Sizzling List Will Help Keep Kids Active and Minds Sharp

WAYNE, N.J., May 31 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Toys "R" Us today announced a list of summer toys, games and books that are sure to keep kids and parents happy this summer. This "Best of Summer" list provides parents with new and classic items that will help kids stay active and occupy young minds during the fun-filled days of summer. All items featured on this list are available either at Toys "R" Us stores nationwide or online at

Toys "R" Us stores have a wide range of products on the "Best of Summer" list that will provide endless hours of activity for kids of all ages. Keeping in mind the busy and diverse lives of today's kids, the list includes a number of books, games and toys for kids, whether they are traveling to a vacation destination, frolicking in the backyard, curling up on the couch, lounging poolside, or staying up past bedtime.

"Each summer parents look for new and exciting ways to keep their kids busy, safe and happy, while incorporating some educational content into their activities," said Jim Feldt, President, U.S. Merchandising, Toys "R" Us. "The Toys "R" Us "Best of Summer" list does just that by providing parents with a great reading list and several fun and educational toys and games to fill the endless summer days."

The Toys "R" Us "Best of Summer" items, listed alphabetically by category, are as follows: (asterisked items are not available on

Educational Toys
*Baby Einstein Baby Wordsworth(TM) First Words Around the House DVD from
Buena Vista Home Entertainment
InteracTV(TM) DVD from Fisher-Price
Leapster(TM) Multimedia Learning System from LeapFrog
V.Smile(TM) Pocket from VTech
Word Whammer(TM) from LeapFrog

Travel Toys
*Crayola(R) Color Wonder(TM) Fingerpaints and Paper from Binney & Smith
*Clip-On Doodle Pro(TM) from Fisher-Price
*MP3 Player from Craig Electronics
Nintendo(TM) DS from Nintendo
*Assorted Travel Games from Hasbro

Outdoor Toys
Dora(TM) The Explorer Jeep(R) Wrangler(R) 4x4 from Fisher-Price
*ESPN X Games Bike from Toys "R" Us
Fly Wheels(TM) from Road Champs
Fold 'N Store Picnic Table from Little Tikes
Super Soaker(R) Star Wars(R) Wookiee Blaster(TM) from Hasbro
Waterwheel Play Table(TM) from Step2

Summer Reading
Chapter Books
*Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
*The Grim Grotto (A Series of Unfortunate Events) by Lemony Snicket
*The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
*Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook by Shel Silverstein
*Summer of the Sea Serpent (Magic Tree House #31) by Mary Pope Osborne
*A Treasure's Trove: A Fairy Tale About Real Treasure for Parents and
Children of All Ages by Michael Stadther

Young Readers
*Green Eggs and Ham (Beginner Books) by Dr. Seuss
*If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff
*Storybook Treasury of Dick and Jane and Friends (Dick and Jane) by
Outlined below are the detailed product descriptions for items on the Toys "R" Us Summer 2005 List.

Educational Toys


Buena Vista Home Entertainment

Baby Wordsworth First Words Around The House DVD is a playful introduction to words and sign language -- room by room. Hosted by classic Baby Einstein puppets, the title includes a special guest appearance by Academy Award- Winning actress, Marlee Matlin, who introduces little ones to the concept of language, including verbal, written and sign. Tapping into a baby's natural curiosity about the everyday objects they see in their home, Baby Wordsworth takes parents and children on an adventure through the kitchen, yard, living room, playroom and bedroom. No batteries required. Ages 1 year and up. Note that this product is not available until July 19.

INTERACTV(TM) DVD from Fisher-Price

This electronic learning system is comprised of an InteracTV DVD that you insert into your home DVD player, a controller, and activity cards based on popular children's television shows. Plug an activity card into the controller, and games and activities featuring that show will appear on the TV screen. Nine touch points let kids interact with the characters in lessons covering numbers, colors, animals, and more. 3 AA batteries required. Ages 3 years and up.


Designed for children in preschool through second grade, the handheld Leapster multimedia learning system offers educational games, reading exercises, art tools, and interactive videos in one electronic device. Children can learn letters, sounds, colors, shapes, numbers, and more using the touch-screen stylus and multi-directional control pad. This unit comes with a bonus cartridge of six learning games; other Leapster cartridges are sold separately. 4 AA batteries required. Ages 4 to 8 years.


The V.Smile Pocket turns game time into brain time by combining a video game platform and educational content in a portable learning system that goes anywhere or connects directly to the television for gaming at home. The battery-operated pocket console allows early school-age learners to play a variety of exciting and imaginative games anywhere they go, guided by popular characters. Many brain-building V.Smile "smartridges" are available, including Care Bears, Spider-Man & Friends, Scooby Doo and Disney. 5 AA batteries required. Ages 4 to 8 years.

WORD WHAMMER(TM) from LeapFrog

What's a Word Whammer? It's a machine that teaches kids letter names, letter sounds, and how letter sounds blend together to make words. With LeapFrog's Word Whammer(TM) Fridge Phonics(TM), you can create over 325 three- letter words with magnetic letters that sing and teach. These interactive, magnetic letters are based on the LeapFrog Talking Words(TM) Factory video. The letters and magnetic letter reader attach securely to the refrigerator. Volume control and 3AA batteries included. Ages 3 years and up.

Travel Toys

CRAYOLA(R) COLOR WONDER(TM) from Binney & Smith Color Wonder(TM) Fingerpaints offer more ways for kids to express their creativity anytime and anywhere. These fingerpaints color only on special Color Wonder Paper, and they're spill-proof too so kids' hands, clothes, and work areas stay clean. Kids just rub the paint with their finger, paint it on the paper, and watch the various colors gradually appear. No batteries required. Ages 3 years and up.

CLIP-ON DOODLE PRO(TM) from Fisher-Price

Clip-On Doodle Pro(TM) is small and portable, and with its easy-to-use clip, children can hang their artwork just about anywhere. The toy features a magnetic drawing surface with attached drawing pen and a magic eraser bar that slides to erase the screen. The Clip-On Doodle Pro is available in four fun colors (each sold separately). No batteries required. Ages 3 years and up.

MP3 (CMP 1339) from Craig Electronics

This new, compact MP3 player allows children of all ages the opportunity to download their favorite music and take it anywhere. With a 256 MB capacity, users can store over 60 songs. The player also has a voice recorder, FM radio, blue backlight, earphones, USB 2.0 version, DRM and direct encoding. 1 AAA battery required. Ages 8 and up.

NINTENDO(TM) DS from Nintendo

This portable game console has two screens, touch-screen input, voice recognition and a wireless communication set. The two screens offer two perspectives on the action at once. The touch screen makes accessing items, moving characters or navigating menus as easy as a tap or drag on the screen. Voice recognition lets players simply tell the game what they want it to do. Chat software will let users transmit text messages, handwriting and even drawings to one another. And wireless functions link players in the same room -- or across the country. Rechargeable battery included. Ages 3 years and up.

TRAVEL GAMES from Hasbro

Easy to carry and easy to pack, travel games from Hasbro will provide hours of fun for those on the run, with titles including: Connect Four(R), the vertical checkers game; Hungry, Hungry Hippo(R), the marble munching game; and Battleship(R), the naval strategy game. No batteries needed for each game. Ages 4 years and up.

Outdoor Toys

DORA(TM) THE EXPLORER JEEP(R) WRANGLER(R) 4X4 from Fisher-Price Adventurous children will hit the road with Dora(TM) the Explorer in her Jeep(R) Wrangler(R) 4X4. This vehicle, available exclusively at Toys "R" Us, drives on hard surfaces and grass and features the Power Lock Brake System. Includes a special Dora map and backpack for take-along fun. Map opens to guide adventures and special treasures can be stored in the backpack. Vehicle drives at a maximum of 3.5 mph forward and reverse. Requires super 6-volt battery (battery and charger included). Ages 3 years and up.

ESPN X GAMES BIKE from Toys "R" Us

The 20" ESPN X Games Bike, available exclusively at Toys "R" Us, features oversized frame tubing, unique mag wheels, center pull brakes, BMX tires and a 360-degree rotor. In addition, the bike has authentic ESPN graphics, embossed "X" logo saddle and deluxe padded BMX racing seat. The bike comes with a lifetime warranty on frame and one year on parts. No batteries required. Ages 6 years and up.

FLY WHEELS(TM) from Road Champs

Fly Wheels(TM) are replica wheels and tires that look and perform just like the wheels on real vehicles -- just on a smaller scale. With a pull of the ripcord, Fly Wheels can race at over 300 scale miles per hour and jump over 25 feet in the air. Fly Wheels come in a variety of size diameters and types just like real wheels do, including racing, off-road, and tuner wheels. No batteries required. Ages 3 years and up.


The ultimate kid's table, this unique 4-sided table is ideal for snacks, games, crafts, picnics and more. Seats up to 8 kids. Assemble it once, then fold, move or store it anywhere. Compact design and built-in hooks make it easy to hang on the wall. Batteries not required. Ages 24 months to 8 years.


The Super Soaker(R) Star Wars(R) Wookiee Blaster(TM) is a high-performance toy that is styled just like the Wookiee blasters from Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith movie. The Star Wars(R) Wookiee Blaster(TM) also has trigger-activated authentic sound effects from the movie. 3 AA batteries required (included). Ages 7 years and up.


Children can pour water into wide funnel activating water wheel, which spills into the inner and outer harbors. The falling water action encourages creative exploration and cause & effect learning. The table's elevated design keeps water at easy reach for toddlers. The table accommodates up to three children and holds up to four gallons of water. The WaterWheel Play Table(TM) features a built-in drain plug for easy water removal. Includes four-piece accessory set: one cup, two sailboats and water wheel tower. No batteries required. Ages 1 year and up.

Summer Reading/Chapter Books

THE GRIM GROTTO (A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS) by Lemony Snicket The 11th in a series, the book finds the siblings headed down Stricken Stream on a broken toboggan when they are spotted by the submarine Queequeg and it passengers. The adventures that follow are harrowing. All ages.


The highly anticipated sixth book in the Harry Potter series will further chronicle the exploits of Harry and his friends at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As with the other five books in the series, the closely guarded plot secrets of the new book will surely keep Harry Potter fans on the edge of their seats, and wanting to read more. Ages 9 years and up. Note that this book is not available until July 16.


This classic tale celebrates its 50th anniversary. The action-packed story follows the spellbinding adventures and travels of Peter, Edmund, Lucy and Susan and their quest to rid the country of the evil witch and her followers. Ages 9 to 12 years.

RUNNY BABBIT: A BILLY SOOK by Shel Silverstein

Completed prior to the poet's death in 1999, the book is populated by the likes of Runny Babbit, Toe Jurtle, Ploppy Sig, Polly Dorkupine, and Pilly Belican, all denizens of the green woods where letter-flipping runs rampant. Ages 9 to 12 years.


Jack and Annie are off on another mythical mission at the request of Merlin the magician. Luckily, they have a young sorcerer, Teddy, to help them. From underwater caves to a Spider Queen and a magical sword, this is an adventure kids won't want to miss. Ages 9 to 12 years.


CHILDREN OF ALL AGES by Michael Stadther

An illustrated fairy tale about twelve forest creatures whose mates have disappeared after being crystallized by a dark dust that falls every evening. Concealed in the pages of this story are the clues to twelve very real and very valuable treasures that are hidden around the continental United States. All ages.

Summer Reading/Young Readers

GREEN EGGS AND HAM (BEGINNER BOOKS) by Dr. Seuss Young fans of the unflappable Sam-I-am will be pleased to discover the plethora of flaps to lift in this 10-page board book version of the Dr. Seuss classic. Sam-I-am does his very best to convince a more finicky Seuss character to try this rather unusual delicacy. Ages 4 to 8 years.

IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE by Laura Joffe Numeroff

This tale of warped logic between boy and mouse is a surefire winner in the giggle-generator category. But concerned parents can rest assured, there's even a little education thrown in for good measure: underneath the folly rest valuable lessons about cause and effect. Ages 4 to 8 years.


These wonderful hardcover compilations of favorite stories include a mix of beloved classics as well as recent hits sure to appeal to girls and boys alike. The storybook treasure includes: We Look and See, We Come and Go, and The New We Work and Play. Ages 4 to 8 years.

About Toys "R" Us

Toys "R" Us, Inc. is one of the leading specialty toy retailers in the world. It currently sells merchandise through more than 1,500 stores, including 680 toy stores in the U.S. and 608 international toy stores, including licensed and franchise stores as well as through its Internet sites at, and Babies "R" Us, a division of Toys "R" Us, Inc., is the largest baby product specialty store chain in the world and a leader in the juvenile industry, and sells merchandise through 219 stores in the U.S. as well as on the Internet at

Kelly Cullen

Kathleen Waugh
Both of Toys "R" Us