Playonwords LLC Announces Top 10 PAL (Play Advances Language) Award Picks 2018, Holiday Gift Guide: Top Toys, Games, Books and Media That Spark Fun and Encourage Language

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Respected speech-language expert Sherry Artemenko announces her Top 10 PAL product lists by category representing the only industry recognition promoting language development through great play. Parents and educators alike value Sherry’s nearly four decades of experience and benefit daily from her popular blog, playonwords.com, consulting practice, media appearances and articles.

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PAL Top Ten Seal Playonwords.com

play is how children develop emotionally, cognitively and in language

Regular interaction with children guides Playonwords founder, Sherry Artemenko, to a unique set of the best toys, games, books and media that have the chemistry to develop language while delivering great play. Today, Playonwords is announcing it's annual “Top 10 PAL Picks of 2018” by age and product category. Our Top 10's take the guesswork out of giving great holiday gifts. Parents and grandparents use our lists to shop for smart toys with lasting play value.

Winners are assessed and reviewed by Sherry with input from parents, kids and educators. Observing kid's play in action, combined with her critical eye for language potential, Sherry awards products and writes insightful reviews offering practical tips on how to maximize the educational value in each winner on playonwords.com.

Language catalyzing PAL winning toys and games are powerful additions to a child's learning tool box, since children learn through play, and language is integral to learning! Our 2018 Top 10's include a number of great winners that inspire imagination and story-telling with engaging props from Schleich’s “Croco Jungle Research Station” to Geomagworld’s “Magicube Story Building” Promoting children’s literacy skills is a strong theme throughout this years’ winners as children can form letters with large, bendable Art Rods, practice language skills with an interactive Bluebee Pal, or respond to the newest 3D LeapStart Pad, learning concepts, letters, vocabulary and reasoning. The toy industry continues to value new games to build EQ (emotional quotient including social language skills) with exciting tools like EQtainment’s “Q Moment AR” and MindWare’s “Silly Street Character Builders.”

Sherry’s expertise has been tapped by NBC Connecticut TV, FOX TV News 6 Milwaukee, Parents Magazine, The Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, parents.com, parenting.com, ASHAsphere (official blog of the American Speech Language Hearing Association), and ASHA LEADER magazine.

For Sherry, great play is not just about fun, or language development, it’s about going deep on both. Her expertise has been built on science and more than 17,000 hours of client experience. Each set of Top 10’s represents a breadth of themes and genres, but they all have one thing in common - they are trusted lists of fun products that boost learning through play.

Here are 2018's Top 10 PAL Picks - See her reviews at http://www.playonwords.com

TOP TOYS: INFANT

  • Bright Lights Soccer Ball by VTech
  • GearZooz GearBuddies Lion & Mouse by VTech
  • Learn and Spin Aquarium by VTech
  • Magicube Freebuilding Cubes by Geomagworld
  • Play & Move Puppy Tunes by VTech
  • Touch & Discover Sensory Turtle by VTech

TOP 10 TOYS: TODDLER

  • Go! Go! Smart Wheels Launch and Chase Police Tower by VTech
  • Go! Go! Smart Wheels (Police Car, Truck, Helicopter) by VTech
  • Magicube Mix and Match 9 piece by Geomagworld
  • Magnetic Board (Dinosaur) by Bigjigs Toys LLP
  • Make a Mat by Makeamat.com
  • Multi-Spout Sprayer by Hape
  • My Little House by Smartfelt Toys
  • Piccoli Horses Classic Plush
  • Sensory Railway by Hape
  • Tad’s Fridge Phonics by LeapFrog

TOP 10 TOYS: PRESCHOOL

  • BRIO World- SmartTech Engine with Action Tunnels and Washing Station
  • Fire Station by Hape
  • Frog Life Cycle by Folkmanis, Inc.
  • Long and Tall Puzzle 123 Rocketship by The Learning Journey International
  • PAW Patrol Ultimate Rescue Fire Truck by Spin Master
  • Pop Oh Ver Kitchen Counter Top by Kangaroo Manufacturing
  • Pop Oh Ver Stove Set by Kangaroo Manufacturing
  • Reindeer in Here
  • Sharingland Cardboard Playhouse Kits
  • Silly Street Character Builders by MindWare

TOP 10 GAMES: PRESCHOOL

  • 500+ Sight Words Flash Cards Bundle Kit by Think Tank Scholar
  • Acorn Soup by MindWare
  • Catch! by MindWare
  • Chugga Choo by MindWare
  • Code Hopper by MindWare
  • Five Little Fish by Ravensburger
  • Hoyle Super Me! by The United States Playing Card Co.
  • Magicube Story Building by Geomagworld
  • Quercetti Rami
  • Where’s Mr. Wolf? by Blue Orange Games

TOP 10 TOYS: SCHOOL AGE

  • Art Rods by Underdog Educational
  • Crayola Color Chemistry Lab Set
  • Croco Jungle Research Station by Schleich
  • GraviTrax Starter Set, Expansion Pack and Accessories by Ravensburger
  • Kruselings by Hape
  • Magicube Word Building by Geomagworld
  • Mobile Vet With Hanoverian Foal by Schleich
  • My Story Dolls by Faber-Castell
  • Playful Chef Chocolate Studio and Shoppe by MindWare
  • Ravensburger VW 3D Puzzle

TOP 10 GAMES: SCHOOL AGE

  • Anomia Kids by Anomia Press
  • ARTributes by Simplyfun LLC
  • Big Money by Wonder Forge
  • Blank Slate by USAopoly
  • CODENAMES : Disney Family Edition by USAopoly
  • Disney Villainous Game by Wonder Forge
  • Not Parent Approved
  • Otrio by Spin Master
  • Shadows in the Forest by ThinkFun, Inc.
  • WordAround 2 by ThinkFun

TOP 10 BOOKS AND MEDIA

  • Bluebee Pals-Lily the Lamb-Talking Educational Learning Tool & Life Skill Companion App by Kayle concepts LLC
  • Crayola Ultimate Light Board
  • Go-With-Me ABC Backpack by LeapFrog
  • LeapStart 3D Learning System by LeapFrog
  • LeapStart Peppa Pig by LeapFrog
  • Learning Friends 100 Words Book by LeapFrog
  • Moonlite by Spin Master
  • My First Learning Tablet by LeapFrog
  • Q Moment AR by EQtainment
  • The Big Fun Workbooks by Highlights Press

Each holiday season, millions are spent on kids’ toys, games and books. These PAL winners above are not only great fun but also encourage rich language development. Think “tastes like ice cream, fortifies like spinach,” optimizing your toy purchases to build language while maintaining all the fun. Now’s the time to be intentional about your child’s toy chest, game drawer, bookshelf and tablet!

ABOUT PLAYONWORDS, LLC
Playonwords.com was founded by well-respected speech-language pathologist, Sherry Artemenko. Her 35 years championing language rich play, esteemed PAL Award, popular blog, and insightful tips to parents set her apart as the leading advocate for the language component in toys.

Over 17,000 hours working directly with children has shown her that a unique set of the best toys, games and books have the capability to develop language while delivering great play. Studies show:

  • Kids with highest IQs at three, had the most words at one and two
  • Language learning is cumulative – early words => early sentences => language & reading
  • Most kids maintain their verbal advantage through childhood
  • Creative pretend play that sparks story-telling can advance future literacy

Sherry established the PAL Award to identify unique toys, games and books that through their design, quality and character, encourage play that advances language. PAL winners in the hands of kids, spark fun and creative play with lots of talk. Such toys, recognized on the basis of her child development expertise, are complemented by practical coaching in her blog, showing parents and caregivers how to get the most from toys, games and books to build language and underlying cognitive skills.

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Sherry Artemenko, Founder and President

Bob Artemenko, CMO
Playonwords
since: 03/2010
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