At Talking Tots, we understand how children learn and how to nurture this through play. The Talking Tots Toy Awards have been designed to help parents and carers find great toys that spark children’s imaginations and encourage them to make new discoveries.
All the toys included in the Talking Tots Toy Awards have been reviewed by our panel of child development experts.
The Talking Tots Toy Awards panel were looking for toys that excel in developing skills in the following categories:
- Communication: toys that promote language skills, nurturing social confidence.
- Motor Skills: toys that develop fine and gross motor skills, helping young children become more confident and co-ordinated.
- Creativity: toys that encourage children to explore colour, texture, shape and form.
- Social Skills: toys that allow children to mimic the world around them and develop imagination.
- Pre-literacy: toys that introduce children to words, sounds, rhymes and rhythm in an age-appropriate way, helping to build the skills that will be required for subsequent reading and writing.
Talking Tots Toy Awards 2011 – The Winners!
We are thrilled to announce the Winners of our 2011 Toy Awards.
The Talking Tots Awards judges selected a Winner and a Highly Commended toy from an impressive shortlist in each category. Below are our winners:
Toys that help children develop Communication
WINNER - Wooden Diner Kitchen
Children will love this retro-style play kitchen. It has a two-ring hob with dials, oven, sink, microwave, chalkboard, cupboard, chopping board, hanging rail, work surface and lots of shelf space for storing all your play kitchen kit (fun play food, pots, crockery and utensils are all available separately). This toy is great for your child’s language development: Playing cooking with the Wooden Diner Kitchen allows ‘real world’ pretend play for your child. Mimicking real life situations and conversations helps children to develop more complex expressive language skills and vocabulary.
Available from Early Learning Centre http://www.elc.co.uk
HIGHLY COMMENDED - Circa – the circular calendar
This is a beautifully crafted fully interactive calendar helping to teach children the days of the week, months of the year and days of the month. There are fun nursery rhymes on the reverse side of the disc to help children to remember the days of the week and months of the year. Time concept and sequencing is an essential part of language development.
Available from Circahttp://www.circacalendar.com
Toys that help children develop Creativity
WINNER - Giant Foam Floor Pattern Blocks
These jumbo-sized foam shapes make for endless patterning and play opportunities. They are also great for colour recognition and sorting. Your child’s creative imagination will run wild. Set includes 4 hexagons, 6 squares, 12 triangles, 6 trapeziums, 9 parallelograms and 12 rhombuses, all made of soft foam.
Available from Learning Resources http://www.learningresources.co.uk
HIGHLY COMMENDED - Magnetic Chalkboard/Dry-Erase Board
This combined chalk/dry-erase board comes equipped with everything needed to keep your child drawing, doodling, and spelling for hours. One side is a dry-erase board, the other is a magnetic chalkboard.
It has a carry handle and so is great for creating on the go! It comes with three sticks of coloured chalk, a dry-erase marker and 36 magnetic numbers and letters.
Available from Brightminds -http://www.brightminds.co.uk
Toys that help children develop Motor Skills
WINNER - Gears! Gears! Gears! Super Building Set
This set includes a giant storage tub and Activity Guide.
Young children will love using problem-solving and engineering skills to create moving master-pieces of spinning, colourful action! Little fingers will find it easy to manipulate and build the sturdy pieces. Hours of endless fun either playing alone or with a friend.
Available from Learning Resources
HIGHLY COMMENDED - Curious Caterpillar Activity Pull-Along
A gorgeous little pull-along that's full of surprises! A velour apple on wooden wheels with a cute caterpillar sitting snugly inside crinkly leaves The apple can be pulled out and played with separately and little fingers can poke and squeeze to discover melodic chimes, squeaks and crinkles . The multi-textured fabrics provide tactile stimulation and when your little one is on the move the soft grab pull-along handle allows them to take Curious Caterpillar on his travels.
Available from Little Bird Told Me http://www.littlebirdtoldme.co.uk
Toys that help children develop Pre-literacy Skills
WINNER - Clickety Books
Clickety Books have been created from a linguistic point of view and feature fun characters such as Lucky the Plucky Duck, Erica the Picky Chicken and Cork the Squawky Hawk.
They are clear to read and beautifully illustrated and are complemented by audio CDs which are narrated with Rik Mayall's & Ronni Ancona unique voices.
The books make use of rhyme, repetition of words, phrases, sentences and refrains which allow children to make predictions or guesses about words, phrases, sentences that could come next in the story.
Available from Clickety Books
HIGHLY COMMENDED - Scout Fridge Words Magnetic Set
Pre-school children can learn to build over 325 words through three different levels of play including Load a Letter, Word Play and Word Building. Using the included 29 letters your child can learn to spell out early key consonant – vowel – consonant words such as ‘cat’ & ‘hat’. All pieces attach securely to any magnetic surface. English voice.
Available from Leap Frog Store
Toys that help children develop Social Skills
WINNER - Melissa & Doug Doctor Role Play Costume Set
This is a brilliant Doctor role-play costume set. Put on the white jacket and mask so you’re all prepared for a busy day at the hospital. It even comes with sound effects & accessories for realistic, exciting fun.
Role play costumes are excellent for helping to develop speech, language & social skills and also aiding children to make sense of the world around them.
Available from Tesco www.tesco.com
HIGHLY COMMENDED - Dino Bite
A fun interactive game where children have to rescue a Dino Baby. The realistic jungle noises and the rampaging T-Rex give the game the edge producing much hilarity and noise. The game is also good for encouraging turn-taking skills and social skills.
Available from Drumond Park
For your chance to win £250 of toys in time for Christmas just enter our free prize draw! Simply enter your details.
Prize draw rules
1. No purchase necessary.
2. Entries must be received by 12pm on 16th December 2011. The winner will be notified on or before 20th December 2011 by the email address they provide.
3. Entry is strictly limited to one entry per household. Entry to the Prize Draw can only be made by completing the form online at www.talkingtots.info
4. Prize draw winner's name and general location will be published on the main Talking Tots website and blog site..
5. The prize will consist of an assortment of toys suitable for pre school children to the value of £250
6. There is no cash alternative to the stated prize. We reserve the right to offer a similar prize, or a prize of equal or greater value, if the stated prize is unavailable.
7. Pre Christmas deliver is not guaranteed.
8. The promoter of the Prize Draw is Talking Tots Ltd, 108 Warton Street, Lytham, FY8 5HA.