Toy of the Year 2011 Award Winners

Toy of the Year 2011 Award Winners

Every year Toy Industry Association is selecting Toys of the Year – TOTY in several nomination categories. The 2011 categories are: Activity Toy of the Year, Boy Toy of the Year, Girl Toy of the Year, Infant/Toddler Toy of the Year, Educational Toy of the Year, Game of the Year, Most Innovative Toy of the Year, Outdoor Toy of the Year, Preschool Toy of the Year, Specialty Toy of the Year, and Property of the Year.

Several nominees of each category were selected by the major and specialty retailers, members of the TIA Committee, toy journalists and bloggers, and consumers.You can see the nominee list of each category at the TOTY website. Finally the winners are identified in each category and the overall TOTY 2011 was identified. And the Winners are…

The Best Toy of the Year 2011

The Sing-a-ma-jigs!

For the detailed information check our review of the Sing-a-ma-jigs.

Activity Toy of the Year

Crayola Color Wonder Sound Studio

Winner of the 2011 Activity Toy of the Year Award, the Color Wonder Sound Studio is an interactive creativity-enhancing toy recommended for ages five through fifteen. This innovative addition to the Color Wonder line allows youngsters to experience the magic of sound as they color. With themed music that corresponds to the coloring sheets provided, this engaging toy stimulates the imagination through sensory input. It’s no wonder Crayola scored the win for best activity toy with the Color Wonder Sound Studio; parents are raving about it:

  • 2 yr old loves it!
  • A Great toy
  • It would be a great gift to give or receive!
  • Crayola-my walls and I thank you!

Boy Toy of the Year

Nerf N-Strike Stampede ECS Blaster

The Nerf N-Strike Stampede ECS Blaster won the Boy Toy of the Year for 2011 because it’s about as close to a real gun as it gets for an eight-year old, and even older kids will enjoy this massive toy/weapon. Parents will appreciate the characteristically soft Nerf “bullets” while kids will delight in the 18-dart clip and 30-foot range of this colossal toy gun. Weighing a whole five pounds and complete with a Blast Shield, Pop-Out Bipod, 3 extended clips, 1 Quick-Reload Clip, and 60 darts, youngsters will entertain themselves for hours shooting bad guys, or well—each other! Here’s what consumers are saying about this gun which has been called the most exciting addition to the Nerf lineup in its 40-year history:

  • Best Nerf Blaster Ever, Hands Down
  • Awesome. The Ultimate Nerf Gun
  • Best One Yet
  • If you’re thinking about buying a NERF gun, this is the one to get.

For more information please check our review of NERF N-Strike Series

Girl Toy of the Year

Squinkies Cupcake Surprize! BakeShop

Winner of the Best Girl Toy Award for 2011, the Squinkies Cupcake Surprize! Bakeshop combines collectible appeal, pretend play, and interactivity to create hours of playtime potential for girls ages four and up. A cupcake with a gumball design, the toy dispenses tiny playthings instead of candy and holds up to 15 bubbles containing the coveted “Squinkies.” The cupcake dispenser opens up to reveal a bakeshop where the Squinkies (and your children) can play and pretend to their hearts’ content. This interactive toy has been met with enthusiasm from customers:

  • My daughter loves it!!!!!
  • This is a really cute toy for the price and built really well.
  • Great fun and quality toy
  • What an amazing, fun, well-put-together product

Infant/Toddler Toy of the Year

My Own Leaptop

LeapFrog took home yet another award with its My Own LeapTop—this time for the Best Infant and Toddler Toy of 2011. Your little one will feel all grown up with this digital toy designed to look like a kid-version of a laptop, yet a whole lot more durable and packed with learning games and songs. The toy can also be personalized by connecting it to the Internet and entering your child’s name. Here’s what parents are saying about the latest in LeapFrog’s infant and toddler line:

  • Really, really fun, all my kids love it!
  • Great learning toy!
  • HIGHLY recommended!
  • Best buy!!!

Educational Toy of the Year

Leapster Explorer Learning Game System

It should come as no surprise to LeapFrog loyalists or even those vaguely familiar with the brand that LeapFrog earned the award for the 2011 Educational Toy of the Year. Renowned for its line of toys that are ever-increasing in their ability to educate, inspire, and motivate children, LeapFrog has done it again, this time with its new Leapster Explorer Learning Game System. Not only does the touch-screen enabled gaming system allow kids to learn about math, reading, science, writing, spelling, and more through engaging and challenging games, but LeapFrog has also devised a way for parents to track their child’s progress, enabling them to see their strengths as well as identify areas in which they may need extra help. Parents and kids alike seem to be very impressed with LeapFrog’s new learning device:

  • Best LeapFrog Handheld to Date
  • LeapFrog makes learning FUN with the new Explorer!
  • LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT!!!!
  • A wonderful addition to my son’s toys!

Best Game of the Year

Scrabble Flash

This new spin on a classic game, Scrabble Flash, won the 2011 Best Game of the Year Toy Award, no doubt for its ability to improve the traditional version of the game without completely changing it. Its use of “Wonder-Link” technology allows players to line up the digital letter cubes and earn points when correct words are spelled. The addition of a time-limit transforms the original game of Scrabble, which can drag a bit, to a fast-paced action game which still manages to hold some educational value as well. Players are impressed:

  • Fun and Addictive!
  • Great for Scrabble fanatics and newbies
  • Fast, furious, fun
  • Great Update on the Classic Game

Innovative Toy of the Year

The Sing-a-ma-jigs!

The 2011 toy sensation, the Sing-a-ma-Jigs, earned not one but two 2011 Toy of the Year Awards. The first one was for Innovative Toy of the Year, sort of a surprise considering its relatively simple idea—a toy that sings a harmonious tune, one note at a time which it belts out only at the prompting of your youngster’s squeeze. The strange appeal of these oddly cute little guys may lie in their collectible nature and/or their ability to synchronize with one another and sing in unison. For whatever reason, people love them:

  • Too cute
  • Awesome toy!!
  • Really cute, great as a group
  • Waaaaaaay fun.

Outdoor Toy of the Year

Nerf Super Soaker Shot Blast

Nerf scores two wins with its Nerf Super Soaker Shot Blast, winner of the 2011 Outdoor Toy of the Year Award. With a large-volume capacity tank and the ability to blast water up to 25 ft, this is the mother of all water guns. The soaker is designed for ages 5 and up, but even adults won’t be able to resist the wet and wild action guaranteed with Nerf’s impressive attempt at a water gun. Here’s what customers are saying:

  • A blast!!
  • Fun in the sun
  • It is the best one we have owned so far and is well made.
  • New age waterguns sure are fancy.

Preschool Toy of the Year

The Sing-a-ma-Jigs!

As mentioned, the Sing-a-ma-Jigs brought away two 2011 Toy of the Year Awards, the second one being the award for Preschool Toy of the Year. Although the toy has been acclaimed for its ability to appeal to all age groups, even adults, preschoolers tend to be especially drawn to their bright colors, interactive nature, and high-pitched voices. Here’s what parents of preschoolers are saying about the Sing-a-ma-Jigs:

  • OH yes—this is a must have!
  • Cutest thing I’ve seen
  • Love this thing!
  • Cute Little Guy

Specialty Toy of the Year

HEXBUG Nano Habitat Set

Winner of the Specialty Toy of the Year Award for 2011, the HEXBUG Habitat Set, is the perfect toy for the animal-lover, science-enthusiast, or robotics fan. The habitat features tiny robotic bugs that move and behave like real bugs, just more entertaining. They even contain unique codes that can be entered online to unlock a whole new world of virtual play. Here are the rave reviews about this unique toy:

  • FUN! As in F-U-N!
  • Entertaining to watch!
  • Awesome toy
  • Surprisingly Fun and Mesmerizing to Watch!

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