Matching Games
More Than Your Old Lotto Game
Tags: matching games
Posted: 2014-08-23 09:11:55 By:




2014 Awards
Seek-a-Boo Game
(MindWare $19.99 Score: )

One of the most age appropriate games for older toddlers and younger preschoolers. The game can be scaled down for the youngest players by using fewer sets of matching images. There are six categories: food, toys, clothing, things found outdoors, animals and colors/shapes. For each category there are large circles with clear photos of each image- these are called the "Seek Me" cards. You place those on the floor. Now you select from the matching "Find Me" cards. Ask your child to find the image on the find me card.  You play until you have found all the matches. While this may seem very basic, it's just right for older toddlers and young preschoolers as a way of developing their vocabulary.  You can add more categories for older players. Bravo to Mindware for making a game on target for this age group!

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on




2014 Awards
Marco's Polos
(Educational Insights $9 Score: )

A fun color matching card game in the shape of polo shirts with stripes. There are three base cards on the table and players vie to get rid of the divided stack of cards by putting down shirt cards with at least one matching color to the previous card on the stack. Instead of wild cards, there are "lock" cards that a player can put on any of the three stacks to limit their opponents play. These locks can be reversed if you have an unlock card. Since there are six base card colors and you only use three at a time, it is best to use three that are distinctively different, not the purple and blue or red and orange; these pairs are somewhat close in hue and may be confusing for young players.  The winner is the one who puts down all their cards first. 2-4 players. 5 & up

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




2014 Awards
Life On Earth Simple Bingo
(eeBoo $14.95 Score: )

A new take on the classic Bingo game with beautiful illustrations from Melissa Sweet. Comes with six game cards, 36 game pieces and a cotton drawstring bag. The pieces feature a wide-range of things you find in nature: cardinals, butterflies, a pine tree, cactus, get the idea.  Also new and noteworthy, Parlor Bingo.  It comes with old-fashioned numbered cards and a master sheet.  The "markers" come in a cotton drawstring bag.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2014.




2014 Awards
Crazy Pants
(Chatterbox Toys $20 Score: )

You'll like the quality of the art and feel of this sturdy board game that can be played in multiple ways—all of which challenge kids to use their listening and looking skills while also learning the rules of turn taking and the ups and downs gamesmanship. There are enough rounds so that kids can experience the fun of winning and inevitable alternative. There's no reading required but the games do play on matching, memory, color concepts, and listening. Cards can be used for Bingo style game, concentration, and sequencing. Develops a child's ability to see and hear differences as she finds not just a green dress, but a green dress with the purple bow. That kind of detail calls for more than chance, but is an important skill needed before reading. A good choice for 3-5.

Use this for language development as well as matching skills. A rich variety of games that can be adapted to your child.

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




2014 Awards
Number Pops
(Learning Resources $19.99 Score: )

For the youngest players, this is a color matching game that also involves beginning counting skills. Marked for two and up, we'd say this is probably a much better choice for threes and fours. That said, we can see how kids will be attracted to fitting the ice cream shaped pops into the colored pretend shells on top. These are color-coded with dots on the ice cream matching the colored shell that is marked with a numeral. Aside from pretend play these can be used for putting them in numerical order as well as matching dots and numerals. Or play, "I'm thinking of a pop that is one less than 6 or two more than five. For two's start with 1-3 and no more than five pops and gradually add more pops once they have a good grip on 1-5.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on




2014 Award
Disney Planes Matching Game
(Wonder Forge $10..99 Score: )

For kids who are fans of Planes will like playing the classic matching game of concentration. Put the cards face down and take turns turning over two to find a pair of matching planes. True, it may be an old game, but an important one for building memory skills. These cards with distinctive bright backgrounds make the task somewhat easier. 3 & up

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




2014 Awards
Pattern Play
(MindWare $34.99 Score: )

Like a set of parquetry blocks, these geometric wooden blocks fit into a wooden frame in various patterns. There are forty colorful blocks in the set and forty pattern cards that challenge kids' visual discrimination and matching skills. Children can make up their own patterns as well. Marked for 3 and up. We'd say the "and up" is more accurate. Three's are not ready for this kind of matching game, though they will like playing with the pieces. This kind of matching of patterns is more appropriate for fives and up. We suggest a basket for holding the pieces, so they don't go lost. Getting them all back in the frame and box is not going to happen every time they touch this toy. A large basket or bigger box will save the pieces!

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




2014 Awards
Plan Toys Fruit and Veggie Domino Game
(Plan Toys $29.99 Score: )

Twenty-eight colorful dominoes are ready for matching games that require no reading or counting. Matching is by the seven fruits or veggies that kids will soon be able to know and name. But watch out—there are green pears and green peppers. Want to bend the rules and make it a color matching game—why not? A good pre-reading game for older 2's and up. With indented fronts and backs these are easy to grasp. Marked 2 & up.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2014. Click here to purchase the product on




2014 Award
Spot it! Freeze
(Blue Orange Games $25 Score: )

Newest addition to the Spot it! games, a timer that really puts the pressure on players as they try to spot the matching images on two cards. There are different ways to play and two different setting on the timer that add to the challenge. However you play there is only one matching pair on any two cards, so you have to be fast. Our testers were not sure the timer would be fun for all players; it is definitely for older players. This set of cards features "temperature-charged" things such as polar bears, camels, umbrellas, beach chairs, etc. Instead of the usual round tin, the cards store in the timer, making this still an easy-to-take along game for family fun. Our testers also like the stand-alone game of Spot It Splash, no timer needed, just match up images that all relate to the water, such as boats, fish, sand castles and such. 8 to adult.

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


Products for Infants
Products for Toddlers
Products for Preschoolers
Products for Early School Years
Products for Later School Years
Twitter   Facebook     YouTube 

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio - All Rights Reserved. Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Blue Chip Award are Registered Trademarks of the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio.

Instructions for submitting product to the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio for review.



Contact the Toyportfolio by phone at (212) 598-0502 or by email at

Copyright 1995-2015


Products reviewed by the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio are provided by the manufacturer at their cost. The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio does not require or accept fees for reviewing products.