Raleigh Mom Bloggers and Stone’s Team to Name 2014 Top Toys

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Six mom bloggers in Wake County teamed with Stone’s Education & Toys in Raleigh to share their favorite children’s toys, just in time for Christmas. Stone's 2014 "Best Toys for Kids" list was compiled with help from area moms, their children, and in cooperation with the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association.

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Snap Circuits found at Stone's Education & Toys.

These toys are in high demand by area parents and their children, because they help educate and stimulate young minds, said Carol Madison.

From Simon to Snap Circuits, Thinking Putty to Spirograph, the votes are in from a group of Triangle-area moms on the smartest toys of the year. Stone’s Education & Toys, a favorite independent retailer of educational toys, games, books and teacher supplies, compiled its 2014 “Best Toys for Kids,” with the help of area moms, their children, and the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA). These favorite toys offer a double whammy of entertainment and educational value, perfect for keeping young minds actively learning. Each has been awarded with the ASTRA seal of approval.

“Area mothers have shared with us the importance of toys and games where play intersects with learning,” said Carol Madison, co-owner of Stone’s Education & Toys. “We recommend parents explore our list of popular toys, not because they’re the latest fad promoted by a television show or movie. These toys are in high demand by area parents and their children, because they help educate and stimulate young minds.”

Over 550 of America’s top independent toy retailers selected ASTRA’s list of “Best Toys for Kids," based on the most engaging, unique and fun toys that offer fulfilling play for children. With the help of six influential Wake County mom bloggers and their children, Stone’s staff created its own “Best Toys for Kids” based on popularity, an understanding of how kids play, and parent feedback.

The Stone’s Education & Toys 2014 “Best Toys for Kids” include:

1) The Original Spirograph Deluxe Kit by Kahootz Toys. This creative art toy set will keep kids quietly creating fantastic art for hours.

2) Squigz by Fat Brain Toy Co. These ultra-popular suction cups come in playful colors and fun sounds to keep busy minds building things all over. They don’t leave marks, and adhere well to nearly any hard surface, including each other.

3) Snap Circuits by Elenco Electronics. It’s a snap for kids of all ages to learn the science of energy through physics and electronics. Everything necessary to build over 165 projects.

4) Ezy Roller is a riding toy that combines the best features of a bike and a scooter, where kids propel their way to fun through unique body motions.

5) Simon, the classic 80’s memory game, is back and popular with kids. It has an updated design and LCD counter to keep track of high scores. Some things never go out of style.

6) Thinking Putty by Crazy Aaron’s Puttyworld. Stretch it, stick it, bounce it, and write on it. Choose the classic or the newest offering for hours of fun possibilities.

7) Magformers, Tegu and Magna-Tiles are colorful magnetic building toys that provide hours of creative building fun on flat surfaces or in 3-D. This is where math, science and creativity meet!

8) ZOOB is an innovative building system where a child can invent a toy and play with their creation. Pieces snap, click and pop together to form joints that rotate, limbs that extend, axles that spin and lots more.

9) Poppers, by Hog Wild. What may seem like mindless fun is a wonderful way to build fine motor skills, encourage hand and finger strengthening, and improve hand/eye coordination.

10) Books, and Arts ‘n Crafts Kits. Not to be left out, good ol’ fashioned books as well as various crafts kits are still very popular with moms and kids.

This year’s list of the smartest toys was compiled with the help of six Triangle-area mom bloggers and their children. They include: Sarah Coggins of 2Paws Designs. Ilina Ewen of Dirt and Noise. Molly Gold of Go Mom! Erin Lane of A Parenting Production. Jessica Lieb of The B Keeps Us Honest. Cyndi Soter-O’Neill of My Convertible Life.

Stone’s staff cross-referenced their selections with top toys from ASTRA’s “Best Toys for Kids,” tallied from independent retailers’ picks based on popularity, uniqueness, and fulfilling play. The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association is a non-profit association committed to providing children with healthy, quality play materials that foster learning and childhood development.

About Stone’s Education & Toys
For children, nothing compares to the enchanted feeling of shopping at a local toy store. Stone’s Education & Toys is a passionate advocate for the shop local movement as an independent retailer of educational toys, games, books and teacher supplies. Children and their parents, grandparents and teachers can experience the joy of learning while playing when they visit Stone’s 17,000 square foot store, which serves as a unique learning lab. Stop by to discover the building’s real-time energy consumption and use of renewable energy. These sustainability features make it one of the Triangle’s greenest buildings, recognized with a 2014 City of Raleigh Environmental Award for Green Design, a 2014 Triangle Business Journal Real Estate Award for Best Commercial Build-Out, and a 2014 Cary Excellence Award.

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Scott Misner

Carol Madison
Stone's Education & Toys
919-821-7210
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Stone's Education Superstore
since: 06/2009
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