Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Active Physical Play

 

Crayola Washable Colored Bubbles
(Crayola $2.99 Score:)

As much as we wanted to love these bubbles, they had some serious problems. They come with a whole host of warnings about what not to get them on. Yes, they are designed for outdoors--but even then, you have to be super careful not to get them on your decking, your outdoor furniture, etc.  Too many rules in our book.  More important, they just don't float the same way regular bubbles do. The "color" makes them heavier. Sadly, we'd recommend passing.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2011.

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2010 Awards
Rubbabu Funky Ball Assortment
(Rubbabu $6 Score:)

These balls come in many colors and interesting shapes. Some like the Crater ball has finger holds while the Bubble ball has bumps. You might also like the Fashion balls with swirling indents that make them easier to grasp. Or look for the ones with alphabet letters, geometric shapes, or numerals molded into their surfaces. These come in many primary bold colors and they are rubbery with soft flocking. Babies will like them for roly poly social games; toddlers will like chasing them and they are soft enough so that preschoolers will like bouncing and trying to catch them. They are the size of a softball and make a nice impulse toy that leads to active play. All ages.
The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Infants, Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Little Tikes Pirate Water Table
(Little Tikes $99 Score:)

We just received a terrific review of this outdoor toy. It's like a water table with a theme that is bound to appeal to kids who like playing pirates. Before we get to the raves, let us say up front, you need a power drill to put this together. Apparently, this was not a problem to our test family...their mom wrote: "Putting together the water table was a breeze! There are only 10 screws -  took me about 15 minutes total to put together (reading instructions included). The only part that was tough was the stopper. I couldn't get it through the hole. My husband had a hard time, but did get it through! My boys loved it! My three year old just kept saying "this is so cool!"  The fountain in the middle was a big hit! I also like that the pump automatically shuts off after a couple minutes--The button is very easy to operate on the pump! Both my 23 month old and 3 and half year old had no trouble with it! They loved all of the characters that came with it and enjoyed putting them in the boats and having them go down the slide. It has kept them entertained for about an hour straight each time, and they don't want to come in when it's time. It's a great toy for them to just explore and use their imaginations without any parent involvement. They enjoyed just standing there and doing their own thing. (Which is very nice!) It was also a good cause/effect lesson with the water fountain. My older child wanted to know what made the things spin on the sides. I always like the unexpected teachable moments! The only negative I had was the water gun part. The button was very hard to push for my kids. They don't yet have the motor skills to support it underneath with one finger and push the button with the other. They would just end up pushing on it and popping it out of place. Eventually, it just got ignored with all of the other fun things to play with on the table. Clean-up was very easy! Just pop the plug out and empty! Overall, this toy was a big hit at our house!" Sounds like a winner to us. 24 months & up.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Double Play All In One Sports Trainer
(Step 2 $99 Score:)

We wanted to love this inflatable sports center and so did our testers. We liked the idea of having a multiple sports center that wasn't necessarily a permanent fixture in your backyard.  There's just something fun about inflatable backyard toys.  We sent the product to a family with two kids (boys, 5 and 3) and will they enjoyed the novelty of the product - that gives you a place to shoot the basketball (into the 7' high hoop), a hockey and soccer net, as well as targets for practicing your baseball and football throws- their folks had problems with getting the toy to fully inflate.  (They used their own more powerful airblower but still it did not inflate fully or firmly enough to hold the center portion of the toy up in a strong wind). So when the boys went to shoot the basketball, the rim would just collapse...so that experience was frustrating.  The toy comes with a soccer ball, basketball,  stakes for securing the toy and a blower. The air blower can not be used to blow up the balls that come with the toy. So while we love the concept of this toy, we think the design needs some more tweaking.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Haba Shopping Cart Caddy
(Haba $125 Score:)

For pretend play that is not gender specific, this birch wood cart is ideal. It is made of beautiful birch wood and has blue tires with rubber treads that roll with ease. The cart itself is fitted out with a place for a doll or teddy bear and plenty of room for the groceries. It's beautifully balanced, so that even a younger toddler who pushes it about will not have it tip. That said, the company says this is for kids 3 & up.  The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Little Tikes Easy Score Kick Croquet
(Little Tikes $19.99 Score:)

A fun twist on the the classic game of croquet, that's just right for preschoolers. Instead of using mallets to hit the ball, this colorful set comes with two small inflatable kickballs. The wickets stick into the ground with retractable stakes (made of plastic). Comes with an air pump for the two kickballs.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Maui Skyball Slammer
(Maui Toys $14.95 Score:)

The ball promises to bounce 75 feet in the air. We wish we had videotaped our testers (of all ages) working on getting their balls to bounce the highest! The company's new Slammer set comes with a suction cup - so you can have fun catching the ball.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
YBike
(National Sporting Goods $79.99 Score:)

This low to the ground plastic ride-on has a very modern look. It has one fat wheel at the front and two fat wheels at the back, making it almost like a two-wheeler, but less tippy. This bike is easy for kids to get on and off, but what we really love about the YBIKE is the stability. The majority of ride-ons, including most traditional tricycles, tend to be tippy on the front wheel. The YBike seat is further back so the center of gravity is held down by your child's weight and when they turn - they can do so without falling over...most of the time.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Optrix 3-D Bubbles
(Imperial Toy Company $7.99 & up Score:)

Just when you think you have seen everything--get ready for a brand new bubble extravaganza! Put the 3D glasses on, dip the wand into the bubble solution and "It's Magic!" Bubbles with star-like rays float on the wind. They shimmer in the light with a prism of colors. You have to see them to believe them. You can buy stars, lightening bolts, butterflies, or hearts. Simply amazing! But if you only have one set you have to share the glasses.  The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements.  We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
Radio Flyer Ultimate Comfort Wagon
(Radio Flyer $169.99 Score:)

If you were looking for the Lexus of wagons, look no further than the new Radio Flyer Ultimate Family Wagon.  Our testers liked all the tricked out features of this wagon that is designed to provide the ultimate ride to your kids.  It comes with seating for adjustable seating for two, places for their drinks, seatbelts (a really important safety feature), a place for your drinks as well (on the outside) and a UV cover that can be removed if full sun is preferred. What's also pretty neat--if you have one child, the other seat back can pull down so that they have a surface (for drawing or using as a table for a snack). The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements.    We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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