Tom Vacar has been `field testing' toys for 10 years. The consumer editor for KNX Newsradio in Los Angeles distributes sets of donated toys to 24 day-care centers in nine states. Teachers rate the toys' durability, learning value, ease of assembly, maintenance, safety, and - of course - fun. We ran Mr. Vacar's `Toy Test Hall of Fame' earlier this year (see story, March 13, p. 14), but felt it was worth sharing again. These are the toys that, year to year, rank the highest with children and teachers.

Barbie Dolls & Accessories (Mattel, age 3 and up)

Brio Toys (Brio, 3 and up)

Legos or Duplos (Lego, 3 and up)

Play-Doh (Kenner, 4 and up)

Etch-A-Sketch (Ohio Art, 4 and up)

Tonka Trucks (Tonka Toys, 3 and up)

Wagons (Radio Flyer, 5 and up)

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