Best Toys 2019
By GFM Editors NOVEMBER 2019
Magical Tales Black and White Gymini
Baby will enjoy tummy and back play with detachable toys like the musical hedgehog, playful plush cloud, wind chime badger, and crinkly peek-a-boo tree, which promote “cause ‘n effect” and object permanence skills, while the black and white design aides visual stimulation. Ages: birth–18 mos. $60; tinylove.com.
Magical Tales 4-in-1 Here I Grow Mobile Activity Center
This fun play gym aids babies as they strengthen key muscles for walking and learn cause and effect; it also nurtures emotional, cognitive, and sensory development. Ages: 6–18 mos. $99; tinylove.com.
Bluey has velcro on the bottom of his hooves to keep him staying put while kids enjoy pull-along fun. Pull Bluey off the pull-along for cuddles and imaginative play. Ages: 12 mos. +. $38; habausa.com.
Learn & Groove Shakin’ Colors Maracas
This musical toy teaches colors, numbers, and music. Little ones can add rattling sounds to the songs that play, count from 1–10 with every shake, and press the six light-up buttons to hear color and instrument names. Choose from English and Spanish modes. Ages: 6 mos. +. $15; leapfrog.com.
baby shark tablet
Toddlers can emmulate parents and use this tablet that will teach them letters, words, spelling, the alphabet, word and image association, and musical instruments. Baby Shark will say, “You’re right” or “Try again.” And of course, kids can listen to the full-length hit Baby Shark song with volume control. Ages: 3 yrs. +. $20; wowwee.com.
Sensory Opaque Balls
Babies and young children will love and benefit from these bouncy sensory balls that enhance gross motor and tactile skills, and encourage crawling, grasping, and coordination. Ages: 6 mos. +. $15; edushape.com.
Latches & Doors Busy Board
Baby can develop their fine motor skills as they discover how to slide, press, twist, and turn to unlock and open the doors and windows of the colorful house to reveal pictures. Babies and toddlers can learn about numbers, animals and sing-along to the alphabet song—triggered by the push of a button. Ages: 12–36 mos. +. $25; vtechkids.com.
Farm World: Adventure Tree House
This fun tree house set has slide, tire swing, rope ladder, pully, two human figurines with moveable parts, four animals, and great accessories (28-pieces)—kids can enjoy loads of imaginative pretend play! Ages: 3–8 yrs. +. $70; schleich-s.com/en/US/.
Beaker Creatures Alien Experiment Lab
Make your own Reactor Pods, soak your creatures in slime, and more! Set of 18 pieces includes 2 Reactor Pods with mystery creatures, full-color experiment booklet with science facts, and hands-on science tools!. Ages: 5 yrs. +. $20; learningresources.com.
Air Warriors Mutator
Kids can expand the barrel, transform the blaster, and select distance, sending the PrecisePro darts up to 100 feet with extreme accuracy. Ages: 6 yrs. +. $35; buzzbeetoys.com.
Mini Acoustic Guitar
Using this three-string guitar, its accompanying app, and flashcards with chord diagrams a child can learn to play songs—not just scales or exercises—on day one. The guitar also sports classical nylon strings and perfect intonation! Ages: 3 +. $79; loogguitars.com.
Vulcan, the dragon has motion-sensing technology. Move Vulcan in different ways to make him react with big flapping wings and realistic sound effects. Clap once to hear him screech and growl. Clap twice to activate guard mode where his chest light will flash blue and red and his wild siren will sound! Ages: 5 yrs. +. $40; wowwee.com.
Kids use basic programming, geometry, math, and creativity to have Artie the robot make colorful designs. The easy-to-use drag and drop programming can be used on a Mac, PC, or tablet. Ages: 7 yrs. +. $70; educationalinsights.com.
Blaire Doll & Book
Meet Blaire, the 2019 Girl of the Year! She’s a chef-in-training, party planner, and chicken wrangler at her family’s farm and restaurant. The 18” Blaire doll has bright green eyes that open and close, and curly red hair. She has a huggable cloth body. Her movable head and limbs are made of smooth vinyl. She comes with the Blaire paperback book, plus her signature outfit. Ages 8 +. $98; americangirl.com.
Y’Art Craft Kit: Unicorn
Thread the Y’Art pen and color in the numbered areas—yarn magically clings to the Grip-N-Stick Y’Artboard as you swirl, twirl, and zig-zag to complete each unique design! Y‘Art is mess-free and OOPS-proof—if you make a mistake, simply lift up the yarn and reposition. Each canvas is pre-printed and numbered for kids to create vibrant frameable textile art. Ages: 8 yrs. +. $15; kahootztoys.com.
playmobil mars space station 9487
Kids can let their outerspace imaginations run wild using this set with two astronauts, robot, and a functioning double laser shooter, as well as various light and sound effects. The set comes with loads of equipment and accessories. Lift the top off for interior station play. Ages: 6 yrs. +. $80; playmobil.us.
Large Horse Stable with house & stable
This easy-to-assemble set comes with tons of accessories to spur imaginative play. Movable parts and interactive accessories in this extraordinary set make this a child horse lover’s dream come true. Ages: 5–12 yrs. +. $130; schleich-s.com/en/US/.
Team Sonic Racing
Speed through vibrant circuits from the Sonic Universe as Sonic, Shadow, Tails, and more while taking part in an electrifying multiplayer racing competition. Compete solo or play with up to 12 drivers online in various exhilarating single and multiplayer game modes, including Grand Prix, Time Trial, Team Adventure, and more. Available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch, and digital-only release on PC. Rated E. $40; sonicthehedgehog.com.
Set 3: Geared Machines
Using real tools and gear pieces, your young thinker will experiment with mechanical design using a maker tool, built-in hole punch, edge guide, screw gauge, and scorer to turn any material into parts and any parts into an all-new creation with unlimited building possibilities. Ages: 10 yrs. +. $20; meccano.com.
Electric Motors Catalyst
This open-ended play product allows your child to build robots, electric cars, legos, and motors and helps them problem solve when they get stuck. Ages: 8 +. $59; tinkeringlabs.com.
This electric-powered portable micro bike has a rigid steel frame, a BMX-style pneumatic front tire for shock absorption, and speeds up to nine mph! Ages 8 +. $160; razor.com.
Moving Creations with k’nex
Learn to apply STEM principles just like an engineer using the step-by-step illustrated guide with nine different builds, educational science content, 18 STEM experiments, and extra challenges to practice the scientific method. Comes in a travel-friendly storage box for fun on-the-go! Ages: 8–14 yrs. +. $40; hand2mind.com.
Poker meets trivia in this game with lively categories. You need an amusing mix of knowledge, quick thinking, and betting strategy; it’s the perfect game for tabletop lovers, trivia enthusiasts, and high rollers. Ages: 14 +. $35; graymattersgames.com.
This bow has patented loop-and-launch technology to launch arrows over 250 ft.! Ages: 14 yrs. +. $30; zing.toys.