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Articles by Diane Franklin


Tub Activities Expand Past Arts & Crafts (5/1/2006)
There’s a whole lot of fun taking place in the bathtub these days, thanks to the emergence of toys that promote creative, interactive and educational play.

Lighting a Fire Under a Toy (2/1/2006)
There’s nothing quite as discouraging as a toy that sits on a shelf week after week. What do you do with such slow-movers?

Educational Electronic Media: Inappropriate for Babies? (2/1/2006)
A new report by the Kaiser Family Foundation raises questions about the educational claims of DVDs and videos for young children.

Magical Therapy (12/1/2005)
Magic has the power to entertain, the power to amaze and — when used as part of a therapeutic program at hospitals and rehabilitation centers — the power to heal. The tricks are illusions, but the benefits are real.

Baby Goes High-tech (11/1/2005)
Many top-selling baby toys now feature electronic components that add light, sound, movement and interactive play.

A Retro Toy Experience (10/1/2005)
A couple of toy industry pros have taken their values to the street.

Taking Responsibility for Toys (10/1/2005)
Where do toy producers draw the line between their obligation to stockholders and their responsibility to children?

Kids For Kids´ Sake, and Money for All (9/1/2005)
What happens when violence sells more than peace, and edgy sells more than family? Where are the lines, and where do the toy companies stand in the difficult tight-rope walk between accounting and accountability?

Model Train Manufacturers Are “All Aboard” DCC (8/1/2005)
The biggest trend in model trains can be summed up in three letters: DCC. With Digital Command Control, model railroaders control multiple trains at multiple speeds in multiple directions on a single track without the need for complex wiring or toggle switches.

Building Connections Through Cyberspace (7/1/2005)
Now, manufacturers of building and construction toys are offering a new kind of demonstration – online interactive sites – that allow kids to get hooked on building before they even step in the door.

Jumping Off the Toy Shelf and Into the Movies (6/1/2005)
Stars on the toy shelf are becoming stars on the DVD and video shelves.

Action Figures Drive Sales Without a License (5/1/2005)
Without a licensed tie-in to popular media, an action figure faces a challenge that is far more formidable than battling the forces of evil — the battle for the consumer’s dollar.

Laughing Pizza Serves Up Fun (5/1/2005)
Laughing Pizza doesn’t come with pepperoni or sausage. Instead, the name refers to a family musical group that serves up a flavorful blend of pop, country and Motown-style tunes.

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