The MadeForMums Toy Awards are an annual event, where we recognise the best toys for children aged 0 to 14 – and release the list of our award-winners in October, just when we know parents like us are all on the hunt for great toys to buy for Christmas.
We award Gold, Silver and Bronze winners over 30 categories, covering everything from Best Baby Toy and Best Toddler Toy to Best Science Toy or Kit, Best Stocking Filler, Best Doll and Best Construction Toy. And we also award special Editor’s Choice awards for toys that really stand out from the crowd.
We’re known here at MadeForMums for our expert, honest and thorough product reviews, and we bring those same standards to our Toy Awards – knowing that the award of a winner’s badge from us will be recognised both by parents and major retailers as a sign of outstanding quality and play potential.
How are the toys judged?
The very best people to rate toys are – obviously – the children who play with them, so every year, we recruit a panel of child judges, ranging in age from 12 weeks to 16 years.
In 2018, we had over 1000 children on our panel! We set them (and their parents) the task of playing with our shortlisted toy entries and telling us exactly what they think of them. And boy, do they tell us EXACTLY what they think!
We also had special toy expert and family influencer judging days at MadeForMums HQ – and we’re planning the same (but even better!) this year.
In 2018, all the shortlisted toys were tried out by an awesomely influential panel, including:
- 3 teen YouTube stars with over 5 millions views. Amazing Arabella, JD the Kid and Channel 4’s 2017 Child Genius, Tray Sean Ben Salmi are 3 of the 5 co-hosts of the Youtube channel, Team Trouble (pictured above). They will be filming some of the shortlisted toys as they judge. Amazing Arabella and JD the Kid have a combined Instagram following of 259,000 followers.
- Andy Joyce, the lead presenter of Brainiac Live and producer, director and writer of children’s theatre,
- Danny Sebastian, presenter of children’s show Junkyard Rescue.
- Amy Williams MBE, former Skeleton racer and Olympic gold medallist for Team GB, and mum of 1
- Sonali Shah, the former BBC Newsround presenter, and mum of 2
- Laura Hamilton, star of Dancing on Ice and A Place in the Sun, and mum of 2
- Al Ferguson, CEO and founder of The Dad Network,
- Tess and Olivia from parent-led campaign group Let Toys Be Toys
- Peter Jenkinson, aka the Toyologist, recently seen on Philip Schofield’s TV show How to Spend it Well
- Ian Downes, toy industry expert and owner of Start Licensing
- Robert Hutchins, editor of Toy News