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2014 Award
Seedling Design Your Own Birds House
(Seedlings $29.99 Score:)

A smooth pre-assembled birdhouse comes ready to paint and then put out for your feathered friends. The kit includes three tubes of acrylic paint, a stiff acrylic brush, and instructions. There is no hanging devise so you may want to tie this in place in a nook of a low tree where kids can keep watch. A great way to introduce kids to birding. Help them start their life list of the birds they have sighted.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Award
Tape-a-Doodle Extreme
(Creativity for Kids $19.99 Score:)

Designed to appeal to boys, this kit includes five rolls of magical tape a doodle to apply to the pages of the activity sheets. There are paper airplanes to decorate and fold and fly as well as robots, aliens and rocket ships. To add more color there are markers and an idea/instruction leaflet. Putting the tape onto the page is easy and pleasing and the patterned tape can be used elsewhere as well. The tapes include sport balls, eyes, dots, flames and teeth. This is one way to get boys, who often avoid crafts that require fine motor skills, involved. 7 & up

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Tape-a-Doodle Arts and Crafts
(Creativity for Kids $19.99 Score:)

You get five different tape-a-doodle dispensers along with markers and a spiral bound journal to decorate. Using the tape is sheer magic. Each tape dispenser has a different color and pattern and there’s no problem with pulling the tape out or cutting it. All you do is roll it and it leaves a colorful trail. This set comes with 98 feet of tape and it will stick to surfaces other than the books provided. If you want to experiment with the tape alone you can bring home a three pack with 55 feet of tape. 7 & up.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Award
Creativity for Kids What's Up Journal
(Creativity for Kids $24.99 Score:)

A 7" X 8" spiral bound journal has 20 pages with ready-made graphics that kids can enhance with the crafty ingredients in the kit. It includes three rolls of bright washi tape, pearls, rhinestones, canvas and acetate stickers, markers, and more. This is less elaborate than a scrapbooking kit, but a good place to start for younger girls. 7 & up.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2014.

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2014 Award
Creativity for Kids BFF Stamp Art Scarves
(Creativity for Kids $24.99 Score:)

Two silky-sheer white cotton scarves come in this craft kit along with permanent fabric paint, 2 sponge brushes, a peace sign, heart, flower, and cloud shaped foam stampers, a work tray, plastic sheet and very clear directions. Keep in mind that the fabric paint will stain clothes and counters, so the directions are very explicit with cautions. We also suggest wearing vinyl gloves, although they are not in the kit. Once the design is on the scarf it must dry for 24 hours and then rinsed to set the paint. In short, this is a kit that will need adult supervision and assistance. It's also the kind of kit that kids love since they make an end-product they can actually wear and share. Marked for 7 & up, we think it will be better for slightly older girls 9 & up, and even they will need supervision.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Award
Creativity for Kids Rhinestone Headbands
(Creativity for Kids $20 Score:)

Ten flocked headbands come with stick-on strips of glittery rhinestones as well as sheer ribbons to tie on. A fun kit for solo use...make a wardrobe of headbands to go with all of her outfits or use this for a sleep over craft that the girls can share. To avoid bad feelings over color choices have them draw slips with color names. You may want to add ribbons or cut these in half since there are only five ribbons and ten headbands. This craft calls for some dexterity, but basically it is an easy to do and satisfying craft with wearable end products. 7 & up.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Award
Creativity for Kids Rubber Band Snap Wraps
(Creativity for Kids $17.99 Score:)

A terrific craft kit that can be enjoyed at a party, overnight, playdate or solo.
It comes with five brightly colored silicone snap wrap bracelets and more than 300 thick and thin rubber bands in vivid colors for making patterns that make each a unique creation. The kit also includes 10 metallic charms (peace signs, flowers, keys, hearts, and stars) with easy to use jump rings that attach to the colorful bracelets. Kids can use the ideas in the instructions or design their own. A satisfying craft kit with end products kids will like to wear.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2014.

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2014 Award
Quercetti Qubo
(International Playthings $36.99 Score:)


Six big waffle shaped blocks can be stacked or locked together to form a box or other shapes. The 19-piece set includes an assortment of brightly colored smaller blocks with pegs to stack into each other or place between the bigger blocks. All of these pieces are sized up for safety for toddlers. No hidden problems here. An open-ended toy with no right or wrong way of doing things. Develops creativity as well as color concepts and problem solving skills. Younger toddlers may need help in learning how to fit the big pieces together, but will enjoy taking them apart right from the start. 1 & up.

Age: Toddlers. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Awards
Janod Shapes Quiz
(Janod $30 Score:)

More than just another shape sorter, this wooden quiz game can be rolled like a big rattle or used with younger children for simple fill and dump games. Cleverly designed there are just three shape cut outs on each side, so you can introduce shape sorting without overwhelming. Once they learn the mechanics of fitting a shape into the corresponding slot, add the other three pieces on the reverse side.
To help kids learn to match shape to slot, talk about the color of the pieces and the color coded rims of the slots. Marked for 18 months & up but we think 2's and up will like this more.

SNAP: Use just three shapes to begin for naming and knowing and filling and dumping. Unlike so many shape sorters, this does not look babyish and can be used with less frustration since it does not present an oerwhelming number of shapes.

Age: Toddlers. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2014 Awards
Kaloo Mini Zig Musical
(Janod $35 Score:)

Hang this tan bunny in the stroller or crib and pull the big wooden ring to activate the music box that plays as bunny's accordion folded body moves up. Bunny's tan ears are lined with licks of green, the neck tie is wine colored velour, the body is turquoise and green, and his feet are yellow and orange. With stitched features, this is one of those easy to take along music boxes that can be soothing on an afternoon away from home. Newborn & up.

Age: Infants. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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