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Product Type: Toys
Award: Platinum
Review Year: 2013

 


2013 Award
Play Like a Pro Basketball Hoop
(Little Tikes $72.99 Score:)

Basic gear for active play! This adjustable hoop (from 4 to 6feet) makes this a great choice for preschoolers and early school aged kids interested in learning how to shoot some hoops!  Light enough to make this a choice for inside or outside play.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Lottie Kawaii Karate
(Arklu $19.99 Score:)

Our testers continue to love the active life style of their little Lottie dolls. Just 7-inches tall, with silky hair and painted faces, these are girls - not fashion dolls. They are jointed and able to stand. Just the right size for the hand or to fit for many doll houses. Each comes with a backstory that involves the girls in typical activities. This season Kawaii Karate Lottie is ready for class; her object is to win her yellow belt. Add separate outfits for Gymnastics, soccer or boogie boarding. Or consider a Lottie Robot Girl is entering the science fair and hopes to win with a robot she is building. Our Lottie fans also liked the Pandora's Box Lottie, who works in an animal shelter; Pirate Queen, a mariner Light House Keeper, and Butterfly Protector with her own net. Marked 3 & up, we think the fine motor skills for dressing and redressing these dolls will challenge kids under 5.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Lottie Robot Girl
(Arklu $19.99 Score:)

Our testers continue to love the active life style of their little Lottie dolls. Just 7-inches tall, with silky hair and painted faces, these are girls - not fashion dolls. They are jointed and able to stand. Just the right size for the hand or to fit for most doll houses. Each comes with a backstory that involves the girls in typical activities. This season Robot Girl is entering the school science fair; her project is building a robot with recycled materials. Her Busy Lizzie the Robot project is sold separately. Or consider a Kawaii Karate Lottie dressed for karate class where she hopes to win her yellow belt. Our Lottie fans also liked the Pandora's Box Lottie, who works in an animal shelter; Pirate Queen, a mariner Light House Keeper, and Butterfly Protector with her own net. Marked 3 & up, we think the fine motor skills for dressing and redressing these dolls will challenge kids under 5.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Krazy Kars Max Traxxx Tracer Racers
(Skullduggery $29.99 Score:)

Awesome. If you're looking for a car track set, look no further. First, the set comes with two cars that have LED lights on the bottom (you can change the settings to adjust the type of pattern the car will leave on the track). Yes, the cars leave a trace of LIGHT. Did we mention that the tracks will light up in the dark from the LED lights?  Our testers loved  both leaving LED on all the way--this lit up the entire inside of the track or putting the LED lights on pulse...which left a broken pattern on the track. Either way - this is a hit. The tracks go together well and come with suction cups so that you can make two ramps and race the cars.  The company tells us that there is a patent pending, we just know this is sooo much fun.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Little Bits Deluxe 18 Bit Set
(littleBits $199.99 Score:)

Just as the name says, this is the biggest, deluxe version of a clever kit that allows kids to snap together a spectacular array of library of electronic modules. This kit has 18 color coded modules that budding engineers can explore to make sound, light, buttons and sensors without having to use wires, solder or programming. There is an excellent project book with instructions for 15 projects and many, many more projects on the littleBits website. Testers were amused with making a Tickle Machine, Prank Handshake, Auto Greeter, Truck Crane, among others. A science toy with a sense of humor. THere are smaller less pricey sets. The Base Kit $99 is a good introductory kit with 10 bits, a project book and a button, dimmer and buzzer to make a doorbell for your room. The Premium Kit $149 and has 14 bits and a good number of accessories to spark your child's creative circuits. Additonal base projects are are available online. Another good choice for STEM learning.

Age: Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Groovy Girls Princess Ariana
(Manhattan Toy $20 Score:)

One of several new princess dolls in the Groovy Girls collection. We liked them all, but somehow the happy looking dark-haired princess seemed most refreshing.  Like all Groovy Girls she is soft and safe and totally huggable and lovable.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Blabla Bunny Rattle
(blabla kids $20 Score:)

A seven inch crocheted bunny with a jingle rattle locked inside. Fits into little hands and soft enough for baby to use with safety, even little babies who typically have jerky hand movements until they gain greater control. Use this with new babies for tracking games. The sound is not startling. There is also a black and white cow, a pink and white piggy and others that are pretty adorable. This is one of a line of stylish products done in Peru at a workshop for women. They are made of 100% cotton and filled with poly and machine washable.

Age: Infants. Award Year: 2013.

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2013 Awards
Blabla Pig Rattle
(blabla kids $20 Score:)

A seven-inch crocheted pig with a jingle rattle locked inside. Fits into little hands and soft enough for baby to use with safety, even little babies who typically have jerky hand movements until they gain greater control. The sound is not startling. Use this with new babies for tracking games. There is also a black and white cow, a blue and white bunny and others that are pretty adorable. This is one of a line of stylish products done in Peru at a workshop for women. They are made of 100% cotton and filled with poly and machine washable.

Age: Infants. Award Year: 2013.

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2013 Awards
BlaBla Pom the Apple Dolls
(blabla kids $44 & up Score:)

Newest of the BlaBla huggables, 12-inch Pom the Apple comes wrapped up in a scarf, big sweater, and leggings for chilly days ahead. Or for a bigger 18-inch version ($55) choose her look-alike big sister. If you prefer green apples, check out their Apple the Apple doll. Totally safe with no hidden snags, this is one of a charming collection of knit dolls that are washable. All ages

Age: Infants, Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Blabla Mini London Dog
(blabla kids $44 Score:)

We like this black and white pooch with high contrast eye appeal for babies. This will be more of a gazing toy for little ones at the start. Part of the BlaBla collection of handmade toys that are washable and have no hidden chocking hazards. All ages.

Age: Infants, Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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