Looking for something on North Jersey Mom? Search for it here.....

Search This Blog

Sunday, November 27, 2011

What to Buy?

This list (c/o goodhousekeeping.com) will give a little insight into kid-tested toys that passed in various age groups.  we can say from experience that 2 and 5 year olds LOVE the Critter Clinic, and play with it (almost) every day! 

Good Housekeeping's Best Toy Awards 2011

Good Housekeeping Research Institute experts examined hundreds of new toys and chose 85 contenders for the truest test: a lab full of kids. Next, 115 children played for days to help select these 19 winners.
Best Toy Awards 2011
Choosing the winners of our fourth annual toy awards involved more than setting up a few playdates. Over seven days, 115 children — ages 3 to 14 — played, filling out nearly 1,000 surveys. But it wasn't just a numbers game; toys had to pass our safety testing, too.
Little Tikes 2-in-1 Garden Cart & Wheelbarrow
Photo: Mark Lund
More from
Good Housekeeping:
Take It Outside!
AGES 2-5
The Little Tikes 2-in-1 Garden Cart & Wheelbarrow
($40; littletikes.com; ages 2+) and the Imperial Toy Garden Bubble Leaf and Lawn Blower
($19.99; imperialtoy.com; ages 2+) were among our youngest testers' top picks. Little landscapers loved pretend-planting the plastic flowers — and really, what kid can resist a blast of bubbles?
Manhattan Toy Quadrilla Melody Basic Set
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Toy of Note
AGES 2-5
A musical toy and a building challenge in one: Children assemble a wood track with the Manhattan Toy Quadrilla Melody Basic Set ($64; manhattantoy.com; ages 4+), and as the marble rolls through the course, elegant chimes ring out.
Educational Insights' Playfoam
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Break the Mold
AGES 2-5
Endlessly squishable, Educational Insights' Playfoam ($5 for a four-pack, other sets available; educationalinsights.com; ages 3+) captivated our young testers with its sculptability. Kids created colorful creatures, decorated walls with the beady dough (it peels right off and won't stain), and discovered that it even sort of bounces!
Mattel's Hot Wheels Wall Tracks
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Course of Action
AGES 2-5
With Mattel's Hot Wheels Wall Tracks ($30 for the starter set; mattelshop.com; ages 4+), toy cars climb to new heights. Tracks attach to a wall via removable brackets; cars zip down through straight-aways and loop-the-loops without getting scattered across the floor.
Battat's B. Critter Clinic
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Doctor Do-A-Lot
AGES 2-5
Battat's B. Critter Clinic ($25; justb-byou.com; ages 2+) has a toy stethoscope and syringe and more for your future veterinarian to examine and treat the ailing plush pets. The pup and kitty can convalesce in colorful kennel cubbies, and the corresponding door keys let a child practice fine motor skills.
Little Kids' Toobers & Zots
Photo: Mark Lund
A Creative Bent
AGES 2-5
The flexible foam pieces of Little Kids' Toobers & Zots ($25; littlekidsinc.com; ages 3+) can be coiled and strung together to design all sorts of "foamstructions." Our kid testers tended to make wearable art — elaborate crowns and silly hats — but options are as limitless as a child's imagination.
Shure's Daisy Girls Dollhouse
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Home Sweet Home
AGES 2-5
Shure's Daisy Girls Dollhouse ($50; shureproducts.com.; ages 3+) combines the fun of paper dolls (here, made more durably of wood) with the pleasures of playing house. The four girls, named after flowers, share a fashionable wardrobe that attaches magnetically.
Waboba Tosy AFO
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Swoop Dreams
AGES 5-8
The high-flying Waboba Tosy AFO ($20; waboba.com; ages 7+) really soars and (usually) returns, boomerang-like, to its starting spot. Light and flexible, it won't cause damage or injury in a crash landing. LED lights illuminate nighttime takeoffs.
Ravensburger's Xoomy
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Sketch Artist
AGES 5-8
Ravensburger's Xoomy ($25; ravensburger.com; ages 7+) comes with 20 whimsical image patterns to project and trace, plus paper and pen. Illustrators-in-training loved customizing these renderings with their own pencils, crayons, and markers.
Little Kids' Crunch Art
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Easy Room Art
AGES 5-8
Fantastic fabrications can be made mess-free with Little Kids' Crunch Art($5 and up; littlekidsinc.com; ages 4+). Just press little bits of cloth into boards using a stylus...and voilà! Our school-age testers found the results worthy of display and praise.
Wild Planet's Denkosekka Battle Set
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Catch 'Em If You Can
AGES 5-8
In Wild Planet's Denkosekka Battle Set ($19.25; shopwildplanet.com; ages 7+), players fling a yo-yo-like magnetic catcher toward a mat strewn with tokens to see who's the best picker-upper. Tokens have different point values; whoever nabs the most points wins.
Panasonic Viera TC-P50ST30
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Crash Course
AGES 5-8
Part construction set, part racetrack, the K'Nex Mario Kart Wii Mario and Luigi Starting Line($60; knex.com; ages 6+) lets kids build an obstacle course and then set motorized Mario and Luigi cars loose. The crazy brothers bounce off each other and the track's roadblocks — live, but just like in the video game.
Jakks Pacific B.I.G. Power Hand
Photo: Mark Lund
Robo-Kid
AGES 5-8
The Jakks Pacific B.I.G. Power Hand ($30; becomebig.com; ages 6+) fulfills every child's sci-fi dream of having a bionic body part. It fits like a glove (literally); by moving each finger, the wearer can cause the oversize digits to bend, reach, and grasp.
Scientific Explorer's Disgusting Special Effects Make-Up Kit
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Gross-Out Gear
AGES 8+
Is your child hot for horror movies? Scientific Explorer's Disgusting Special Effects Make-Up Kit ($20; poof-slinky.com; ages 8+) comes with everyday ingredients to teach kids how to easily fake bloody gashes, dramatic bruises, and more.
SmartLab Weird & Wacky Contraption Lab
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
A Feat of Engineering
AGES 8+
With the SmartLab Weird & Wacky Contraption Lab ($40; smartlabtoys.com; ages 8+), kids assemble a course of ramps that relies on the science of levers, gears, and gravity. A rolling marble triggers a chain reaction to launch a plastic pig from a cannon. (Hey, there's a reason it's called "wacky.")
Lego Creator Rescue Robot
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
New Kid on the Block
AGES 8+
In its latest kit, Lego Creator Rescue Robot ($17; lego.com; ages 7+), the famed plastic-brick maker adds bling with a light-up block. The set has instructions for building three characters (the namesake robot, plus Laserbot and Robocat). Of course, as with all Legos, kids can also improvise.
Jakks Pacific Spy Net Bionic Ear
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Listen Up!
AGES 8+
Take a pass on glass-to-the-door eavesdropping with the Jakks Pacific Spy Net Bionic Ear ($20; spynethq.com; ages 8+). This sound magnifier can be stuck to a wall or door; it connects to the included earbuds for a covert operation.
Silverlit's 3D Twister
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Speed Demon
AGES 8+
This remote-controlled car zipped its way to the top of our testers' lists. Silverlit's 3D Twister ($50; get3dtwister.com; ages 5+) doesn't disappoint, whether careening at dizzying speed down the hall or flipping end-over-end (it's two-sided, so the car just keeps going).
Klutz Guide to the Galaxy
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
The Sky's The Limit
AGES 8+
The Klutz Guide to the Galaxy ($20; klutz.com; ages 8+) lets wannabe astronomers build their own telescope. The constellation and moon maps help pinpoint galactic bodies, and the book details a slew of otherworldly activities to explore.



No comments:

Post a Comment