Dr. Toy® Announces 2015 Best Picks Children’s Products
– This Year’s Picks of Smart Toys for Back-to-School, After-School, and Holiday Gifts –

San Francisco, CA – (October 26, 2015) – The 2015 Dr. Toy’s Best Picks of Children’s Products awards report is now available to parents, teachers, and others in the online magazine, Dr. Toy’s Guide.Best_Picks_Winner

The Dr. Toy® Award Program was developed by noted play and child development authority, Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, (a.k.a. Dr. Toy), as a service to consumers who desire to purchase safe, affordable, educational, and stimulating new toys and play products for children. This award recognizes educational play products that complement the “100 Best Children’s Products Awards” and that provide additional resources for consideration and use at home and in school.

“As a childhood specialist,” says Dr. Toy, “I have seen the continuous, essential need for more year-round diverse resources that enable consumers to identify and choose the most appropriate, safe, and engaging learning and developmental products for all children that bridge home and school.”

Dr. Toy reports that since the innovative online magazine Dr. Toy’s Guide has been available, “many thousands of visitors daily from around the world have easy access to our timely valued information.” The site was the first online resource to evaluate toys and children’s products.

The report, “Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Picks Children’s Products for 2015,” is being released “to encourage parents and teachers to focus on the value of play as essential to the learning process.”

Dr. Auerbach adds, “Smart play products selected from many excellent companies across the USA, Canada, and other countries provide children with exciting new developmentally appropriate tools to help them do better in school, and also provide more constructive activities after school.”

Dr. Toy believes “parents, grandparents, and teachers need help to gain a head start locating new, diversified products that children will enjoy while increasing skills, enhancing instruction, and expanding imagination.” The products we select are balanced among large and small companies, and range from low to high tech for “hours of active, creative, educational, and stimulating fun.”

“Children learn best through play,” says Dr. Auerbach, “and these new smart toys and products encourage children to maximize their potential. This is a good time to ‘take stock’ and do an inventory of what your child is using for play, what is not used, and what is needed next for continued development.”

“Dr. Toy’s Guide offers excellent ideas for choosing new products for use in learning, after school play, and during the holidays ahead.”

“Dr. Toy’s Best Picks” were carefully chosen as worthy of attention from among thousands that the Dr. Toy Team has reviewed at toy fairs, in catalogs, and many other sources, using the extensive criteria Dr. Toy has developed over many years.

Among the criteria used are: safety, age-appropriateness, design, durability, lasting play value, cultural and ethnic diversity, good transition from home to school, educational value, learning skills, creativity, improvement in the understanding of the community and the world, good value for price, and, naturally, fun. 

For complete information about these smart toys and products read the full report at www.drtoy.com.

Dr. Toy selects products that include toys, active products, audio/visuals-video tapes/CDs/DVDs, creative products, educational products, games, socially responsible products, tech, and culturally relevant products like green toys, and more.

Winning products are manufactured by established and new, large and small companies from around the world, including: Adora Dolls, Crayola, Discover with Dr. Cool, Discovery Toys, Fashion Angels, Folkmanis, Galison/Mudpuppy, Horizon, Just Play, LeapFrog, Learning Journey, Magformers, MGA, Mindware, Patch Products, Tactic Games, Talkplaces, Toy State International, VTech, Wonder Workshop, Zipit, and others.

Dr. Toy’s report includes company name, customer service numbers, web site addresses, age range, price, and a full description of each product. The award-winning, on-line magazine, Dr. Toy’s Guide, features full color photos of each product, links to companies to learn more, interviews with and articles by Dr. Toy, plus hundreds of other Best Products for all reasons and seasons. At this time over 6000 products are included in Dr. Toy’s Guide with direct links to companies and toy stores on line, plus toy history, parent resources, and much more. See also the new Mobile App, “Dr. Toy’s Best Gift Guide for handy guidance as a practical take-along shopping tool. 

About Dr. Toy: Dr. Auerbach, a long-time resident of San Francisco, originally from New York City, lived in Washington, D.C., while working for the Department of Education where she approved the first proposal for “Sesame Street” and established the first day care center for children of federal employees. In San Francisco, she established the San Francisco International Toy Museum, the world’s first “hands-on” toy museum visited by over 50,000 children. The author of 15 books, including The Toy Chest, Toys for a Lifetime, The Whole Child, Choosing Child Care, and hundreds of articles on toys and play, she is the only Ph.D. in Child Development evaluating toys and children’s products with extensive training, background, and over 40 years of experience evaluating, writing and speaking about toys and children’s products. Dr. Auerbach is trained in child development, education, child psychology and special education. She is an educator, consultant, parent, and playful grandparent. Her book, Dr. Toy’s Smart Play/Smart Toys: How to Raise a Child with a High PQ (Play Quotient), which is published in 12 countries, may be obtained through www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com and at other book stores.

The Dr. Toy Award Programs recognize the best toys and play things in many categories including, Best of the Year, Best Picks, Best Classics, Best Vacation, and Best Green. The website has links to the product makers and retailers and other useful sites for parents, teachers, children, and toy enthusiasts. Dr. Toy’s Guide  provides all pertinent information and includes photos, complete product descriptions, links to company sites, and consumer information.

Interact with Dr. Toy on social media through Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.


Additional Points:

  • Dr. Auerbach is the author of the newly released 4th Edition of Dr. Toy’s Smart Play/Smart Toys: How to Select and Use the Best Toys and Games (Regent Press), which provides useful tools to parents to enhance their child’s P.Q (Play Quotient). The book, published in China, Croatia, Egypt, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Korea, Russia, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, and the USA, and will soon be available in other countries.
  • Articles about and by Dr. Toy have appeared in newspapers and magazines across the U.S., Canada, and around the world.
  • Read other articles on play and toys by Dr. Toy on The Huffington Post.
  • Dr. Toy’s Guide lists many useful websites and other resources on play, toys, and parenting.
  • Check also Dr. Toy’s Best Gift Guide Mobil App for your convenience.
  • Dr. Toy presents the newest products to parents and teachers around the world.
  • Dr. Toy writes, speaks, and shares insights about the importance of learning through play.
  • All toys are donated. Product and guidance information is available online.

Interviews with Dr. Toy, info about her books and/or the smart toys and products can be arranged with
Walsh Public Relations at 203-292-6280 or drtoy@walshpr.com 


Selected by Stevanne Auerbach, PhD (Dr. Toy®)

Alphabetical list by company name

  Company Product Type Age Price Phone Website
1. 77SPARX Studio Wonster Words ES IN LA PZ 2-7 $0.00 650-969-3948 www.77sparx.com
2. Adora Dolls Mixxie Mopsie AC CO CP DO 4-12 $39.99 800-779-5335 www.adoradolls.com
3. Banana Peel Press Pink Tulip+Toothless Keepsake Kit ES BO NO OT 3-9 $48.95 984-212-1794 www.bananapeelpress.com
4. Brightz Wheel Brightz OP CP TS AP 8-12 $14.99 419-517-0049 www.brightz-ltd.com
5. Brybelly Sub Shop ES MA BG LA 6-12 $14.99 800-926-7241 www.brybelly.com
6. Crayola Crayola Color Wonder Light-Up Stamper AC AP CP HM 3-12 $24.99 212-373-6042 www.crayola.com
7. Crayola Crayola Crayon Carver AC AP CP HM 6-12 $29.99 212-373-6042 www.crayola.com
8. Crayola Crayola Thread Wrapper AC AP CP HM 8-12 $24.99 212-373-6042 www.crayola.com
9. Discover w/Dr. Cool Moon Light PZ GE SC 6-12 $24.95 855-437-2665 www.discoverwithdrcool.com
10. Discovery Toys Mosaic Mysteries Heirloom Edition ES TY WT PZ 8-12 $50.00 800-341-8697 www.discoverytoys.net
11. Discovery Toys My Friends Puzzle ES TY WT PZ 19 mos-5 $22.00 800-341-8697 www.discoverytoys.net
12. Dream Frenz Dream Frenz PL TY 3-12 $24.00 941-993-5636 www.dreamfrenz.com
13. Eastcolight Professional Human Torso Set ES SC 8-12 $40.35 425-349-3718 www.eastcolight.com
14. Edupress Pete the Cat On-the-Go Games GE CG 3-12 $12.99 800-835-7978 www.edupress.com
15. Fashion Angels Pixel Loom AC AS CP HO 8-12 $16.99 800-492-3237 www.fashionangels.com
16. Folkmanis Folkmanis® Collared Lizard Puppet PL PU TY 3-12 $33.99 800-654-8922 www.folkmanis.com
17. Folkmanis Folkmanis® Pelican Puppet PL PU TY 3-12 $33.99 800-654-8922 www.folkmanis.com
18. Folkmanis Folkmanis® Winged Dragon Puppet FP PL PU TY 3-12 $29.99 800-654-8922 www.folkmanis.com
19. Four Boys Industries Switchcrafted DO SR BO ES 3-12 $29.99 720-979-9794 www.switchwitches.com
20. Fundamentals Toys DIY Bubble Bath AC BA CP GN 6-12 $14.99 877-617-1563 www.kissnaturals.com
21. Fundamentals Toys DIY Perfume Kit AC CP HM SC 6-12 $14.99 877-617-1563 www.kissnaturals.com
22. Galison/Mudpuppy Mythical Beasts Magnetic Build-It AC CP FP TR 6-12 $16.99 212-354-8840 www.galison.com
23. Gunamuna Gunapod Wearable Blanket OT AS TR 0-3 $32.00 978-258-9273 www.gunamuna.com
24. Haywire Group Worry Eaters TY PL SR ES 3-12 $22.99 413-543-3020 www.haywiregroup.com
25. Hide and Seek Hide and Seek Interactive Plush GE EL TY PL 10 mos-6 $29.95 678-358-4204 www.hideandseektoy.com
26. Horizon Group Candy Cordtz On the Go Tattoo Jewelry AC AP CP OT 6-9 $9.97 800-651-0616 www.craftprojectideas.com
27. Horizon Group Just My Style Alpha Beads AC AP CP TR 6-9 $9.97 800-651-0616 www.craftprojectideas.com
28. Horizon Group Paint Your Own Glitter Plaster Horses AC AS CP FP 6-12 $12.97 800-651-0616 www.craftprojectideas.com
29. Ikiki Ikiki Shoes with Adjustable Squeaker AE CS NO OP 8 mos-5 $29.95 801-356-3823 www.ikiki.co
30. InRoad Toys Thomas & Friends Track PlayTape CO FP ML TS 3-12 $9.99 888-311-7165 www.inroadtoys.com
31. Just Play Doc McStuffins Take Care of Me Lambie CE MM PL TY 3-12 $49.99 800-317-3245 www.justplayproducts.com
32. LeapFrog Imagicard Paw Patrol EG ES MA TC 3-9 $24.99 800-701-5327 www.leapfrog.com
33. LeapFrog Number Lovin’ Oven FP MA  ML TY 2-6 $24.99 800-701-5327 www.leapfrog.com
34. LeapFrog Platinum EL ES IN TC 3-9 $129.99 800-701-5327 www.leapfrog.com
35. LeapFrog Word Whammer AP ES GE LA 4-8 $19.99 800-701-5327 www.leapfrog.com
36. Learning Circle Kids Reader Bee-First Story Marker CP ES GE MM 3-6 $0.99 650-350-6011 www.readerbee.com
37. Learning Journey Learn with Me Sort and Learn Apple ES LA GE SR 2-6 $24.99 877-839-3969 www.thelearningjourney.com
38. Learning Journey Play and Learn Shopping Cart AE OP AP TY 3-8 $24.99 877-839-3969 www.thelearningjourney.com
39. Mme Alexander Doll Jazzberry Pink Pixie Doodle CP AC TY DO 3-12 $27.95 800-229-5192 www.madamealexanderdoll.com
40. Mme Alexander Doll Little Sister Babblebaby TY DO 3-12 $44.95 800-229-5192 www.madamealexanderdoll.com
41. Magformers Inspire 100Pc Set TY CO 3-12 $99.99 877-817-4574 www.magformers.com
42. Magformers Unique 44Pc Set TY CO 3-12 $99.99 877-817-4574 www.magformers.com
43. Magformers Walking Dinosaur 81Pc Set TY CO 3-12 $189.99 877-817-4574 www.magformers.com
44. MGA Bratz C.I.Y. Fashion Set AC AS CP DO 5-12 $44.99 800-222-4685 www.mgae.com
45. MGA 3-in-1 Adventure Course™ AE 6 mos-3 $79.99 800-222-4685 www.mgae.com
46. MGA Project Mc2 McKeyla’s Lava Light CP DO ES SC 6-10 $24.99 800-222-4685 www.mgae.com
47. MGA Stand ‘N Dance Starfish MM AP EQ 9 mos-3 $24.99 800-222-4685 www.mgae.com
48. MindWare Animal Trivia Challenge BG ES MM CE 7-12 $24.95 651-268-2814 www.mindware.com
49. MindWare Make Your Own Doggy Day Camp AE AP CP OP 8-12 $29.95 651-268-2814 www.mindware.com
50. MindWare Unbored Treasure Hunt AP CE CP MM 8-12 $29.95 651-268-2814 www.mindware.com
51. My Happy Pillow My Happy Pillow ES FP LA PL 2-10 $19.99 203-722-3844 www.myhappypillow.com
52. Napa Valley Toys NightBuddies CT PL SR TY 3-9 $19.99 800 455-1081 www.nightbuddies.com
53. Paper Punk Jewelry Fold – Square AC CO CP GN 6-12 $19.95 415-380-1940 www.paperpunk.com
54. Patch Products OK to Wake! Alarm Clock & Night-Light AS EL TC MM 3-5 $32.99 800-524-4263 www.patchproducts.com
55. Smart Toys & Games Build & Connect AE CO CR ES 3-12 $59.99 800-542-6375 www.smartgamesusa.com
56. SmartLab Toys Drop Zone Cargo Release Glider AE OP SC TS 8-12 $39.99 866-319-5900 www.smartlabtoys.com
57. Star Kids Products Snack & Play 2.0 AP AC EQ TR 18 mos-12 $29.99 303-887-9017 www.snackandplaytraveltray.com
58. Tactic Games Beanie Boos Friends Game ES GE BG 3-12 $11.99 216-288-0087 www.tactic.net
59. Talkplaces Plyt BG ES GE MA 4-12 $30.00 447956352926 www.plyt.co.uk
60. Tonni-Co Tag the Art Game AC CP ES GE 7-12 $40.00 201-938-0686 www.tagtheartgame.com
61. Toy State Cat Buildin’ Crew Roll ‘N Go Machines AE OP TY TS 2-5 $14.99 781-349-1000 www.toystate.com
62. Toy State Road Rippers Dancing Car TS TY 3-7 $19.99 781-349-1000 www.toystate.com
63. VTech Baby Amaze Learn to Talk & Read Baby Doll BO DO ES LA 2-5 $29.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
64. VTech Flipsies Sandy’s House & Ocean Cruiser TY MM EG ES 4-9 $39.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
65. VTech Go! Go! Smart Animals Grow & Learn Farm EL ES MM GE 12 mos-5 $39.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
66. VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Ultimate RC Speedway TY MM EG ES 1-5 $59.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
67. VTech Lil’ Critters Roll & Discover Ball LA ML TY AE 6 mos-2 $14.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
68. VTech Lil’ Critters Soothing Starlight Hippo CE MM ML PL 0-2 $24.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
69. VTech Sit-to-Stand Alphabet Train ES EL TC TR 12 mos-3 $49.99 847-400-3600 www.vtechkids.com
70. Wonder Workshop Dot ES EL SC TC 5-12 $49.99 844-966-3311 www.makewonder.com
71. Zipit ZIPIT Monstar 3 Ring Pouch CP IN NO TC 6-12 $9.99 800-511-6239 www.zipitstore.com/monstar

Product Type Code:
AC = arts and crafts

AE = active
AP = activity product
AS = accessories/decoration
BA = bath toy
BG = board game
BO = book
CE = children’s entertainment
CG = card game
CO = construction
CP = creative product
CR = computer-related
CS = costume
CT = cultural
DH = doll house
DO = doll
EC = eco-friendly
EG = electronic game
EL = electronic product
EQ = equipment
ES = educational skills
FP = fantasy play
GE = game
GG = geography
GN = green
HM = handmade
HO = hobby
IN = internet
LA = language
MA = math
ML = musical
MM = multimedia
NO = novelty
OP = outdoor play
OT = other
PL = plush
PU = puppet
PZ = puzzle
SC = science
SR = socially responsible
SW = software
TC = technology
TR = travel
TS = transportation
TY = toy
UN = unique
VG = video game
WT = wood toy

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