Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

I’m determined to get a head start on holiday shopping this year.   And, I don’t know about you, but when looking for new toys I usually rely on friends’ recommendations along with top toy lists. Well lucky for me, The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA), just released their latest awards list – The 2017 Best Toys for Kids.  Eighteen winners in 17 distinct categories were chosen by hundreds of men and women from specialty toy store retailers. These judges have first-hand knowledge of what kids play with and totally get the value of play since they see it every day.  With this list, holiday gift shopping has become easier!

Who is ASTRA?

  • The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) is recognized nationwide for its prestigious annual awards program.
  • ASTRA is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting local toy shopping and creative, open-ended playtime for children.

How did they come up with these winners?

  • Engagement. They base their choices on how a child engages with a toy and can recognize a quality play experience when they see it.
  • They look for new and improved toys that promote open-ended or creative play.
  • Innovative. The toys must incorporate innovative design features.
  • Safety. Maintain exceptional safety standards.

And without further ado here are the 2017 winners.

2017 BEST TOY AWARDS

CATEGORY: ACTIVE PLAY

Laser X 2-Pack
NSI

CATEGORY: BOTS

Playvision
Smart Bot Robot

CATEGORY: CHOOSE YOUR OWN CATEGORY

Zipes Speed Pipes Performance Pack
Neat-Oh! International

CATEGORY: CLASSIC 0-7 YEARS

Topanifarm
Djeco

CATEGORY: CLASSIC PLAY 8+ YEARS

Doink it Darts
Marky Sparky

CATEGORY: CONSTRUCTIVE PLAY

Geomatrix
California Creations

CATEGORY: CONSTRUCTIVE PLAY

Remote-Control Machines: Construction Vehicles
Thames & Kosmos

CATEGORY: CREATIVE ARTS PLAY 7+ YEARS

Linkt Crafts Kits Bubble Loops
Neat-Oh! International

CATEGORY: CREATIVE PLAY UNDER 7 YEARS

The Ultimate Brick Maker
Relevant Play

 

 

 

CATEGORY: DOLL PLAY

Rahel from Ethiopia
Hearts for Hearts Girls

CATEGORY: EARLY PLAY

SmartMax My First Safari Animals
Smart Toys and Games, Inc.

CATEGORY: FAMILY GAME NIGHT

SLAPZI
Carma Games

CATEGORY:GAME  PLAY 2-5 YEARS

Cha-Cha Chihuahua
Gamewright

CATEGORY: GAME PLAY 5-8 YEARS

Go Go Gelato!
Blue Orange Games

 

CATEGORY: GAME PLAY 8+ YEARS

Kingdomino
Blue Orange Games

CATEGORY: LOGIC SKILLS

Roller Coaster Challenge
ThinkFun

CATEGORY: PRETEND – ROLE/FANTASY PLAY

My Magical Sound & Lights Unicorn
Gund

  CATEGORY: SCIENTIFIC PLAY

Snap Circuits STEM
Elenco

Which one of these are your favorites?