Toys are cool. Really, really, really cool. And it doesn’t matter if your 4 or 40 – playing around never loses appeal. But, as you know probably all too well, not all toys are created equal. Those that are trendy aren’t always the items you want to be buying for your tykes. This year however, we’ve been really fortunate. Designers’ collaborations resulted in some of the greatest toys to date. So, here’s a list of favorite toys that came out in 2012. Each one offers learning opportunities creatively disguised by being immensely fun. (If I’ve neglected your favorite 2012 toy, let me know!)
1. Classic Derby Car
Vroom, vroom! Rev those engines, little racers, here’s derby car that really couldn’t be any cooler. An FAO Schwarz original, this sweet hot rod is crafted of solid steel with a working steering column and allows any kid from 3-7 an opportunity to ride retro style.
2. Gourmet Kitchen Set
Step aside, Ina Garten! With this realistic wooden kitchen set, any young chef can whip up greatness. With slots to hang pots and pans, working knobs, and an oven window to check dinner’s progress, this gourmet kitchen is the perfect place for little chefs to create culinary art! (And it’s also created 100% from sustainable materials.)
3. PlaSmart PlasmaBike
Nice wheels, kid. Instead of tacky training wheels, this bike is equipped with just two massive wheels that teach balance without the fear of falling over. Plus it doesn’t have any batteries, gears, or pedals, making it a super safe, sleek way to get around.
4. Makedo Find and Make Plane
Up, up, and away from the trash! It’s easy to repurpose cereal boxes, paper cups, and plastic bottles with this kit that allows them to create unbeatable planes. The kit comes with instructions, pins, clips, and hinges that are reusable, so planes can be made again and again.
5. Lego Duplo Creative Sorter
Legos for little hands are great for learning, but this creative set pushes it a bit further with plastic cards that can help any child build by themselves. By matching color-coordinated shapes with the slots in the cards, a giraffe, parrot, and elephant easily are brought to life.
6. BBQ Blitz!
Get ready, Grill Master, it’s time to put your skills to the test! This super-silly, entertaining game sounds ridiculous, but it’s actually a lot of burger-sliding fun – even for parents. Basically, you take burgers off of the grill using your spatula and build the perfect slider as directed by your paper plate. It’s simple, sure, but aren’t the simplest things somehow the best?
About the Author:
"Katie Straw" is the Gourmet Scribe at GourmetGiftBaskets.com, one of the top suppliers of gift baskets in the nation, and currently resides in Manchester, New Hampshire.