This year, we’ve gathered up a collection of toys that offer everything from something to snuggle, things to collect, items to ride, games to play, to kits that can teach STEM skills. Here are some of the coolest toys we’ve found, ready to light up someone special’s holidays! Welcome to our 2021 Holiday Toy Gift Guide!
When I was a kid, I used to disassemble watches, calculators, and other small devices to find out how they worked. My son is also fascinated by how things work, so we were super excited to check out the Circuitmess Nibble and build our own handheld video game system!
When I was a child, if I wanted to sketch something, it meant finding a piece of paper and grabbing a pencil or pen. Kids today can use the Oaxis myFirst Sketch Book to get a pressure-sensitive pen on paper experience while drawing on their own tablet; their creations are instantly digitized, and up to 1000 drawings can be saved on the device.
If you’ve never experienced the frustration and heartache of consoling a child who’s lost their favorite plush toy — with you having no idea where the toy was lost or how to find it — then you are genuinely lucky. But if you’ve been through it, you know that pain. The popular plush toy GUND has a new initiative with Chipolo that should help keep that from happening, though.
HEYKUBE is the first all-in-one programmable smart cube marketed to the masses. The possibilities are endless with the option to create your own games, play others, or finally solve the classic cube puzzle.
There were few things more exciting when I was a kid than a fresh jar of play dough. Land of Dough has brought that feeling to the next level with their beautifully designed, all-natural dough cups that are themed and include every kid’s favorite, glitter. These layered dough cups start at $12, and we think they’re worth every penny.
Mongoose has just released its first balance bike in 10 years, and we were one of the lucky few to get to test it out before launch. The Mongoose Title Tot is a balance bike designed to help kids 2 years and older build their confidence before riding their first bike.
There have been few toys that have drawn neighborhood jealousy as much as the Rollplay Nighthawk NexGen we’ve been testing. It’s an incredibly fun electric ride-on toy with a powerful 24V battery that powers a single rear wheel and is steered by your child by leaning side to side.
SKOOG, a media-tech company with the mission to enrich children’s lives through creative and immersive play, has announced a global partnership with Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street, to introduce a new interactive platform that merges tactile technology with the huge content library featuring Sesame Street characters.
At my house, our kids watch enough TV, so when it comes to playtime, we try to look for screen-free toys. Jogoball from Yogibo is a new toy that combines a Bluetooth speaker, motion recognition, and smart audio to provide fun for the whole family. Pre-orders are already live, and orders will start shipping on November 5th.
There’s a reason I try to wait until I really know a product to do a review — sometimes it takes a little while to grasp what makes something truly succeed or fail. If you asked me three weeks ago what my son and I thought of the K’Nex Architecture Eiffel Tower, you’d want to duck immediately. Now? We can’t wait for more!
Everyone knows that kids love ride-on toys, and Kid Trax is raising the bar with their innovative, lifelike electric replicas. Kid Trax was kind enough to send us their CAT Mining Dump Truck, and our kids are absolutely obsessed. With two seats and a max weight of 130 pounds, two kids can ride at the same time!
We’re already fans of Boogie Board products, so we were excited to get our hands on their new Magic Sketch kit for kids. It’s an electronic art kit on which your kids can doodle, trace, learn, and more in rainbow colors with zero mess.
Kids these days have a ton of options to supplement their formal education; many more that I had when I was a child! But your options are limited if you’re trying to avoid handing your child a device with a screen. Enter the Matatalab Coding Set, a screen-free kit that helps your child develop cognitive abilities, imagination, and coding skills.
I spent some quality time at the 2020 New York Toy Fair; while it may be a bit smaller than CES, it is no less overwhelming. There was so much to see that it was almost impossible to settle on this year’s ‘Best of’, but we persevered and made our selections. Here’s a look at our picks.
Another CES has come and gone, and as we have in the past, we’ve sorted through hundreds upon hundreds of products to bring you the ones we thought were the most exciting, useful, disruptive, or clever. Take a look at our Best of CES 2020 award picks, and see what you think!
Right in time for Hour of Code Week 2019, Mattel is launching a new educational dimension to one of this year’s hottest holiday toy launches, Hot Wheels id. Hot Wheels id melds physical and digital play using NFC-enabled Hot Wheels cars to allow kids to test their cars in a virtual environment, including speed challenges and track building.
My son is 6, and his favorite subject in school is coding — mostly because he gets to play with little robots, but it’s still a very worthwhile and useful life skill. He also loves all things Star Wars, so when Kano offered us the chance to review their Star Wars The Force Coding Kit, we had to give it a shot!
Creating with plastic building blocks is fun, but building with Metomics Metal Designer Blocks looks like it will take creativity to the next level with gorgeous and long-lasting anodized aluminum designer blocks!
UBTech makes a huge variety of codable robots that teach kids all about STEM in a fun and exciting way. Their latest is the MeeBot 2.0, an exclusive with Apple Stores complete with LED lights and even dance moves!
Coding is becoming as integral a part of a kids education as math and reading. It teaches logic and helps kids better understand how the world of technology they’re surrounded by actually works. Also, Star Wars is objectively awesome and every kid wishes they had the Force. Kano is tapping into that with their Star Wars The Force Coding kit!