China Toy Fair


COMMENTARY: Wooden Toys Prove to Be Timeless

At this year’s American International Toy Fair, I found that the industry’s trend of creating retro and nostalgic toys is hitting the infant/preschool sector in a big way. Multiple companies were debuting new toy lines that were a throwback to the classics: wooden toys.

Ali.March7Chicco’s new wooden line was particularly impressive. Known for their focus on developmental toys, Chicco created a wooden toy line that revamps the old classics that are familiar to parents. From Stacking Cubes and Sailor Friends, to all sorts of instruments and pull toys, Chicco was debuting a line that gave a modern, sleeker look to toys that are generational favorites. The Animal Cottage Wood Sorter, a classic wooden toy with a modern and colorful look that teaches important skills, was irresistibly adorable.

Along with Chicco, wooden toys were popping up in preschool lines from Beanpatch & Co. and Manhattan Toy. With no more proof needed than the success of Melissa & Doug’s wooden toys, classics tend to evoke memories in parents—ones they can then share with their children while creating new ones. In a world of technology-driven toys, there’s something to be said for the simple, classic nature of a wooden toy line, and the quality ones will stand up against time. These wooden toys not only have a crafted look that increases value, they also teach developmental skills to babies and infants in a simplistic way.

For more commentary from Ali, check back each Thursday afternoon. Views expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Toy Book as a whole. We hope that you will share your comments and feedback below. Until next time!

GUEST BLOG: Five Toys to Teach Kids About Money by Mallory Loren

The following is a guest blog written by Mallory Loren who is a digital strategist and contributor for BCF Wealth Strategies. The company acts as a personal CFO that specializes in small business owners, self-employers, and retirees.

Your little one is a long way off from balancing checkbooks and managing mortgages, but teaching him or her about responsible spending starting at a young age is an extremely important skill. Children often find lessons about money to be tedious, so we have some toys to make it exciting. Check out these five educational aids and toys to help your wee one become enthusiastic about learning the value of a dollar:

Fisher-Price Fun 2 Imagine Cash Register (2-4 years)

The Cash Register is a classic and handy tool to introduce your child to the concept of money. The Fisher-Price Fun 2 Imagine Cash Register is brightly colored, comes with sortable numbered coins, makes noises, and features popping and spinning rolling action that will keep your little one entertained while learning.

Perfect Solutions Digital Coin-Counting Piggy Bank (8+ years)

This toy takes the classic piggy bank to the next level. The Digital Coin-Counting Piggy Bank is useful for all ages. Even adults may find it helpful to keep track of loose change, but it is designed for kids because it allows to see them how much money they have accumulated and keeps count of their earnings all in one place.

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Melissa & Doug Toys Recalled In Canada

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Three toys by Melissa & Doug, the Slice and Bake Cookie set, Shape Sorting Cube, and Pound a Peg, have been recalled in Canada only. Health Canada, the country’s public health department, says the surface paint on the toys contains excessive barium that is past the legal limit in Canada. For more information, click here.