. Set up a table where family members can stop and do a bit now and then until you gradually complete the task. Those faces might spark curiosity. How about looking up a few of these leaders on the internet. Kids may be surprised to discover how long it took for women to have a voice. An informational poster is included with the puzzle. Also, see eeboo’s Votes For Women Flash Cards, using the

eeBoo Puppy Fuffle Game

(eeBoo $19.99) Kids can often say their numbers by rote, but giving meaning to number values and seeing the relationship between the word and one for one value takes time and repeated experiences. Counting out cookies so everyone at the table to have one, or counting how many spoons are needed for everyone’s ice cream are the way to make concrete and meaningful connections. Games like Puppy Fuffle also give beginners practice with simple counting. Kids take turns hitting the spinner and get to move their puppy playing piece that many spaces on the game board. If they land on a treat they get to take it. When all the treats on the board have been taken the player with the most treats wins—a l

eeBoo Hand Me a Candy Game

(eeBoo $19.99) Players reach into the bag to feel the cut-out candy pieces, trying to find a candy that matches the picture of the one on the card they picked. There are three levels of play. At the first level, players may need to pull three candies of the same shape in every color to win one point. At level two, they will need to find different shaped candies and some may have to be the same color. At level three, the shapes and colors are even more difficult and if the candy pieces don’t match, all the pieces go back into the bag and the player gets no points. A sweet little game for developing matching skills and using sense of touch to win a point. Winner is the first to get six points.

eeBoo Space Adventure or Rainbow & Friends Scratch Paper Stickers

(eeBoo $9.99 each set) Sometimes the best things come in small packages! This would be one of those times. Who doesn’t love stickers to put on notebooks or a package or your lunch pack or whatever? Enter these Scratch Art meets Paper Stickers. With the Space Adventure Set you get six sheets of stickers and a bamboo stick to rub and reveal the many colors below. There are precut planets, stars, rockets, moons, and UFOs—138 stickers to use as you choose. Or, look for the Rainbow and Friends Sticker Set with butterflies, flowers, clouds, hearts, dragonflies, and rainbows. You get 108 stickers in this set of six sheets and a bamboo rubbing stick. A good way to develop those fine motor skills nee

Sassy Whirling Wheel Waterfall, Double Dip Funnel & Flex N Fill Cups Set

(Sassy $24.99) Sassy's Whirling Wheel Waterfall is one bath toy that can double for tabletop fun, as well. With a sturdy suction cup it attaches to tub or table and a swipe of a hand sends the many little colorful cups spinning. Standing in the tub, water will help power the motion and spill as the cups reach the top. Standing on a table, the rainbow of colors will blur as it turns. If you want a triple winner, choose Sassy's Whirling Wheel Waterfall with the Double Dip Funnel that sprinkles and their Flex N Fill Cups, that baby can use to pour, stack and float. Interesting toys to explore how water spills and splashes. They have easy to grab handles and the cups and rims are textured. Well

Quercetti Peg Brite

(Quercetti $28.59) A sleek light up peg toy that comes with 120 pegs in green, blue, yellow, orange, red and clear. Kids can do their own designs or copy the images of the 12 pictures in the design booklet. We like the lidded basket to store the pegs and the design of the pegboard itself that has rubbery openings that grab the pegs. You’ll need to preload the pegboard with three AA batteries so that when the pegs are in place, they light up. Although no reading or writing are involved, this is classic kind of toy that develops multiple learning skills. Fine motor skills used for handling the pegs are the same ones used for grasping writing tools for pencil and paper tasks. Following the patt

Creativity for Kids Fairy Fashions

(Creativity for Kids $35.00) For the ballerina or fan of fairy magic, this is a kit for designing a wardrobe of winged fashions. It comes with a Flower Fairy Mannequin, yards of netting for tutus, felt cut out bodices and sequins to add to make them glitter, flowers, ribbons, wings, and everything needed to assemble gossamer fairy dresses. These outfits will fit an 11” fashion doll. Although the directions are clear, younger girls will probably need some help with some of the steps the first time through. Take care when taking the top layer off of a felt bodice to leave the see though stickum’ that the glitter will stick to. This is one of those times when watching the company’s videos can b

Creativity for Kids Create with Clay Mythical Creatures

(Creativity for Kids $16.99) We usually don’t suggest clay kits that are in part pre-made. However, this kit’s plastic creatures look a lot like the kind of armatures that sculptors build as a base for their creations. The kit comes with three mythical creatures: a winged dragon, a unicorn and a phoenix with wings. It includes five colors of non-drying clay, tools, wiggly eyes, feathers and instructions for making unique and brightly colored creatures. How detailed they will be depends on the young artist’s patience and skill. This calls for fine motor skills and patience. Marked for 5 and up, but we’d say slightly older kids with more dexterity will have more success with tweeking all the

Fisher-Price Imaginext DC Super Friends, R/C Transforming Batbot

(Fisher-Price $54.99) Here it is a Batbot of their dreams! When it comes to toys that move, bigger is usually better and this is one big transforming toy! Enemies of Gotham are going to run for their lives when this Batbot with Batman inside transforms into a Crime Fighting Machine. With sounds that add to the drama, it rises up into action and moves forward, sideways and backwards with speed. There are discs projectiles that fire low to the ground and not likely to hurt anyone. There’s room for other action figures (sold separately, of course) that can fit inside. Kids will easily learn how to use the easy to operate RC with lights and sounds. Yes, this is a novelty toy and is not likely to

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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.