It’s a Small World

To completely misquote Kermit the Frog, it’s not easy being little. And that explains why miniature versions of just about everything in our world are so popular with those miniature people who live in our home. Here are some really fun small objects that your kids will love—and so will too.

Micro Boats (Zuru)

micro boatsAs you might guess from the name, Micro Boats are, indeed, small boats. But they’ll provide life-size fun for you and your kids. They’re water activated, self-steering, and move at a scale-speed of 200 MPH, which results in some truly epic crashes. Adjusting the rudders lets you perform donuts and other stunts. Micro Boats come in individual packs or as part of larger sets. The Water Slide, for example, comes with a suction cup so you can stick the slide on the wall next to your bathtub and drop your boat from five feet above the water. It also connects with the Shark Attack Challenge, a figure-8 water course that features a boat-swallowing shark and a crane. Ages 3+. www.zurumicroboats.com

Tonka Tinys Blast & Dash Quarry Playset (Funrise)

tonka tinysIf your little one loves little vehicles, you can’t do better than Tonka. This playset combines beautiful—yet very realistic—mini trucks with a working “detonator” that topples a precarious tower. It come with one Tonka Tinys vehicle, but there are lots of other options, including backhoes, emergency vehicles, dump trucks, recycling trucks, garbage trucks, firetrucks, and more (all sold separately). Blast & Dash connects to the Car Crush Escape playset (also sold separately) for even more fun and destruction. It’s for ages 5+, and retails for around $22. www.tonka.com

Shopkins Kinstructions (Moose)

shopkins kinstructionsIf you’ve never heard of Shopkins, don’t worry: your little one will be glad to fill you in on these trendy collectibles. We had a chance to play with two Shopkins Kinstructions Mini Packs: Weekend Wardrobe (62 pieces) and Party Fun (47 pieces). Both can be combined with blocks from most major brands to make even bigger tiny worlds (yes, in some cases bigger is better, even when it’s tiny), and each comes with two Shopkins figures that you and your kids can build together. They’re for ages 3+ and retail for under $15. www.shopkinsworld.com

Arcade Classics (Basic Fun)

arcade classicsDo you ever miss going to arcades and playing those great Atari games like Pac-Man and Donkey Kong? You may have even been tempted to buy one of those games to set up in your living room. That probably didn’t happen, right? Well, now’s your chance to rekindle all those great arcade memories—and share them with your children—without taking up an inch of floor space. Arcade Classics brings you some of your favorite games, complete with a joystick and all those funky electronic beeps and boinks you loved. And the gameplay is just like you remember, but smaller. With Centipede, you still destroy the centipede as it moves through the mushrooms, being careful to avoid the deadly flea, the ferocious spider, and the poisonous scorpion. And with Q-bert, you still hop on the cubes, keeping an eye out for Slick, riding the flying disc back to the top, and trying to catch the magic green ball to freeze the bad guys. Other titles include Pac-Man and Space Invaders. Arcade Classics are for ages 8+ and retail for about $15. www.thebridgedirect.com

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