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Product Type: Toys
Award: Gold
Age: Preschoolers
Review Year: 2012

 


2012 Award
Feed the Woozle
(Peaceable Kingdom $20 Score:)

Designed for beginning game players, this is a cooperative game that involves some fine and gross motor skills, simple counting, and turn taking. Set the Woozle playing board with its big mouth on a table that kids can easily reach. Players take turns tossing the die and putting that number of snacks in a big plastic spoon. Now the trick is to carry the snacks on the spoon to the Woozle without spilling them. For every piece that gets in the Woozles big mouth you get a yummy card. There are thee levels of play. Level one involves simple walking to the Woozle and feeding it. Level Two involves following the directions on the spinner. Players may have to walk backwards, hop or wiggle and still not spill the pieces. The third version calls for a blindfold! This will make a fun party game. Level Two sounds like the most fun. Blindfolds are sometimes a little scary for threes...but try it once they have the hang of this game.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Awards
Educational Insights Puppet-on-a-Stick
(Educational Insights $24 Score:)

Three zany looking puppet heads are on rods with levers that make their mouths move. They have googly eyes, three colors, and odd-looking head shapes. These may in fact be easier for kids to manipulate than the usual hand glove puppets and with their strange look may lend themselves to original story telling. 4 & up.

SNAP AWARD: Given their rod holding design, these may be easier for kids with physical challenges to operate. They can be held in one hand and the mouths made to move with the other hand. So these may be real find.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Learning Resources New Sprouts Fix It!
(Learning Resources $24.95 Score:)

For pretend carpentry play, this set of plastic tools is scaled just right for toddlers. There's a tool box for carrying a small hammer( with soft hammer head), a screwdriver, wrench, saw and drill with sound appeal. All the pieces are designed for little hands and have soft rubberized parts. 2 & up.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Chronicle Around the World Puzzle
(Chronicle $14.95 Score:)

Highly stylized images of multicultural children from around the world fit together, hand in hand, on this big 16-piece floor puzzle. The playing pieces are two-sided, so there are 32 images that can be joined. Each figure is wearing the native costume of his or her country and the name of the country is printed on the side. Marked for 3 & up, but the concepts are well beyond that age group.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Chronicle Sports! Matching Game
(Chronicle $14.99 Score:)

A set of 72 colorful matching cards for the classic game of concentration with unusual illustrations featuring kids playing all sorts of sports. A good opportunity for developing knowing and naming language to match the images as well as visual perception is seeing matches. This is one of a series of matching games with different themes. Kids who are crazy about dinosaurs will like this Dinosaurs! Matching Game and for expanding language skills look for their Animals! Matching Game. The sets come packaged in sturdy boxes that have magnetic closures. All three sets are handsomely illustrated by artist Micah Player. These are marked 3 & up, though we think slightly older kids will enjoy them more.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Awards
Learning Resources Farmer's Market Color Sorting Set
(Learning Resources $39.99 Score:)

Five plastic baskets come with fruits and veggies to sort by color. There are stick-on color labels to put on the basket and five pieces of food in each color. These are well-proportioned props for pretend stores, and kitchens that are also useful for building knowing and naming language skills as well as possible games of counting and making patterns. The set comes with 30 pieces that will find their way into all sorts of pretend play and learning games. 3 & up.

SNAP GAME: Put three veggies in a row. Have/help child name them. Have child turn away a you remove one. Can he tell which one is missing? Try it another way. Have child turn away while you add a fourth piece. Can he tell the name of piece added?

SNAP GAME: For kids working on beginning sounds put down three or four of the foods and say, I'm thinking of something that starts with the same sound as bird, bug, bobby...if that doesn't do it add another clue it rhymes with Hannah....did they find the banana?

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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