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Academics' Choice Announces Top Brain Toys, Books, and Media of 2016

The independent Academics’ Choice Awards program and its seals of excellence are recognized worldwide by consumers and educational institutions as indicators of genuinely effective learning products that stimulate the mind, and develop critical thinking thinking skills for success in school and life.

Aptos, CA (PRWEB) December 16, 2016

Academics’ Choice today congratulates all winners of the Fall 2016 Academics’ Choice Awards, a prestigious seal of educational quality, reserved only for the best mind-building media and toys. The fall winners include brain-boosting products from VTech, Alex Brands, HeidiSongs, Know Yourself, PlayMonster, Square Panda, Merge VR, Rock ‘N Learn, Hamaguchi Apps, Waterford Institute, Oceanhouse Media, Inc., Peekapak Inc., Dooley Bear Adventures, Youth Digital, High Noon Books, South Florida PBS, Ascent IT Ltd, Brilliant Products Intl, Babyfonics, Visual Math Interactive, Mentoring Minds, Stages Learning Materials, Rhythm Child, Ozobot, Circuit Scribe, Song Wizard Records, Cricket Media, and more! A total of 51 products earned the award this fall. The full list of winners is posted online at

The Academics’ Choice Advisory Board consists of leading thinkers and graduates from Princeton, Harvard, George Washington University, and other reputable educational institutions. Product-appropriate volunteer reviewers, combined with the brainpower of the Board, determine the coveted winners. Entries are judged by category (i.e. mobile app, toy, book, website, magazine, etc.), subject area, and grade level, and evaluated based on standardized criteria rooted in constructivist learning theory.

“South Florida PBS is thrilled that our early education website, KidVision PreK, won the prestigious Academics’ Choice Smart Media Award. The value and increased recognition that comes with this award is unmatched by other honors. KidVision PreK brings life into the preschool classroom with fun and educational virtual field trips and accompanying activities. This award gives us wings to reach the classrooms that need us the most.” – Penny Bernath, Education Manager, South Florida PBS

“We are honored to have the Square Panda Phonics Learning System recognized as an Academics Choice award winner. Teachers and parents trust that our learning games build literacy skills through play and this is a testament to Square Panda’s dedication to helping children develop and advance reading fluency.” – Andy Butler, CEO of Square Panda

“Our goal is to make virtual reality accessible, simple, fun and safe for everyone ages 10 and up. The soft, durable foam used for the Merge VR Goggles is comfortable and easy to clean, so it’s perfect for sharing. Virtual reality allows children to explore a whole new and engaging way of learning, and we’re really excited to receive the Academics’ Choice Award.” – Andrew Trickett, Co-founder of Merge VR

Many of the products that are evaluated by the Academics’ Choice Awards team are donated to a variety of worthy charities including the Kids In Need Foundation and the Toys for Tots Foundation.

About Academics’ Choice:

Academics’ Choice helps consumers find exceptional brain-boosting material. Academics’ Choice is the only international awards program designed to bring increased recognition to publishers, manufacturers, independent authors and developers that aim to stimulate cognitive development. A volunteer panel of product-appropriate judges, including parents, educators, scientists, artists, doctors, nurses, librarians, students and children, evaluate submissions based on educational benefits such as higher-order thinking skills, character building, creative play, durability and originality. Only the genuine “mind-builders” are recognized with the coveted Academics’ Choice Awards.


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