Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years
Categories: Activity and Craft Kits

 


2015 Award
Faber-Castell Create With Clay Kit
(Faber-Castell $14.95 Score:)

The perfect kit for beginning artists who are new to the world of clay. It comes in a nice carrying case with 10 colors that do not dry out. Includes a rolling tool, 8 cutters, a texture plate, and push mold. This kind of art material builds not only creativity, it's a good way to develop eye hand control as well as strengthening fime motor skills they need for writing. Comes with a generous supply of clay--enough for a play date without running out of supplies. 

 

 

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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2015 Award
Mudpuppy Feathery Friends Cardboard Tube Craft Kit
(Mudpuppy Press $19.99 Score:)

An interesting way to introduce kids to the craft of using cardboard tubes and turning them into imaginative peacocks, owls and other feathery friends. The kit comes with material for making cardboard roller bases, though kids will soon see the fun of using tubes found from toilet paper rollers and paper towels. Recycling is a big idea they can take away from this craft kit. But for immediate fun the 80+ pieces includes felt sheets, patterned papers, feathers, goggly eyes and self stick cardboard tubes all ready for designing. The kit does not include glue or scissors, but it's a safe bet you have both and probably better than the kind of scissors and glue that often comes in kits.  Younger crafters will probably need your help with cutting the felt. The company also makes a tubes kit for making monsters (the kind and size kids can handle.) 6 & up.

 

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Crayola Star Wars Light-Up Tracing Pad
(Crayola $29.99 Score:)

For kids of a certain age, when drawing skills are not as perfect as they would wish and they prize realistic images, this kind of drawing pad can be a satisfying, if not very creative way to get results. Though we generally do not recommend tracing kits, this one is going to give them the pay offs they are looking for. The light-up LED pad comes with three Star Wars Transparency sheets, 10 sheets of images to trace with favorite Star Wars characters, ships, shields, plus 10 blank sheets, six colored pencils, six gel fx markers and a graphite pencil. You can get more images online at crayola.com/tracing. Though it is a tracing kit it does involve staying with a task, working with pencil and paper, fine motor skills and bringing their own imagination to retelling or extending a well loved story. 3 AA batteries are needed and not included in the package. Marked for 6 & up, we think kids of 8 and 9 will like this even more.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Mudpuppy Paper Bag Craft Kits
(Mudpuppy Press $19.99 Score:)

We really like the idea of making your own puppets and these kits give young crafters the materials they need for learning how. There are three different sets: Forest Friends, Magical Unicorns, and Pirates Ahoy. We especially like the 70 piece  Forest Friends with bags, handsome craft patterned paper, felt, googly eyes, pom-poms and precut shapes. You do need to provide your own scissors and glue, but most home have a ready supply of both. You'll probably also need to provide some help with cutting the felt for younger crafters. We'd say this is the easiest of the  three kits to assemble. Once they are done, kids will enjoy making up their own little stories to act out. The art of paper bag puppets is something they can continue to do with found materials, but this kit sets them on that path with well chosen materials and appealing designs. Marked 4 & up, again, we think this is something kids as old as 6 and up would enjoy.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Creativity for Kids Fleece Fashions
(Creativity for Kids $19.99 Score:)

A three-piece beginners sewing kit that kids can wear after they put their own creative touch to the headband, scarf and touch screen friendly gloves. Pre-cut fleece petals and flowers, pearls, beads, and colored embroidery threads are packaged along with a needle threaders and instructions. Beginners will like the pre-punched stitch guides on the scarf and headband as they learn some basics. Of course, the colors may not go with everyone's winter jacket, but if the neon green and hot pink gloves are a go, this will be a hit for girls 7 & up.  

 

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Horizon It's So Me Word Wear
(Horizon $9.99 Score:)

For the money you can't beat this bead set with over 278 alphabet Beads, 600 accent beads,78 alphabet metallic slider beads with two glitter bands to slide them onto, and three kinds and weights of cording (Elastic, Satin, and Waxed cotton). Kids can make an endless supply of bracelets to wear of give. The set pictured here is the one we tested and the one with slider beads and glitter bands. THere are other sets with a similar name that we have not tested. Just one BIG caution: Getting the packaging opened it not for kids to do on their own. Two adults working together managed to get the top and base apart without too much spillage, but it could easily of ended up all over the table or floor or both. Take your time opening this with great care! That said, the cording is stiff enough to use without the need for a needle and the beads are really varied but nice! Available at Target. 

 

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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2015 Award
Creativity for Kids Holiday Snow Globes
(Creativity for Kids $22 Score:)

Our tester was thrilled to be able to make his own snowglobes with this kit that comes with the makings for three good sized globes (something our parents totally appreciated). The kit includes three figurines (Santa, a snowman and a mini reindeer.) You get four packs of special non-drying clay and tools to make setting or other figures for a winter scene. Once the scene is in place glitter packets are added and the globe is snapped on the base. This step may require some adult help. Next you use the small funnel to fill the globe with water and snap the plug in place. We have to say, unlike other globes we tried, this set works and kids can use these as gifts for others or the start of a collection of their own.  If you are looking for a non-holiday theme, consider the new Under the Sea Water Globe set that works the same way but comes with three underwater figurines; a mermaid, octopus and sea horse. Marked for 6 & up.

 

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Crayola Crayon Carver
(Crayola $29.99 Score:)

Crayola has designed a motorized machine that allows you to personalize your crayons with your name, words, symbols. To design, you first pick your letter and symbol tiles, load them up into the front yellow positions. Once you're happy with your wording, place your crayon into the well and then you trace over the "letters and symbols" with a moving arm. While you're tracing the other end of the arm is carving into the crayon. There is a numeral expansion pack sold separately. For safety purposes the carving end is enclosed in plastic.  While most of our kids enjoyed the project, the majority of our parents did not find this novelty product compelling. They did not feel the finished product was sufficiently clear and while they love the Crayola brand felt this was skippable. 6 & up.

 

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Your Decor Scrapbook & Cards
(Horizon $14.97 Score:)

Looking for a showy gift that looks like a lot more than the price? Crafty kids will love the big pink craft box with a slanted top that can work like a lap desk. Inside there is a small scrap book with scissors, glue stick, sticker sheets with letters, gemstones, colorful stickers, stencils, markers, wood stampers, punch outs ,cards, and lots of ideas for making colorful scrapbook pages and more. A great birthday gift for 6 & up.

 

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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2015 Awards
Curious Chef Boy's Chef Kit
(Curious Chef $25 Score:)

Getting boys involved in the kitchen just got a little easier with this chef's kit. They made the apron and tools less girlie by making them mostly blue, but girls as well as boys will like this set. You probably have most of these tools in your kitchen already, but having your own set of tools just makes it that much more fun. For good math, reading and creativity, few activities are more rewarding. Add to that the fun of sharing food you've made with family and friends. This kit with a blue and green chef's apron includes a real kitchen tools: a wire whisk, spoon, a silicon spatula, measuring spoons and a cookie cutter. Dishwasher safe. Bring home a cook book for kids or go online and pick out a recipe for something simple but fun to share. Cooking is science, math, reading and a whole lot of fun for parent and child together time. 4-8.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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