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The Toy Man® News & Views
Product Reviews / Evaluation Report Summaries (ERS)

Induction Certificate Number:   74020080221-190
Induction Date:   February 21, 2008
Product:   The Learning Tower
MSRP:   $179.95
Company URL:  http://www.littlepartners.com/
Rating: 

The Learning Tower

by:  Rev. James G.W. Fisher - Product Evaluation Specialist
     
Evaluation Report Summary (ERS) Date:  02/21/2008

The Learning Tower provides a safe platform for your child to work on projects at counter top levels. Sturdy and durable, it is constructed from wood and is protected with a gloss finish. Adjustable to three levels, it will grow with your child!




Product Type Release Year Primary Usage Target Age / Max. Weight Target Gender
Furniture & Accessories, Juvenile 2000 Consumer/Education 18 mo. to 6 years Female/Male


Evaluation Report Summary (ERS) - Index



Evaluation Report Summary (ERS)
Category Rating Scores

Category rating scores are based on scale from 1 to 5. Rating score must be 3 or higher to pass in each evaluation category.


Design Quality Durability FunFactor ™ Innovation Marketing Value Visual Appeal
5 5 5 5 5 4

Final product / service rating is averaged from the sum total of ALL applicable evaluation category scores. Only scores of "3" or higher are published.

There are a total of 357 evaluation categories which are used in our evaluation process.
(NOTE: Not all categories are applicable to any one product or online service.)

Only 6 of the evaluation category rating scores for this New Inductee's evaluation are featured for public view.


image of factory with ecological leaves symbol. Trade Industry Sales Types
Industry Memberships

Wholesale Retail Reseller Online 

 

 


Safety Guidelines Symbol ImageSafety / Quality Classifications
 
CE MarkedUL ApprovedJPMA Certified
ASTM Complianteco-Friendlyeco-Conscious



CPSIATÜVEU
Independent Lab Tested  Independent Lab Name 

  SGS
LeadSafe™ - Surface Coatings/PaintLeadSafe™ - Content / SubstratesPhthalatesSafe
  
BPASafeSoluble Heavy MetalsMechanical/Physical
Flammability - Solids/TextilesLabeling of Hazardous Art MaterialsiWatchDog™ Approved
(Complies with ICCS™ Certification Standards)



UPC Code / ISBN#Manufacturer SKUAge Grading
 



Manufactured InSafety Hazard/Warnings
U.S.A.None

 


About Our New Inductee
A quick yet informative glance at what this New Inductee is all about.

The Learning Tower™ is a most unique product because at first it appears as just a simple piece of furniture for children, but don't be fooled; there is far more to The Learning Tower™ than being just another furniture product for kids! The Learning Tower™ in actuality can be a foot step, a desk, or with a combination of The Playhouse Kit and a child's imagination, The Learning Tower™ can transform into a fort, a puppet theater, or so much more!
Image of Product

"Never did I imagine myself taking interest in the content of this children's DVD. I learned so much about each of these artists that I never before had appreciation for."


* A quote from one of the mom's at The Toy Man® Theater, a new segment of our consumer hands-on evaluation events.
The primary secret to this innovative creation is the fact that it was a mother who developed the idea of this product. She knew that kids grow up and furniture can be quite costly so she developed a product which can adjust with a child's age.

That wasn't enough though...she went even further so that The Learning Tower™ can easily be transformed for a variety of specific uses ranging from being a step stool to being the platform which brings a child up to a level where they are tall enough to stir, pour - to be a part of the process of whatever Mom is doing.
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Additional Details and Perspectives
More than just a cursory glance with aspects of relative importance.

The Learning Tower™ is not one of those usual pressed board furniture pieces with a wood veneer cover; it is constructed of sturdy, high-quality layered birch which is quite solid and quite durable. Its four-sided design and roomy platform provides the elements needed which will foster the development of a sense of security and safety by both family and caregivers. That in turn enables the child’s desire to be independent and inquisitive to not be so strong of a concern with The Learning Tower™.




An image of product 2  
"In.

from.
"

* A quote from one of the detailed evaluation reports our independent evaluators prepared as part of our evaluation process.


The Learning Tower™ is a Mom or Caregiver's best friend. The reason for this is that as we all know, kids are prone to spill things and get messy. The wood of The Learning Tower™ has a glossy sealed finish which is easy to simply wipe the mess and germs away with nothing more than a stroke or two of a wash cloth.
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"The Playhouse Kit" is an additional option to use with The Learning Tower™. For a child, The Playhouse Kit is not just a package of accessories to enhance the look of The Learning Tower, it is the key ingredient that they need to go on an adventure of their imagination, exercising and developing their creative thinking and cognitive skills. The Playhouse Kit is an accessory set which includes an easily-attachable roof, red curtains, and four theme signs to create a puppet theatre, doll house, drive-thru, and lemonade stand.

From helping in the kitchen to putting on a show, children’s imaginations can go into overdrive with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit. Parents and caregivers can now enjoy seeing children riding the waves of their imagination as they investigate and experience new adventures of excitement while learning simultaneously in a 100% ChildSafe environment. The Learning Tower Playhouse Kit has a suggested retail price of $32.95; combination sets are available with a suggested retail price of $189.95.



The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit is different than most products we evaluate and thus must have the hands-on evaluation handled in a different manner as well to ensure a fair as well as qualified evaluation from consumers. In order to accomplish this task.

The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit was first provided to a variety of mothers to get hands-on experience in the household environment. The mothers were all consistent in their overall evaluation comments; the children were able to actually feel more a part of their mother's labors in the kitchen because The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit provided the means to do so. It was a very prominent point made with the mothers of "versatile and easy to adjust the tower to fit the specific needs..." As one mother expressed. "This thing is SO cool! My daughter can now reach the counter in the kitchen where I am working and help me with my preparing meals or washing the dishes." She went on to make it quite clear of how her daughter "was not only able to reach the counter but do so safely!"

As the second phase of evaluation, we took The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit to a private pre-school and Head Start Program in the Los Angeles area in California. At both facilities, the facility directors were quite clear that they would not be easy to impress, but were willing to give The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit a try. It is obviously important to ensure nothing but the very best in child care concerns at these facilities.

At the private pre-school facility, The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit was placed in the kindergarten class. It was amazing to see how the children literally were in awe at the colorful new addition to the room and were quite eager to experience playing with it and in it! The teacher of the class explained to the children the class rules about play in The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit, then turned them loose. What was most amusing was how the girls wanted to make it a "girls thing" and the boys wanted to make it an virtual fort. I was personally fascinated how the children could use their imaginations to make The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit become whatever their little creative minds could conceive. The teacher used The Learning Tower during reading time to allow one of the children to sit next to her as she read a story about a spider and a frog. As the teacher expressed to me, "This was so wonderful how my student was able to be sitting in The Learning Tower and able to be at the same level as myself instead of sitting on the floor." "The Learning Tower served as a tool to help my student develop a sense of respect and value being able to turn the pages of the book for me as I read the story to my students."

At the Head Start program facility, The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit was placed in the "pretend area" where there were miniature stoves and other items which the children were familiar with at home which Mom and Dad use and the children could mimic the lifestyle of their parents. In this case it was interesting because the boys had no real interest in The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit yet the girls were prompt to take it over to play house and at one point pretended it was a restaurant where they would serve imaginary drinks to the fellow students of the class. The facility director made me fully aware of how she felt "This tower is such an excellent addition to the learning environment for these children...it contributes so greatly to their interactive and cognitive skill development."

In both cases of the usage of The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit at these facilities, it actually hurt in a sort of way to have to remove the product from the facilities. The children were so overjoyed in their playing with it and I was saddened to have to tell them it wasn't a permanent part of the classrooms. To see children reacting in such an incredibly positive manner with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit was such a joyful experience that will not be soon forgotten. In reading the review documentation from both facility directors you could so easily see how they felt that The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit would be "a valuable asset to virtually any learning environment whether at home or school." As one of the directors stated, "This is one HOT product which is good for not only constructive play, but parent/child interaction as well."



While other organizations will define their ratings in a "blanket" method which simply defines each rating in an overall usage, we choose to take a different approach. Each individual rating that was assigned to this product, based upon our evaluation process, is briefly explained as to how that specific rating score was reached. The ratings for this product are listed below.

Design Quality: Rating Level 5 - The design quality of the Toilet Buddies™ is a literal masterpiece of creative thinking. Well crafted in its design, materials used, quite effective in its intended purpose, it showed it will hold up to long term extensive use with little or no wear occurring. Very strong detail was committed to the design of this product to ensure nothing but satisfaction from a buyer whether commercial or consumer.

Durability: Rating Level 5 - The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit scored well when it comes to durability. Having been used in two different day care facilities for several weeks each and used in consumer evaluation testing with mothers in New York and Las Vegas, no sign of wear and tear developed in the product. In our own testing we pushed the joints to the limits yet there were no apparent sings of weakness of wear.

FunFactor™: Rating Level 5 - FunFactor™ was as easy as can be with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit. Children are quick to be captivated by the product. Laughter was a commonality associated with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit and it undoubtedly scored well in regard to FunFactor™ with a perfect score. It was quite interesting how in virtually all manners of use with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit, the FunFactor still remained high.

Innovation: Rating Level 5 - Innovation is synonymous with The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit. Kids furniture is generally nothing more than just furniture yet The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit clearly goes well beyond the definition of furniture with the unique feature of being able to be adjusted to serve multiple creative purposes. Unlike toys and other items, The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit is a different creature with no other product to model it after. It is original and holds the highest level of innovation in this rating score. The combination of color, functionality, and simplicity is outstanding. This was a very innovative approach in toddler furniture and learning products.

Marketing Value: Rating Level 5 - The marketing value of this product is nothing but the highest. The potential of this product is well above average and proves no challenge in gaining attention, while at the same time proving true to its purpose. This product is without question a specialty product which breaks the barriers where others have failed. When you consider the factor of it being applicable for use in so many different applications, it is clear to see the marketing value is well beyond what is needed to pull a scoring of five for this rating.

Visual Appeal: Rating Level 4 - When it comes to visual appeal, this was far from being an easy call. From a structural and materials The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit is impressive, but we have to take into consideration that The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit are two separate items. Without The Playhouse Kit, The Learning Tower is rather plain, despite the beautiful finished wood of the product. Consumers may not see the full value of The Learning Tower and The Playhouse Kit right from the start thus it falls short of a perfect score of "5" in this category by a single point. This is scoring of "4" rating without a doubt.






EVALUATION RESULTS - From evaluation for induction into "The Toy Man® News & Reviews"
       
    Overall Rating:   5
     
    Seal of Approval:  
     
    Recommends Award:  
       
       
    eco-Recognition™ Seal:  
     
    Award of Excellence:  
     
    eChoice™ Award:  
       
       
    S. T. E. M. Award:   
     
    Mom Approved Award:  
     
    Award of Recognition:™  
       



THE TOY MAN® SEAL OF APPROVAL

"The first and original Seal of Approval®...
designed for product recognition and validation."


Since 1971 The Toy Man® Seal of Approval has served as an emblem of professional recognition for a 
product or service having met the strict evaluation standards of The Toy Man® Product Guide. Since 1971, "The Toy Man® Seal of Approval" has served as an emblem and standard for professional recognition of a product or online service having met the globally recognized evaluation standards of The Toy Man® Product Guide.

This emblem was first established in 1971 by the International Parenting Institute™. It is modeled after the "Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval®", an emblem of recognition for products which meet the globally recognized high standards set forth by the Good Housekeeping Institute®.





THE TOY MAN® ECO-RECOGNITION SEAL

"An emblem of the highest recognition...
for support of ecological concerns applied in full measure."

The Toy Man® eco-Recognition Seal™, by Rev. James
G.W. Fisher, (Chief editor and Product Evaluation Specialist of The Toy Man® Product Guide), and staff.  
These products have demonstrated that they possess the potential as well as high probability to be top sellers.
The Toy Man® eco-Recognition Seal™ embodies the highest recognition for products and services which provide a significant contribution to ecological concerns by one or more of the following;
- earthFriendly™ / Recycled / Recyclable materials are being used primarily or entirely in the manufacturing of the product.

- Product is or will soon be available exclusively or primarily online.


THE TOY MAN® AWARDS

"These are globally recognized awards that are received by a limited few,
yet they provide the well earned recognition well beyond the average that is truly deserved!"

"The Toy Man® Award of Excellence" is awarded to inductees that have an overall Evaluation Category Rating Average, ECRA™, of [5] Stars. That is the highest level of rating available on a 1-5 scale evaluation model. The ECRA is based upon the overall average from all applicable evaluation categories"
PLEASE NOTE: There are a total of 357 evaluation categories with a minimum of 231 being applicable to any one product or online service in our evaluation process with 6 being featured in the Evaluation Report Summary, ERS.


The Toy Man® eChoice™ Award, by Rev. James
G.W. Fisher, (Chief editor and Product Evaluation Specialist of The Toy Man® Product Guide), and staff.  
These products have demonstrated that they possess the potential as well as high probability to be top sellers.
The Toy Man ®An image of the editorsChoice logo Award serves as an emblem of recognition for products & online services that contribute substantially to positive skill growth and/or productivity.

This distinguished award is exclusive as well as unique, with the editor's signature which represents a product being selected as an An image of the editorsChoice logo
PLEASE NOTE: The eChoice™ Award images which were used from 1971-1984, 1984-2007 and 2007-April 2010 have been retrired. Although the versions of the eChoice™ Award have been retired, they still remain valid.
 


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