Our sister publication, Minnesota Parent, recently tested 150 toys from local and national toy stores with 28 kids and 17 parents/grandparents. Here are just a few of their top picks!
AGES 1 AND UP
This set of three silicone spinners for the baby and toddler set comes with suction cups, so you can pop one of these in front of Baby on a highchair tray, a car window, the side of the bathtub, the floor — you name it. And they’re approved as safe to use as teethers, too!
AGES 1 TO 5
Would this Vespa-esque rider from Ambosstoys be all form and no function? Quite the opposite! During the toy test, it offered kids a super-smooth ride and cornered like a champ even in busy, tight spaces. It was by far the most popular ride-on toy and parents didn’t blink at the price.
It comes in orange, pink, blue, yellow and mint green, too.
WONDERHOOD GRAND HOTEL
This creative building set includes 24 glossy plastic building panels (5 inches square, washable and double-sided), plus a three-story elevator, two figurines and design challenges.
Where to buy locally: Legacy Toys (Edina location only)
MAD MATTR QUANTUM TOOLBOX
Mad Mattr’s granular texture reminded us of Kinetic Sand, but its moldability and smooth feel brought back memories of PlayDoh. This kit helped kids shape the material into bricks and shapes to build structures.
Playmobil: The Movie sets will abound this season after the summer release of the film. But this cute and quaint building set is timeless and ideal for imaginative play. It even includes miniature working cookie cutters.
AGE 14 AND UP
UGEARS MECHANICAL MODELS
This steam-punk-inspired 3D assembly kit does it all: It’s a puzzle; it’s art; it’s an educational toy. One of many models from Ugears, this bike features a rubber band motor that makes the motorcycle ride as far as 10 feet in one winding.
LEARN MORE: See the November issue of Minnesota Parent or mnparent.com for
the full toy test details, including lists of board games, stocking stuffers and more. KARE 11 TV will also be airing stories about the test on KARE 11 Sunrise with Gia Vang
from 6–7 a.m. Nov. 4–12.