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The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Awards

The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio was founded in 1989 as the only independent consumer review of children's media by child development experts Joanne Oppenheim and her daughter Stephanie Oppenheim. Oppenheim Toy Portfolio awards have become a benchmark of excellence with consumers, toy makers and the media.

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Crayola Mess-Free 2-in-1 Doodle Board

Sorry Charlie, this just doesn't work as well as the Spinmaster Aqua Doodle. You really have to press hard and hold the water filled pen upright to get the water to hit the pad. You can actually see the colors under the screen before you write and then what comes up is sort of lost in the haze. On top of that, the pad surface is very small and preschoolers benefit from big sweeping arm motions. The backside with the gel surface is also small and unremarkable.

Crayola Mess-Free Marker and Paper

We have seen reviews online about this product drying out quickly and the tip breaking off. We disagree with the age label of 12 months. However, we do think with adult supervision this may be a useful tool for kids with physical challenges. We are recommending it solely for that purpose.

Crayola My First Touch-Lights Pad

One of Crayola's mess-free toys. The screen changes colors and sings 6 songs as toddlers use their fingers or the stylus to make things happen. This does not replace the squishy joy of finger paints, but it does allow less clean-up time. The free form drawings are not permanent. Use the stylus sideways to clear the screen and start again. This takes 3 AA's and happyily--the sound can be turned off. Designed for tots of 24 months & up.

Crayola Super Tips Washable Markers

A super duper super tips marker set! 25 markers come in a see-through carrying case plus 40 pieces of paper for experimenting on. Their versatile tips draw thin and thick lines depending on how you hold them. 4 & up.

Crayola Washable Sidewalk Chalk Bright Colors

Just in time for outdoor fun, bright colors of sidewalk chalk for hopscotch games or sidewalk art shows. Colors include purple mountains majesty, granny smith apple green, orange, violet red, sepia, blue green and more. Really a new way to make their mark and it is labeled as washable. Comes in a big 48-piece pack or 24 or 12 pack. 4 & up.

Creativity For Kids Princess Music Box

Model: 1969000
PartNumber: 1969
Decorate your own music box castle, complete with a dancing princess and mirror inside! Accessorize your music with an assortment of flowers, stickers, glittery accents and a princess. Then wind it up and watch her twirl to "Music Box Dancer". The velvet-lined jewelry box measures 5.5"w x 4"h.

Creativity For Kids Rhinestone Rings

Model: 1886000
PartNumber: CFK1886
Make a dozen dimensional rings, perfect to wear and share. This is also a great party activity! Layer 90+ printed acetate and chipboard flourishes with rhinestones and glitter gel accents onto 12 metal ring bases. This kit includes a sweet 6" diameter foam flower ring holder.

Creativity for Kids Butterfly Necklaces

Model: 1198000
PartNumber: CFK1198
Create 6 beautiful butterfly necklaces. Simply layer acetate and chipboard butterflies onto soft felt. Add dangling flower and butterfly charms, glittery accents and rhinestones. Slide them onto multi-strand ribbon cord and your necklaces are ready to wear and share.

Creativity for Kids Color Changing Light

Model: 1798000
PartNumber: 1798
Follow the pattern guides or dream up your own designs. Fill in your art with translucent paints then finish it off with faceted gemstones. Includes plastic lamp shade, wooden base, paints, tracing paper, peel N' stick gemstones and LED color-changing lights. Lamp measures 11.5" H x 5"W. Operates on 2 AA batteries (not included)

Creativity For Kids Color Cord Bracelets

This craft kit involves macrame-type weaving with thick color cords that produce showy results that kids can enjoy wearing with pride. It comes with eight colors, buckles, stickers, scissors, glue, and clear instructions. There are enough supplies to make eight bracelets. A fun kit for play dates or sleep-over craft fun. Marked for 7 & up, but we think most kids of seven will need lots of help getting started and finishing up. We'd say it's a better choice for 8-9's.

Creativity For Kids Complete Paper Making Kit

Part Science/part art this is a kit with everything needed to turn old paper into new. Kids can make their own paper and decorate it for cards. Comes with shredded paper, but you can recycle the many kinds of paper that come into your home. The kit includes a basin, paper making tray, screens, sponge, paper punch, scissors, stencil and many more goodies. This is a kit that introduces how to create your own tags, cards and even jewelry.

Creativity for Kids Creepy Bugs Window Art

Model: 1955000
PartNumber: CFK1955
Ready for some creepy crafting? Create 3 bug-filled petri dishes and 10+ creepy window clings. Add some extra wow to your windows with glow-in-the-dark window paint. Complete set includes 24 plastic bugs, pattern sheet, 3 glow-in-the-dark window paints, 2 liner paints, 4 filler paints, 3 petri dishes and suction cups with hooks for display.

Creativity for Kids Fashion Bracelets

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years.

Creativity for Kids Fashion Macrame

Model: 1284000
PartNumber: 1284000
From bracelets to belts, this updated retro-craft, gives you everything you need to create trendy macrame fashion. Includes 70+ yards of cord! Step-by-step instructions will teach you how to weave colorful satin cord into a headband, key ring, lanyards, a belt and bracelet. Traditional craft made modern with fun colors, exciting projects and great add-on accessories.

Creativity for Kids Fun Felt Masks

Six colorful foam-backed masks are adjustable with elastic bands and ready for decorating. The kit includes a nice supply of felt stickers, self-adhesive rhinestones, and curly yarn. Little hands may need help with the peel and stick pieces, but get a real kick out of being able to design their own masks. 3 & up

Creativity for Kids Grow a Hedgehog

Paint the plastic hedgehog planter, paste on the wiggly eyes and bow. Now, you are ready to grow a hedgehog! Add and fill the planter tray with the supplied potting mix. Plant the seeds and keep them moist with the spray bottle until the wheatgrass seeds sprout in 3-5 days. A little art, a little science, and a lot of learning fun. Be forewarned: the box shows the hedgehog's face blushed with yellow, but there is no yellow in the kit. It comes with white, tan and black paint. Perhaps you can use a yellow marker to add this detail. 5 & up.

Creativity for Kids Mask Making Kit

With plastic mask bases, full face and smaller eye shape, kids can create 4-5 different masks with special plaster wrap. The kit comes with a variety of items for decorating the masks with feathers, tissue paper, paint ribbons, glitter and glue. This is apt to be a bit of a messy craft, so protect the surface with the plastic sheet, gloves and other items that come with the kit. You may want to add some newspaper as well. There will be a waiting time for the plaster strips to dry before the decorating can begin. Adult supervision is strongly recommended. That said, working with the plaster makes for an interesting craft experience. 7 & up.

Creativity for Kids Monster Trucks

Age: Early School Years.

Creativity for Kids Paracord Wristbands

Designed to appeal to boys, Paracord Wristbands involve macrame-type weaving with thick parachute cord. It comes with eight colors, buckles, stickers, scissors, glue, and clear instructions. There are enough supplies to make eight wristbands. Marked for 7 & up, but we think most boys of seven will not have the dexterity to do this. We'd say it's a better choice for 8-9's.

Creativity for Kids Sparkle Butterfly Purse

Model: 1684000
PartNumber: 1684
CREATIVITY FOR KIDS-Sparkle Butterfly Purse Kit. This is a quick; no sew craft for girls on the go! No mess; just peel and press. This package contains a 10-1/4x7-1/4 inch butterfly purse; self-adhesive rhinestones; sequin stickers; instructions and ideas. WARNING: Choking Hazard; small parts. Not for children under 3 years. Conforms to ASTM D 4236. Imported.

Creativity for Kids Stuck on Fashion Tote Bags

There is no right or wrong way to add the decorations to this big 15 inch by 9 inch bag. It comes with 200 peel and stick hearts, flowers and dots in multiple colors. The kit also includes a hang tag for the designer's name and s small change purse that goes inside. Speaking of the inside, there is a flat insert that goes in the base and helps the bag to stand up on a flat bottom. We think kids as young as 5 will enjoy this kit. It would also be a great kit to use with kids with special needs who will not need to cut or use glue to add the decorations. Use this to reinforce color names, sizes, and shape names. 5 & up.

Creativity for Kids Stunt Squadron

Finding craft projects for boys can be challenging. This kit comes with five foam planes that fly well both indoors and out. Before they start flying however, kids can decorate them with the metallic foil stickers and color-in stickers that can be customized with the 8 fine tipped mini-markers included. Each little plane is almost 7 x 7 inches big. Kids are likely to need help getting the stickers off the sheets, especially if they have no fingernails to get them started. That said, this is a fun kit for a play date or encouraging boys to use fine motor skills. 5 & up.

Creativity for Kids The Complete Paper Jewelry Set

Enough supplies for making over 200 paper beads! A splendid kit for learning the technique for making big and little paper beads with colorful patterned, solid colored papers. The kit includes two tools for making the beads, gel cord, paper flowers, seed beads, sequins, varnish, paint brush and stencils for making more bead papers. 7 & up.

Creativity For Kids X-Treme Sticker Maker Set

You get 40 feet of sticker tape and 80+ sticker designs. For family parties guests can go home with personalized stickers with velvet, metallic, and glitter finishes. Easy to operate with pleasing finished products that kids can do with independence, once they learn the way it works. Refill kits (9.99) are also available so this is not one of those disposable craft kits.You get 40 feet of sticker tape and 80+ sticker designs.

Creeper Sleeper Cozy

We love the many various forms of these cozy toys. Easy to grasp, soft and comforting. Look for the new Cozy sets that are coming soon with two super soft cozy dolls in a pack($20). That way, if one goes missing you have a replacement. Choose from the Bunny, Cat, or Dog Cozy. These are the kind of unstuffed easy-to-clutch lovies that babies often find a great comfort to hold as they make the transition to sleep.

Creeper Sleepers

Choose a white kitten in pink pajamas, a tan puppy in blue pajamas, or a white bunny in green jammies. We happen to think the bunny is the cutest of the trio, though it is much less green than it appears to be in the photo. These 13-inch dolls have a jolly jingle inside and are totally soft and silky to the touch. All stitched features and non-removable clothing. Baby safe and machine washable.

Cruise and Groove Ballapalooza

Finding toys that are just right for sitting up babies and toddlers can be difficult. The Cruise and Groove Ballapalooza fills the bill. You'll need space for this large "making something happen" toy that both older babies and toddlers will enjoy exploring. There are two different ways for the big balls to go from the top of the structure to the base. Of course at first, you'll be making it happen--but soon enough your toddler will enjoy making the balls drop again and again. The small green "gate" will be another aspect of the toy your child will enjoy pushing back and forth. There is also an arch for babies to go under. There is music that happily you can turn off and still enjoy the toy. A definite plus in our book. The tripod design of the base makes the toy steady but of course a cruising baby will still need a watchful hand. Our older toddler twin testers loved how the ball could be placed at the top so that it bounces off a platform onto the ramp: "high marks for innovative design." Comes with 8 oversized balls so if two end up under the sofa, you're not out of business.

Curious George Saves His Pennies

PartNumber: 9780547818535
When George decides to save up for that special red train in the toy store, he doesnt realize how long it will takeor how hard hell have to work for his money. But when the time finally arrives to take his very full piggy bank to the toy storesurprise!George loses it. Can this day, and Georges hard-won earnings, be saved?

For more monkey fun, investigate and discover all the latest on Curious George books, promotions, games, activities, and more!

Curious George Says Thank You

PartNumber: 9780547818528

George is thrilled to get a thank-you card in the mail from his friend Betsy. It makes him want to send thank-you cards to everyone he knows. Who can he thank? George tries to remember all the people who have been nice to him, but tracking them down to deliver his homemade cards soon becomes a challenge. Now published for the first time as a stand-alone title, this lighthearted lesson in good manners includes two perforated Curious George thank-you cards for personalizing.

For more monkey fun, investigate and discover all the latest on Curious George, books, promotions, games, activities, and more!

Deluxe Roominate

Model: R2002
PartNumber: R2002
This amazing building set helps kids can gain valuable STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) skills while having imaginative fun! Much more than a dollhouse, Roominate is an interactive design and construction kit. Young builders design and build the structure of their choice, choosing features such as building height, room layouts, staircases, balconies, furniture, and even a working elevator or merry-go-round. Deluxe kit includes four wall/floor panels (two 9" x 6" and two 6" x 6" panels); 48 modular building pieces (assorted teal, light blue, and yellow); 16 connectors; one motor; one light; two switches; two battery packs (requires four AAA batteries total, not included); 20 sheets of colored paper; two rolls of shiny tape; 24" of string; four colors of felt; and eight sheets of stickers. Compatible with other Roominate sets. All products meet ASTM F963 toy safety specifications. Ages 6 years and up. Kit measures 14" x 13.5" x 12". Imported.


What's even more exciting to preschoolers than seeing big machines that build things? Watching
the massive ones that tear them down!

Crush the stone. Crush the stone.
Chip and grind and munch.
Make new concrete from the old.
Whirr! Churr! Crunch!

From the huge crane with a swinging ball (crack! ) to the toothy jaws that ram the walls (thwock! ), this rambunctious demolition, reverberating with sound words, is guaranteed to have small kids rapt. Bright spreads showcase the gargantuan machines in all their glory, and a pictorial glossary explains what each one can do.

Dicecapades! Dice T, A Dice Rolling Crossword Game

We see a lot of word games and this one has a fresh spin on spelling and word fun. Each player draws three cards and rolls a set of alphabet cubes. The object is to arrange the cubes on the cards and tally your score. Everyone plays at the same time and scoring depends in part on the luck of the cards you draw and their point value and the player's skill in using the cards to advantage. Beginners may need to learn strategies for moving their cubes to get the best play value. This can be played by a mixed age group or include beginners as partners to more advanced players till they learn the game. For 2-4 players. 8 and up

Digger, Dozer, Dumper

An entertaining collection of rhymes introduce truck lovers to more than a dozen vehicles and the work they do. Told in light verse with lively illustrations, there is plenty of action as a garbage truck, dump truck, backhoe and others push, bang, and shake. 3 & up.

Diggin Boxset Castle

Another of the mini play settings from Diggin that is portable and small but pretty complete. You open the wooden box and all the pieces are inside ready to set up in a variety of ways. The castle is painted like gray stone. It comes with 2 wooden knight figures, 1 princess, 1 dragon and a catapult. Castle folds up and is easy to set up. When closed, it is easy to take with you anywhere, and has a handle on the top. Very nice quality. Perfect take along to Gram's house or fun to find there for pretend play. 3 & up.

Diggin Boxset Dollhouse

A very compact dollhouse that is really a mini house with two floors, a staircase that flips down so two play figures can climb up and down. There's a sink, a table, a little piano, a swing, a bed, and a tub. A pink wooden box with furnishings inside and a handle on top to tote it about. Perfect take along to Gram's house or fun to find there for pretend play. 3 & up.

Dino Construction Boom Brachiosaurus Backhoe

Construction trucks and dinosaurs--what a winning combination! This is one of a collection of dino trucks, made without metal parts so it will work in the sandbox, at the beach or indoors with blocks. Boom Brachiosaurus Backhoe has a telescoping neck and scooping tail. It has a cab that rotates 360 degrees. A long neck and movable jaw are ready to scoop up sand, snow, Lego bricks, or whatever gets in its path. With read rollers, it leaves dino footprints in the sand and needs no batteries. Also fun, T-Top the Bulldozer, Spike the Ankylosaurus Steam Roller, and Wrecker the T-Rex Skid Loader. 3 & up.
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