Yesterday was World Autism Awareness Day, and Toy Insider Mom Laurie Schacht stopped by CBS in New York to talk about toys that are both fun and beneficial to the development of a kids on the spectrum. For more on the products featured in this segment, check out the product notes below.

Peppy Pets
(TPF Toys)

  • Peppy Pups, the adorable, kid-powered plush puppies that walk, jump and prance like real dogs, have some new friends as TPF Toys introduces Peppy Pets.
  • These are cuddly plush pals with ultra-soft fur and feature a patented skeletal structure that emulates life-like movements and require no batteries.
  • Brimming with endless personality, each Pet runs, jumps, wiggles and waggles while being walked on its accompanying leash.
  • New pets for spring, and a new release for fall
  • Age: 4+
  • $19.99
  • Available: Amazon

Mickey and the Roadster Racers Pit Crew Toolbox (Just Play)

  • Join Mickey Mouse’s pit crew with the Roadster Racers Tool Box from Disney Junior’s new hit show, Mickey and the Roadster Racers! This awesome racer-themed tool box is designed to look just like the one Mickey uses in the show!
  • The set comes with 23 tools including a mallet, flat head screwdriver, 2 wrenches, play metal plates, screws, nuts, and nails.
  • The tool box even comes with a working peg board so little racers can put their tools into action. The perfect gift set for every Roadster fan!
  • For Ages 3+,
  • SRP $12.99,
  • Available: Toys “R” Us

Janod Tactile Puzzle – A Day at the Zoo (Alex Brands)

  • Janod Tactile Puzzle -A Day at the Zoo lets your little one bring the petting zoo home! Build the 20-piece puzzle to create a scene featuring 7 types of zoo animals in their habitats.
  • One of each animal is textured, so you can feel their fur or skin. Touch a flamingo, koala, tiger and more, they won’t bite!
  • Age: 3+
  • MSRP: $17.99
  • Available: Specialty Retailers

Janod Tactile Puzzle – My First Animals (Alex Brands)

  • Janod Tactile Puzzle -My First Animals lets your little one bring the petting zoo home! The wooden frame tray puzzle features a scene with 4 baby animals playing in a field.
  • Each piece has a handle, making it easier for little hands to grab and place. Under each animal is texture, so you can feel their fur. Touch a bunny, puppy, kitten or chick, they won’t bite!
  • Age: 1+
  • MSRP: $17.99
  • Available: Specialty Retailers

Janod Zigolos Forest Stacker (Alex Brands)

  • Janod Zigolos Forest Stacker is an adorable wooden stacking toy and puzzle. A wooden triangle base holds blocks that have pegs and holes to stay in place when stacked.
  • Mix and match the pieces to make crazy designs or solve the puzzle to create a bear, a tree and a mushroom. Includes 8 stackable blocks and a base.
  • 12 months+
  • MSRP: $21.99
  • Available: Specialty Retailers

Zigolos Bear Stacker and Rocker Baby Toy (Alex Brands)

  • Janod bear stacker lets your little one build their own toy.
  • Two wooden pieces and two furry pieces stack on a wooden rocker base, so when your child puts everything together correctly, they will have a rocking Polar bear they can name and call their own. And whenever the mood strikes, they can take him apart and rebuild.
  • Includes 4 stacking pieces and a rocking base.
  • Ages: 12 months+
  • MSRP: $17.99
  • Available: Specialty Retailers

LeapStart (LeapFrog)

  • The LeapStart interactive learning systems are designed to help build key skills and challenge kids to get ready for their next step in learning.
  • Using the stylus, kids can tap any page to activate audio responses and play activities designed to keep them engaged and coming back for more.
  • Each book in the library is packed with over 30 activities. Games, jokes and songs come to life, enticing kids to trace numbers, hunt for letters, compose their own music and so much more.
  • Ages 2-7
  • MSRP $39.99
  • Available: Amazon, Target, Toys “R” Us, Walmart

LEGO Creative Bricks Set (LEGO)

  • Build up a storm with this big box of classic LEGO bricks.
  • With lots of different windows and doors, along with other special pieces to inspire you, you can really run with your imagination.
  • Includes a wide range of LEGO bricks in dozens of different colors and frames to start building on, LEGO Classic is designed to inspire open-ended creativity.
  • Ideas included with the set and online at to help you get started.
  • Comes in a useful plastic storage box. Available in regular, medium, and large.
  • Ages: 4+
  • MSRP: $16.99—$49.99
  • Available: Toys “R” Us, Walmart, LEGO stores

Zoob Travler Building Set (Alex Brands)

  • The ZOOB Traveler 40 piece kit includes instructions to make 22 creations (or make up your own design) and a foam building base to steady your creations as you build them. It’s all packed in a sturdy, zippered storage bag with an adjustable length handle.
  • The kit includes: 40 pieces, soft storage bag, foam building base & easy to follow step by step instructions.
  • ZOOB pieces are based on a natural and living system and features 5 unique pieces that snap, click or pop together in different ways, making building easy and versatile. ZOOB building sets are unique in that the pieces move after they are put together, allowing for truly interactive creations.
  • Age: 6+
  • MSRP: $22
  • Available: Amazon

Lego Dimensions Starter Pack (Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment)
  • The LEGO Dimensions Starter Pack includes the videogame, bricks to build the LEGO Gateway, three LEGO Minifigures, Batman, Gandalf and Wyldstyle, plus the LEGO Batmobile, and the revolutionary LEGO Toy Pad, which allows players to transport special LEGO minifigures and models into the game, as well as direct in-game action all with the movement of the physical toys.
  • Build the minifigure heroes and fire up the game to start the experience, then follow the in-game building instructions to assemble the loose bricks into the LEGO Gateway. And place the structure on the LEGO Toy Pad.
  • Expand the adventure by collecting more minifigures, vehicles, gadgets, and new levels with the purchase of three different Expansion Packs.
  • Ages: 7+
  • MSRP: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, WiiU $89.99; Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 $79.99

Kinetic Sand Sandcastle Set (Spin Master)

  • Kinetic Sand is the squeezable sand you can’t put down! It sticks to itself and not to you!
  • It flows through your fingers like magic, leaving them completely dry. Kinetic Sand stimulates children’s creative skills, allowing them to create anything they can imagine over and over again.
  • The Kinetic Sand Sandcastle set comes with 1 pound of blue sand, 3 molds, a beach tool, and a sand box to play in—the creative possibilities are endless! Kinetic Sand never dries out, and this soft sand is easy to clean up.
  • Ages: 3+
  • MSRP: $19.99
  • Available: Walmart, Toys “R” Us

Kinetic Rock Rock Crusher Playset 
(Spin Master)

  • Kinetic Rock is real rock for real construction play. Make boulders and load them into the dump truck, use the real working rock crusher to turn molded bounders into rock and flatten out the rock to make smooth roads with the tamper tool.
  • Also, includes a poseable construction figure and the package doubles as a play space!
  • Includes: 12oz of Kinetic Rock, 1 Dump Truck, 1 Bucket, 1 Rock Crusher, 1 Character Figurine, 1 Rock Mold, 1 Tool, 1 Sign, and 1 Transformable Sand Box.
  • Age: 3+
  • MSRP: $19.99 USD
  • Available: Toys “R” Us, Target, Kmart

Floof (Play Visions)

  • Lighter than air. Soft and smooth to the touch. Easily mold shapes and see amazing detail! The possibilities are endless with Floof.
  • This new compound looks like snow, feels like a marshmallow and molds like clay.
  • Easy creative set includes 120-180g of Floof, different molds, shapes, and pieces.
  • You need to feel it to believe it!
  • Ages: 3+
  • MSRP: $14.99
  • Available: Walmart

Play Dirt (Play Visions)

  • Turn the muddy outdoor fun kids love, into the tidy indoor play parents need! Play Dirt is the artificial dirt that feels real, without the real mess.
  • Kids can enjoy a personal garden, dig up treasure, or pick at (fake!) bugs. Let the inner explorer loose as they set off on an outdoor adventure, inside!
  • Ages: 3+
  • MSRP: $12.99
  • Available: Walmart

Finding Dory Soft Lite (Tek 4 Kids)

  • These fun glowing friends for kids are the new and improved way to see in the dark! The Finding Dory Soft Lite is the button activated soft-formed glowing, bedtime pal that keeps kids feeling safe and comfortable through the night!
  • With an automatic shut-off mode after 10 minutes the Finding Dory Soft Lite is safe, plug-free and portable and makes the perfect companion for sleepovers, camping or other overnight adventures!
  • MSRP: $9.99
  • Ages: 3+
  • Available: Toys R Us, Walmart, Amazon

3-in-1 Activity Center Trampoline (smarTrike)

  • How can a ball pit get any better? When it transforms into a trampoline!
  • Designed for year-round fun, this 3 in 1 activity center is customized for both outdoor and indoor play! It’s a fresh addition to the smarTrike™ lineup.
  • It’s an easy setup and easily transforms from ball pit to trampoline.
  • Age: 10 months+
  • MSRP: 36” $99.99, 39” $149.99
  • Available: Toys R Us