Despite technology stealing the spotlight from most toys, many people still love them. Enough that the next class of the National Toy Hall of Fame is on its way.
Every year quite a lot of toys compete for the opportunity to be selected for the US National Toy Hall of Fame. This is why there is a special process toys must go through to qualify. Established in 1998, the Toy Hall of Fame is situated in the Strong National Museum. So far it has inducted 56 toys.
Yes, just 56 toys out of thousands of applications that are received each year. Anyone can nominate a toy for the Hall of Fame. Then an internal committee reviews the applications. Based on the results, then it picks a class of finalists that fit the criteria of the National Toy Hall of Fame.
There are four main criteria. Icon status – is the toy widely recognized, respected and remembered. Longevity – is the toy more than a fad and has it been popular through multiple generations. Discovery – does the toy foster learning, creativity and discovery through play. Innovation – has it profoundly changed play or toy design – this is the most powerful criteria and it can earn a toy a spot in the Hall of Fame, even if it isn’t meeting the first three.
The finalists are then given to another committee of historians, inventors, psychologists and educators. They choose just two winners who get inducted into the Hall of Fame. The ceremony will be held on Nov. 5th 2015.
The finalists are:
- American Girl
- Coloring Book
- Super Soaker
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
- Wiffle Ball
Last year, the National Toy Hall of Fame inducted Rubik’s Cube, plastic green army men and bubbles (those soapy bubbles all children love to make). Already inducted are Barbie, Easy-Bake Oven, GI Joe, Frisbee, View-Master and many other toys.