Hot Dots Jr.Ace the Talking Teaching Dog, Educational Insights Inc., $39.99; age 3 and up. The electronic dog supports learning by pointing to correct answers on cards that focus on fundamental literacy skills. She lights up, gives a verbal good job and occasionally vibrates for added kudos.
MobiGo Touch Learning System, VTech, $59.99; age 3 and up. Edu-gaming at its finest! Touch screen and slide-out keyboard accompany a clear voice and excellent video quality. Insert cartridge and start playing and learning. More games can be downloaded from the website.
Sing-a-ma-jigs!, Fisher-Price, $12.99; age 3 and up. Oozing with personality, these plush characters make you smile and brighten your mood! Push their tummies and they talk and sing in goofy chipmunk-like voices. Each has a different pitch so that they can sing in harmony.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Zoobies, $40; age 5 and up. Snuggle up to this beloved bug from Eric Carles classic tale while reading! Exquisitely soft, the caterpillar plush toy opens up to a comfy pillow and unzips to reveal what he really ate: a warm, fuzzy blanket!
For toddlers and up: Dont Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus And More Stories by Mo Willems, Scholastic Media/New Video, 2010; 49 min.; $14.95; age 2-5.
For toddlers and up: Look Out World Here I Come! New York, Look Out World LLC, 2010; 30 min.; $19.95; age 2-5.
For toddlers and up: Meet the Sight Words DVD Boxed Set, Preschool Prep Company, 2009; 108 min.; $39.97; age-5.
For toddlers and up: Wimzies HouseA World of Enchantment, Mill Creek Entertainment, 2010; 4 hours, 10 min.; $9.98; age 2-5.
Tag Reading System, LeapFrog Enterprises, 2008; $39.99; age 4-8.
Beautiful Oops!, by Barney Saltzberg; Workman Publishing, 2010; $11.95.
Owl Kids; $29.99 for one-year subscription; $45 for two-year subscription.
Heads, by Matthew van Fleet; Simon &Schuster Children’s Publishing, 2010; $16.99.
The Peter Yarrow Songbook: Song for Little Folks, by Peter Yarrow, illustrated by Terry Widener; Sterling Children’s Books, 2010; $16.95.
Swim! Swim!, by Lerch; Scholastic, 2010; $16.99.
A Cow Says Moock, Alastair Moock, Moockshake Music, 2010; $15; age 2-10.
Eat a Bowl of Cherries, Rhythm Child, The Rhythm Child Network, 2009; $15; age birth-6.
Funky Fresh and Sugar Free, Sugar Free Allstars, Wiser Music, 2010; $12.97; age 3-10.
Jungle Gym, Justin Roberts, Carpet Square Records, 2010; $16; age 3-9.
The Kids Are All Id, Randy Kaplan, Randy Kaplan Music, 2010; $12.99-$17.99; age 4 and up.
Swimming in Noodles, Jim Cosgrove, Hiccup Productions, Inc., 2010; $13; age 3-8.
Ranky Tanky, Rani Arbo, Mayhem Music, 2010; $15; age 3 and up.
Take It Outside, The Okee Dokee Brothers, Okee Dokee Music, 2010; $15; age 3-9.
For more on the season’s must-haves, return to our 2010 Toy Guide or check out the following “best-of” lists:
- Best DVDs
- Best music
- Best video games and software
- Best books and magazines
- Best toys for infants and toddlers
- Best toys for preschoolers
- Best toys for ages 5+
- Best toys for ages 8+