Introduce your preschooler to the principles of engineering with this 97-piece science kit. Kids can follow a storybook adventure and build amusement park rides (including a Ferris wheel, bumper cars, a roller coaster and a log flume ride) along the way. The colorful plastic building pieces were specially designed for little hands, and the kit helps children develop fine motors skills, visual-spatial skills and reasoning techniques. Kids will also learn basic math, science and physics lessons as they build their amusement parks. (Recommended ages: 3+ years)
The first phase of block play is what MacDonald terms "tote and carry." Your 2-year-old is doing little or no building, but she can pile, haul, and drop -- and in the process learn about weight, stability, and balance. Of course a toddler's favorite lesson will probably be the noisiest and messiest: gravity. To the outrage of many an older sibling, toddlers learn quickly that what goes up must come down -- and that knocking down blocks brings an exciting reward. "Children like order and structure, but at a young age they love to create chaos even more," says MacDonald. "Just by stacking one block on top of another, they learn that unstable things fall down, while stable things don't."
Microsoft’s Xbox Project Scorpio is the world’s most powerful gaming console ever. It’s the hotly anticipated successor to the Xbox One. It features 6 teraflops of graphical processing power, true high-fidelity 4K gaming, and best of all, it’s fully compatible with Xbox One games and accessories. Microsoft’s next console also marks the beginning of a generationless era of gaming. Play all your favorite Xbox games optimized for 4K HDTVs. Experience silky smooth frame rates and awesome online multiplayer experiences. Are you ready to experience the best in gaming with Project Scorpio? Coming Holiday 2017. Reserve yours today!
Looking for a super fun playset for playing out your PJ Masks adventures? The PJ Masks Headquarters Playset is one of our favorite PJ Masks playsets. It offers 2-sided play and features interactive lights, sounds, and music to bring the action to life. It even has a working elevator and includes one 3-inch Catboy figure. The set is compatible with your 3-inch figures and vehicles. How cool is that? Kids will love recreating their own little adventures with the PJ Masks characters.
Put away the clunky expensive VR headset, Merge is bringing affordable “virtual reality” to the toy market. Blending digital and physical play, the Merge 6DoF blaster immerses you in the game using just your phone and a blaster accessory. It delivers six degrees of freedom, meaning it tracks your position and orientation so when you move, it moves. It’s something you have to experience. The tracking felt surprisingly accurate, and it was a pure blast to play without any heavy headsets or cumbersome wires. There are many AR toys, but hands-down, it’s the best VR/AR toy we have seen and our Toy of the Show.
Got a little one who loves helping you cook? This set makes one of the best Christmas gifts for budding chefs. Their imaginations will thrive as they bake, decorate, count and sort these cookies in preparation for the block's next fun tea party. All cookies fit into a handy, dandy tube, so you can throw them in your purse for an easy on-the-go toy. ($10; macys.com)

In addition to being safe (see Safety and children's toys below), good toys for young children need to match their stages of development and emerging abilities. Many safe and appropriate play materials are free items typically found at home. Cardboard boxes, plastic bowls and lids, collections of plastic bottle caps, and other “treasures” can be used in more than one way by children of different ages. As you read the following lists of suggested toys for children of different ages, keep in mind that each child develops at an individual pace. Items on one list—as long as they are safe—can be good choices for children who are younger and older than the suggested age range.

Paw Patrol fans can spark their imaginations and go on exciting, fun-filled adventures in Adventure Bay with these Paw Patrol mini vehicles. The vehicles are TV show-accurate, heightening your child’s play experience. What’s cool? These mini vehicles can connect to your Ultimate Rescue Themed Vehicles. Collect all your favorites to recreate fantastic rescue missions just like in the show.


The Wonder Crew Buddies are fantastic new action dolls. They merge action figures with the doll and stuffed animal play. Now kids get the best of both worlds – action, empathy, and nurturing play. Best of all, boys or girls can enjoy them and take them on fascinating adventures. They inspire endless creativity and spark the imagination. And your little kiddo can join in the fun with their own matching superhero mask and costume!
Want to make a touchscreen computer? The Kano Computer Kit Touch lets kids make their own tablet. What’s cool is that you can build it yourself with the included step-by-step guide. There are over 100 creative challenges and you’ll even learn to code. You can make art, games, music, and even hack Minecraft. It’s the perfect gift for budding techies.
Preschoolers and toddlers will love My 1st Wagon from Radio Flyer. While it’s not designed for sitting on, it’s designed to be safe for kids with no sharp edges and is perfect for transporting toys and more. You can even use it as a gift basket wagon for kids. What’s cool? The handle and steering actually are functional so you can take it on fun adventures to the park, around the house, or in the backyard.
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Babies love taking toys apart and putting them back together. They also like to "dump and fill" putting toys in and out of containers over and over again. Look for nesting and stacking cups, as well as soft toys that attach and un-attach with velcro. These important toys help babies learn to develop their problem solving and fine motor skills, while they practice over and over again.
Young toddlers who are starting to practice their walking skills will get a kick out of this push toy and activity walker. For ones who aren't quite walking, this toy will help them learn to keep their balance. For when they are officially on the move, they'll love to zoom this around the house (and probably into your walls and furniture, so watch out!).
Toy shopping can be similar. The makers of baby products can slap an "educational" or "developmental" label on their toys without oversight and certainly without any research or evidence to support their claims. And you may be surprised to find that many of the most popular toys on the market aren't the most beneficial for development. Luckily, most baby toys aren't harmful, per se, but there are certainly some that are more developmentally helpful for our kiddos than others.
Push the buttons on BeatBo’s belly or feet to trigger a medley of toe-tapping songs. There’s even a baby DJ option where you can record short phrases for BeatBo to remix into a dance tune — great for a tot who’s beginning to discover music. “Young kids love to make music and noises and exploring things, like, Can I make it softer? Can I make it louder?” Lytle says. “What happens when I hit it harder? Does that make it louder? That’s a really interesting learning process.”
Did you know that Elmer’s Liquid School Glue can also be used to make slime? While many people think of glue for their arts and crafts projects, it actually is a key ingredient when making slime. It makes wonderful slime that is nice and stretchy with fantastic consistency and it’s super satisfying to play with. Now you can make all types of slime until your heart’s content!
Everything about babies is so exciting, but when it comes to toys that’s when shopping really gets fun. However, every toy is not ideal for babies and it’s hard to know which toys are developmentally appropriate, fun and safe for infants. At Fat Brain Toys, we know there is a smarter way to play when it comes to toys for babies. We collected data on the most popular baby toys as well as the toys our customers purchase frequently to target the best baby toys for 2018. Since we understand babies explore with their mouths, we make certain the toys that make our best of list are completely safe for babies. So, parents, caregivers, friends and relatives can feel god about choosing a toy from our top baby toys of the year.
Welp, Christmas is just around the corner (hooray?) and your kids are already asking for everything under the sun, so we’ve narrowed down their toy demands to the ones that are the most popular and must-haves of the 2018 season.  Why not stay on-trend and ahead of the curve all at the same time? Plus, if you’re running out of ideas on what toys to gift them this season (just in case you’re totally over giving them all kinds of candy), their birthday (geesh didn’t they just have one of those?!) or just want to pick them up a little something for no reason at all, we’ve got you covered.
The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best kids’ items, baby shower gifts, gifts for a 1-year-old, 3-year-old, 4-year-old, 10-year-old, and patriarchy-defeating books. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.
Super Mario Odyssey is the big holiday title for the Nintendo Switch. It’s a hotly anticipated title that will allow gamers to play Mario on the big screen as well as on the go for the very first time. The game will return to the sandbox-style gameplay made popular by Super Mario 64. Fans are eagerly awaiting to get their hands on what could the best Mario since Mario 64 and the Galaxy series. Expect one incredible adventure traversing through new worlds and expect a few new moves and surprises along the way.
“There’s actually been some research looking at kids using blocks with parents and it turns out that building blocks are a really good way to promote early STEM and math skills,” says Lytle. “Think about the language you’re using when you’re building blocks: bigger, smaller, shorter, taller. If you have kids and parents building bridges with blocks together, you’ll start talking about concepts like stability. Even if you don’t actually use the word stability, you’re still talking about complex engineering concepts.” The pastel-hued wooden building blocks in this 14-piece set have built-in magnets, so they won’t fall down as easily as regular blocks. Plus, they’re made in Honduras, with the goal of creating living-wage jobs for Tegucigalpa residents.
Seriously how cute is Ricky the trick loving pup!?  He’s new from FurReal and totally interactive.  In fact, not only does he respond with over 100 sounds and motions, but he actually performs the cutest little tricks ever like flipping his bone, ‘shaking paws’ with you, barking a catchy little tune, and so much more!  Did we mention he’s affectionate too?  The kiddos can help ‘train’ him and reward him with treats.  When they do that, Ricky the pup will eat them and, well, when they pet his back he’ll poop them out.  This one comes with 18 dog treats, a treat pouch, and a fun little bone toy too!  We love him!
Microsoft’s Xbox Project Scorpio is the world’s most powerful gaming console ever. It’s the hotly anticipated successor to the Xbox One. It features 6 teraflops of graphical processing power, true high-fidelity 4K gaming, and best of all, it’s fully compatible with Xbox One games and accessories. Microsoft’s next console also marks the beginning of a generationless era of gaming. Play all your favorite Xbox games optimized for 4K HDTVs. Experience silky smooth frame rates and awesome online multiplayer experiences. Are you ready to experience the best in gaming with Project Scorpio? Coming Holiday 2017. Reserve yours today!
Picking up a few toys specifically created for infants is not only a great way to spend time with your baby and nurture your growing bond, but depending on the type of toys you pick out, you can also help with your baby’s development and really start honing in on his specific interests. Here are a few of the best infant toys out there based on what you’re specifically looking to do with that toy.
What’s better than Louis Vuitton bag? A Pooey Puitton bag! Made out of poop, this might be the most stylish poop you have ever seen. Inside it contains all types of supplies for making unicorn slime poop from beads to slime powered bottles. There’s an instruction manual that walks kids through the many slime recipes. It even contains containers inside for storing slime. The best part? It comes with an exclusive Poopsey character with groovy 2019 glasses.
One of the more interesting and creative sets for younger kids is the Magformers Sky Track Adventure Set. Magformers is the leader in magnetic construction toys, which are perfect for introducing children to STEM concepts like math and engineering as well as developing spatial reasoning, critical thinking and creativity skills. What’s cool is that the Sky Track Adventure set allows kids to build several cool configurations and race a battery-powered rocket along the track.

By now you've probably had it drilled into your head that whole or real foods - usually from the perimeter of the grocery store - are healthier for your family than processed, refined foods from a box. But grocery shopping can be confusing because many of those processed food boxes (filled with easy, convenient food for busy families) claim to be "natural", "organic", "whole grain" and more. 

The DeltaBurst is a 3-round burst car beam blaster. The accuracy and range are in line with the AlphaPoint. The blaster features built-in haptic feedback as well as AR to increase your sense of immersion. What’s cool? It feels like something right out of Halo. Although you can use this blaster without the app, it does enhance your experience. The app offers a leaderboard along with other stats like accuracy. Upgrades can be performed via in-game tokens. Overall, Nerf has done a great job of delivering a captivating laser tag experience.


Now this is one of the biggest surprises that’s most anticipated for the upcoming holiday season!  You can officially order it right now, since it’s finally been released to the public!  This one comes with over 60 new never-before-seen surprises, all with exclusive dolls and the cutest accessories ever!  This is the perfect one to add to their collection and, hopefully, you can get your hands on it before it’s gone! Learn more here!
These multi-textured balls are designed to acclimate your baby to different textures and stimulate her sensory skills. They’re made of a BPA material so you needn’t worry when they pop them in their mouths, and they’re large enough you won’t need to worry about chocking hazards, either. The different sizes, shapes, and textures also promote baby’s tactile development.
"It's a myth that babies can't play, even if they don't seem to be 'doing much' yet—they’re still taking everything in,” says Amanda Gummer, a research psychologist specializing in child development and spokesperson for the Genius of Play, a movement to raise awareness about the importance of play in kids’ lives. “Playing is a great way for parents and caregivers to build that vital bond with their baby, while sensory stimulations helps baby's brain grow.”
For the kid who loves to cook, why not get them a kitchen of their own? This gorgeous kitchen set—one of our favorite Christmas gifts for kids—boasts incredible attention to detail. It features fridge, freezer, microwave and cabinet doors that open and close, oven knobs that click and turn and a rack that slides out, raised burners, a cordless phone and a removable sink for easy cleanup.
If you’re looking to give baby a Christmas gift that is cuddly and soft like a stuffed animal or plush pet, look no further than the West Elm x pbk Plush Animal Thumbies. They come in four different adorable animal faces and help baby self-soothe thanks to the soft polyester sherpa and faux fleece. Babies love to cuddle up with these thumbies everywhere they go, which is a-OK with parents since the blankets can easily go in the wash for a little refresh when necessary. ($16; potterybarnkids.com)
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