Sam's Toybox: Holiday toys for screen-free learning

CHICAGO (WLS) -- If you're scrambling to figure out what to get your kids for the holidays you are in luck. Consumer Reporter Samantha Chatman is opening the toy box she has the hottest toys of 2020.

Toy expert Laurie Schact has spent several months trying out thousands of toys to come up with a list.

Speak & Learn Puppy (Leapfrog)



-Kids can watch this little friend come to life with flapping ears, a head that moves, and real-time responses.
-As toddlers learn to talk, this interactive dog repeats what they say and asks questions to keep the conversation going.
-Bailey says what kids say in a fun and interactive way in Babble mode. In Talk mode, the puppy has conversations with children and creates stories from their responses.
-Explore animal facts, animal sounds, food, feelings, letters, and numbers through four paw buttons and a light-up collar. Multiple songs encourage learning, and three learning levels allow the toy to grow with kids as their language skills develop.
-Ages: 1+
-MSRP: $29.99
-Available: Amazon, Walmart, Target

Botley 2.0 The Coding Robot Activity Set (Learning Resources)



-Botley 2.0 provides endless hours of screen-free STEM fun, helping kids learn hands-on coding and critical thinking skills without the need for a phone or tablet.
-Code through obstacle courses with sequences of up to 150 coding steps, explore multiple ways to code through colors and movements, and more.
-Interactive "Botley Says" gameplay adds a new way for kids to test their memory skills.
-Packed with hidden features that keep kids asking "what can I discover next?" Find the codes to turn Botley 2.0 into a train, police car, ghost, and more!
-The all-new light sensor makes Botley 2.0's eyes light up when he's in the dark.
-Use up to four Botleys into the same room for multiplayer races and competitions with friends.

-Comes ready to code right out of the box! Have 5 AAA batteries (3 AAA batteries for Botley and 2 AAA for the remote programmer) and a Phillips screwdriver nearby to get coding in minutes.
-Ages: 5+
-MSRP: $84.99
-Available: Amazon

Circuit Explorer (Educational insights)



-There is a new way to circuit play with three different out-ofthis-world playsets (Rocket, Rover, and Deluxe Base Station) that take circuits off the board and into imaginations!
-Using a brand-new 3D circuit technology, Circuit Explorer is a line of kid-friendly, real-working 3D circuit pieces that allows kids to engage in safe circuit building and imaginative play.
-Match the conduits with simple markings and instantly spark kids' curiosity as lights, sounds, and motion all become possible by making the right connection with Circuit Explorer.
-These connectable circuit pieces are simple to understand and durable enough for little hands to play independently with no adult supervision.
-The STEM learning system provides positive, hands-on experience with key engineering and design principles.
-Includes astronaut and robot figures.
-Requires 9 AAA batteries, not included.
-Ages: 6+
-MSRP: $29.99 - $59.99
-Available: October - Amazon (exclusive)

Magformers Backyard Adventure 61pc (Magformers)



-Kids can use Magformers building techniques to transform and create a playhouse, playground, and more!
-Decorate the backyard with trees, working lights, seesaws, swings, and more.
-Each geometric shape contains magnets that never reject, so the Magformers will always click.When playtime is over, use the magnetic power to simply stack and store.
-Ages: 3+.
-MSRP: $69.99
-Available: Target

Kinetic Sand Sandwhirlz (Spin Master)



-Use the Sandwhirlz tool to reveal a surprise shape and flow of Kinetic Sand!
-Inspired by the drop and squish play pattern, kids can reload the cylinders again and again for endless play.
- Comes with 2 pounds of colorful Kinetic Sand and a carry case.
-Ages: 3+
- MSRP: $19.99
-Available: Target, Amazon, Walmart

For more information, visit www.thetoyinsider.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter Instagram and Youtube.
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