LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) – Before you head out to grab some toys for the girls and boys, check out the special "Does it Work?" Toy Test series. In this round, the toys tested include the Air Hogs e-Charger, Moxie Girls Magic Hair Salon, Totally Me Digital Camera & Scrapbook Set, Battle Strikers Turbo Tops, Totally Me Tracing Table, Zero Gravity Laser Car, and the Hyper Dash.
Lauren Keith from KFVS-TV in Cape Girardeau has the first toy test.
The entire fourth grade at Century 100 Elementary in Ullin, Illinois tests seven popular toys...hand-picked by them!
"On your mark, get set, go!"
Look out girls! Already the Air Hogs e-Charger is wreaking havoc! In 10-seconds or less, it charges and then takes off. In this case, it almost hits the teacher! We can tell right away, the kids like this, but adults may not.
Meantime, with the Moxie Girls Magic Hair Salon you can actually hi-light the doll's hair with color and glitter. It's a little hard to get the goo into the special styling tool though. Also, the pink color shows up better on blonde hair than dark, so remember that when buying the separate Moxie doll.
The girls also really like designing outfits and hairstyles on paper with the Totally Me Fashion Tracing Table. Everything you need comes inside the little fold-up table. When you're done tracing, why not snap a photo of it?
"Got it!" one child says.
The Totally Me scrapbook and digital camera set comes with a teeny-tiny digital camera. Despite its size and hard-to-see-viewfinder, the girls really like making their own scrapbooks and photos, just like mom would. We also see a few girls getting into the new spin on the toy car.
This year, the car that rides on the wall now follows the laser you point. My testers found it works even better when the lights are off and the car can pick up the laser better. Remember, a clean wall and floor work best for this vacuum-powered roadster.
The boys drop the next toy into the playing ring. With Battle Strikers Turbo Tops Dragon Blaze, you can see how long your charger can get the top to spin. It's a basic magnetic top set. If you buy and additional set, supposedly you can battle an opponent at the same time. Still, there's another toy where kids try and beat the clock.
"Oh, nineteen seconds!"
The game, Hyper Dash, is sort of like a timed Hide and Seek. One child places discs around the room or outdoors, then the next child has a certain amount of time to retrieve them. Kids compete for best time. The best part: that's just one of the games the makers of Hyper Dash came up with in this set.
"Run! Run! Get it" the kids scream.
Something isn't running though....
"I'd say this is dead, guys," I tell the kids as I pick up the toy.
We haven't even been here an hour yet and already, the e-Charger is beat up and the batteries are dead. No wonder, you should hear how much battery juice it uses to rev up. So, will this toy "fly" when I return a week later?
"What about grade 'F?" I ask the kids as they tally their votes and results upon my return to the classroom.
Overwhelmingly, the kids FAIL the $11 e-Charger toy, and the teachers agree.
"Somebody's gonna get hurt," said Amy Allen, fourth grade teacher.
It would probably work best outside and with another set of batteries.
Meantime, refills for the Moxie Girls Magic Hair Salon might add up, too, with that cost of batteries.
"It's fun, but what do you do when you run out?" asked student Kaylee Rose.
Still, the fourth grade girls constantly played with this set. Also, they report the pink color does wash out, as promised, so you can dye the hair all over again. Better buy an extra tube of color when purchasing this toy because the girls will play with it a lot. The $30 Moxie Girls Magic Hair Salon styles up a good grade B. Remember, the $10 doll is not included.
"I didn't think people would like to go out and buy that," said 4th grader Cason Hight, referring to the Battle Strikers Turbo Tops starter pack.
It's mixed reviews for Turbo Tops. First, lightning strikes pictured on the box make you think there's gonna be some big action here. Again, it's really a top set. To truly get the most fun out of this toy, you'll want to buy another charger...that's an extra 15 bucks. The black matt which keeps the top within boundaries, costs and extra $10. My testers knocked it down for the price but give it high marks for fun. I averaged the boys' grades and this $40 magnetic Battle Strikers Turbo Tops set holds onto a B-.
I'm sensing a theme here...the scrapbook and digital camera set will also cost you more once the book is filled with stickers and photos. You'll need to restock your supplies. Plus, you might have extra costs developing the pictures from the tiny camera. NOTE: the pictures are sometimes fuzzy. So, hold that camera steady the best you can. The girls give the $30 Totally Me Digital Camera and Scrapbook set a B+.
"We like the tracing table because it holds everything inside. They can use it in the car. Watching the kids, they went to it during their free time the most. It's one of those things they loved," said Mrs. Allen.
I think you'll love the price....$15 including a ton of tracing paper and colored pencils. The girls "totally' gave the Totally Me Tracing Table an excellent A+.
Meantime, you might think the Air Hogs Laser car would race on by as the boys favorite, but.
"Once they played with it for five or ten minutes, we had to charge it. Charging took time but overall that was the one they argued over to play with. They really did enjoy it," noted Mrs. Allen.
So, pack your patience in the trunk. Still, the $35 Zero Gravity Laser Car zooms by with an A-.
"It challenges you to do stuff!" said Kaylee now referring to Hyper Dash.
Want more bang for you buck this Christmas? Then get Hyper Dash. Both boys and girls loved chasing after the discs and beating their times. Plus, the teachers like how the game gets the kids moving.
"You have to be quick to do it though!" notes Cason.