, 2022-11-13 02:00:00,
As a mom of four, I’m well aware that toys are an amazing asset. They help your little ones learn, keep them occupied for solid stretches of time and even make it easy for you to join in on the fun.
But as we all know, some toys capture kids’ attention and imagination, while others end up collecting dust in a closet. For a short list of the true kid-pleasers, we tapped top experts to find the standouts for the toddler to teen years. Whether you’re shopping for your own child, a loved one or for a birthday gift, these are the kid-tested toys that are sure to be a hit.
Blocks that travel easily
Tegu’s wooden block set comes highly recommended by several experts. Pediatrician Robert Keder, M.D., developmental behavior specialist at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Hartford, Conn., reports that out of all the toys in his office, this is the one kids play with the most. The wooden blocks are magnetic and easy to grip, so they make building easy for young kids. This particular set includes wheels for creating vehicles too. Educational consultant Wendy Levey, based in New York City, likes that the set “improves motor skills and teaches organization by stacking, sorting and problem-solving.” Plus, it’s perfect for keeping kids entertained on the road or at a restaurant.
An animal playhouse that’s good for the environment
This animal care station has a little of everything to keep kids coming back, says New York City-based Christopher Byrne, aka The Toy Guy. Byrne appreciates that this set inspires imaginative play, thanks to an “animal clinic” with enclosures, an exam area and even a heat lamp that lights up. Knowledge cards sync up with the Wiltopia app, where kids can learn more about the animals they’re caring for. “It’s a great line, all about nature and environmental play,” says Byrne, noting the kit is made with more than 80% sustainable materials.
Cool discs that can create anything
You get a lot for a little with Brain Flakes—namely, bright colored discs that interlock to create anything from rainbows and planes to robots and ferris wheels. It’s a favorite of Mandy Merrell and Mel Craig, toy researchers and founders of the Toy Testing Sisters in Salt Lake City, Utah, because “kids love using their imaginations and problem-solving skills to build incredible objects.” Worth…
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