Award Category: Arts & Crafts

Whether it’s a 2D or a 3D creation, we know kids love arts and crafts and our testers have been no exception.  This year our awards go to…

WINNER

Sands Alive Glow

By: John Adams Leisure

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Age: 3 years+

RRP: £24.99

Amazing glow in the dark shapes can be made using Sands Alive Glow.  Moulding 3D shapes with super soft sand, then write with light directly onto the sand or highlight areas for a glowing effect.  Includes a super charger UV pen light, five mini topper moulds and play tray.

More information at: www.johnadams.co.uk/brands/playstuff-sands-alive

Available from: Smyths Toys

Buy now from –  https://www.amazon.co.uk/John-Adams-Sands

What the testers said “My little tester loved playing with Sands Alive Glow, and I was surprised at how mess-free it was, the play tray keeps it all in one place so easy tidying up.”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

eZee Beads Studio Set

By: John Adams Leisure

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Age: 5 years+

RRP: £19.99

Create lots of bead shapes with the eZee Beads Studio. Follow the design sheets or make your own creations. Peg the beads onto the tray, spray with water, leave to dry then carefully remove the completed design!  Safe fun.

More information at: www.johnadams.co.uk/brands/ezee-beads

Available from: Argos

Buy now from – https://www.amazon.co.uk/John-Adams-Beads-Studio

What the testers said “This is a fantastic product. No heat needed to ‘fix’ them together, just water, we enjoyed making things together then safely allowing them to dry.”

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Award Category: Electronic Toys

Always a wide variety in this section, who knows what electronic toy will be thought of next.  Let’s see what our testers think this year.

WINNER

Kidi Super Star

By: VTech Electronics

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Age: 6 years+

RRP: £49.99

Sing to your favourite tunes using Music Magic to reduce the vocals and hear your own.  Change the sound of your voice by using the effects, choose lighting styles for the disco lights… Play fun games including tricky tongue twisters and rhythmic games.  Record yourself to play to friends and family.

More information at: www.vtech.co.uk

Available from: The Entertainer

Buy now from –  www.argos.co.uk

What the testers said “Poppy loved hearing her own voice and changing it to robotic, echo etc! It’s the first thing she goes to when she wakes up and comes in from school – she adores it! ”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

My First Flyer

By: Little Tikes

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Age: 3 years+

RRP: £34.99

My First Flyer offers little ones the chance to master a new remote control toy.  The easy to control pad makes it simple to learn and easier to fly than traditional remote control helicopters.

More information at: www.littletikes.co.uk/my-first-flyer

Available from: Argos

Buy now from – www.littletikes.co.uk/my-first-flyer

What the testers said “What a great idea!  My little boy did need some help, but soon got the hang of the control pad. I like this a lot.”

 

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Award Category: Educational Toys

The educational toy section in the Rainbow Toy Awards is looked at by teaching professionals and where possible tested by children in an educational setting.

WINNER

Wooden Kitchen – Red

By: ALDI

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Age: 3 years+

RRP: £30

This sturdy wooden kitchen encourages role play and social interaction to develop communication, imagination and creativity.  The set includes; microwave, oven and bob, work space and shelving, an educational clock, sink chalkboard and clickable, moving dials.

More information at: www.aldi.co.uk

Available from: ALDI

Buy now from –  https://www.aldi.co.uk/large-red-wooden-kitchen

What the testers said “I have a mixed class of girls and boys and both enjoyed playing with this kitchen.  It was sturdy and well made.  A very nice price point in comparison with other wooden kitchens! ”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

LeapStart

By: LeapFrog

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Age: 2 – 7 years

RRP: £34.99

LeapStart is an interactive learning system for preschool and primary age children.  The system has a portable kid-tough design with an easy grip stylus. Engaging children in the enjoyable books that teach everything from counting to problem solving to social skills.

More information at: www.leapfrog.com

Available from: Argos

Buy now from – https://www.amazon.co.uk/LeapFrog-LeapStart

What the testers said “Love love Leapfrog!  Their toys are always very well made and hugely educational – the LeapStart was as good as we anticipated.”

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Award Category: Imaginative Play

Imaginative play is so important in a child’s development.  Learning cause and effect and how things work is all done through well planned play.  Here are the best according to our testers.

WINNER

Pirate Fort Superset

By: Playmobil

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Age: 4-10 years

RRP: £19.99

This is a secret hideout for little rebels to stash their treasure. Children build the set themselves, designed to develop important motor skills whilst encouraging imaginative play.

More information at: www.playmobil.co.uk/pirate-fort-superset/6146.html

Available from: Argos

Buy now from –  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Playmobil

What the testers said “Playmobil is such a recognised brand we were delighted to test.  This set was nicely packaged easy for us to put together and has been played with every day since.”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Fire Station Train Set

By: BigJigs Toys

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Age: 12 months+

RRP: £39.99

Race to the rescue with this wooden fire station train set.  Speed through the tunnel, race to the emergency and fight that fire!  Encouraging imagination, dexterity and coordination.

More information at: www.bigjigstoys.co.uk/fire-station-train-set

Buy now from – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bigjigs-Rail-Fire-Station-Train

What the testers said “I love giving wooden toys to my child, they are traditional and fun.  You really can’t beat this one from BigJigs.”

 

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Award Category: PreSchool Toys

PreSchool toys should include an element of learning along with being loads of fun, so let’s see who has won in this category.

WINNER

Toot Toot Friends Kingdom Enchanted Princess Palace

By: VTech Electronics

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Age: 1-5 years

RRP: £52.99

Join Princess Darla in the beautifully decorated palace where she can invite her other kingdom friends.  The palace comes to life when the characters are placed on the five MagicPoint locations encouraging discover and exploration.

More information at: www.vtech.co.uk

Available from: Selfridges

Buy now from –  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Toot-Toot-Friends-Enchanted-Princess-Playset

What the testers said “The whole thing looked bright, large and value for money. My little ones eyes lit up and she shrieked when she saw this! ”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Light n Go Activity Garden Treehouse

By: Little Tikes

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Age: 6m – 3years

RRP: £89.99

The Activity Garden Treehouse is a premier playset with many features that will grow with your little one. They will love the magic lantern, which includes three modes of play; Explore Colour Dance Party and Collect Fireflies.  Twinkling lights and fun music all add to the fun.

More information at: www.littletikes.co.uk/activity-garden-treehouse.html

Available from: Tesco

Buy now from – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Tikes-Light-Go-Treehouse

What the testers said “I don’t think we’ve discovered all 80 activities yet, but we have had so much fun so far.  Lovely looking product.”

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Award Category: Games & Puzzles – Older Children and Adults

…and so for the older children and big kids…

WINNER

Bananagrams Party

By: Bananagrams

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Age: 10 years+

RRP: £14.99

This exciting new addition to the Bananagrams family features 13 party power tiles.  Each player races to complete their word grids but now faces challenges and forfeits throughout the game – Energising the game and adding a whole new dimension!

More information at: www.bananagrams.com

Available from: Argos

Buy now from –  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bananagrams

What the testers said “A well-made game for a very good price.  Educational and enjoyable it held their attention and we think it will last forever!. ”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Accentuate

By: Accentuate

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Age: 16 years+

RRP: £19.99

Accentuate is the hilarious guess-the-accent party game featuring 90 different quotes from famous movies – players pick a card then read the movie quote aloud in a randomly selected accent.  Team mates have just 30 seconds to guess the accent and can earn further points by guessing the movie too.

More information at: www.accentuategames.com

Available from: John Lewis

Buy now from – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bananagrams

What the testers said “The game is quite hard and you may need to be a movie buff, but we enjoyed playing and loved the minimal packaging too.”

 

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Award Category: Games & Puzzles – The Young Ones

We always split the games & puzzles category, as there is too much of a range for certain products to go up against each other.  This first sections looks at games & puzzles suitable for younger children.

WINNER

Timeline British History

By: Esdevium Games

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Age: 8 years+

RRP: £13.99

Place the cards in the historical timeline then see if you’re right. Correctly play all of your cards to win!  The 110 British Timeline cards can also be combined with other Timeline sets.

More information at: www.timelinegame.co.uk

Available from: Waterstones

Buy now from –  https://www.theboardgamehut.co.uk

What the testers said “It’s not often a game can challenge children and adults in the same game, this one did!  We all learned rather a lot too.”

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Rummikub Twist

By: John Adams Leisure

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Age: 7 years+

RRP: £29.99

This is a family favourite with a surprising new twist! Rummikub Twist includes 3 new jokers to add more strategy, fun and pace to the gameplay. Colour change joker, mirror joker and double joker all join the standard joker.  The Twist also features a fresh new look and feel with panoramic racks and a new tile design and shape.

More information at: www.johnadams.co.uk/brands/rummikub

Available from: John Lewis

Buy now from – www.johnadams.co.uk/brands/rummikub

What the testers said “We are already a family if Rummikub fans, so this was bound to please. We love the new look and feel to the game and the addition of more jokers certainly make the game more interesting and skillful.”

 

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