Presenting Dr. Toy's Books

  • Foreign Rights handled by Sebastian Literary Agency, St. Paul Minnesota.
  • Dr. Toy available for interviews, presentations and in-store book signings (toys, books, children's products, teacher and children's museum stores).
  • Media contact Publicity, St. Martin's Press, 212-674-5151 ext. 506

  "Toys for a Lifetime" 

Ultimate toy gift book, including enticing color photos by Ben Asen, Developmental benefits of each selection, inc. tons of interesting tips and factoids.



Dr. Toy’s Smart Play: How to Raise a Child With a High P.Q.*(Play Quotient)




Stevanne Auerbach, Ph.D./ Dr. Toy
Director, The Institute for Childhood Resources, San Francisco, CA.
St. Martin’s Press, Griffin Trade Paperback, New York, February,1998.

Purchase on- line from Amazon Books, e-toys, or at your local favorite book or toy store.

See also


  • Written by a child development, psychology and education specialist with more than 25 years of experience Dr. Toy’s Smart Play helps parents learn about the importance of play and the role of toys and other children's products in their child’s development.
  • This book explains why play is essential in developing a well-rounded, resilient child and indicates the types of toys and playthings most valuable in supporting the child’s fullest potential- mentally, physically, emotionally and socially.
  • Dr. Toy helps parents understand the child’s developmental stages and the P.Q.—the Play Quotient. They learn why toys and playthings are important, how to be their child’s "Play Tutor," how to help their child use toys wisely at each stage, plus what is safe and smart to purchase.
  • Parents learn to appreciate why playing together helps to strengthen and improve parent-child relationships. Dr. Toy provides many practical ideas to enhance playtime, indoors and outdoors, for all children from baby to older children.
  • Dr. Toy’s Smart Play is based on Dr. Auerbach’s many years of training, experience with toys and children’s products and observations of thousands of children at play.
  • Dr. Toy points out that parents are their child’s first "Big Toy" and as such must teach them the skills necessary to learn and grow through play.
  • This book, is a guide to selecting the best types of basic, beneficial products from among the many products offered at good children’s stores. Parents learn what to look for while observing their child at play, how to better understand the signs of readiness and when to introduce the right toy to facilitate optimal developmental skills and, of course, have fun.
  • Dr. Toy's reports, Dr.Toy’s Best Toys and Products, and others are found free on the world wide Internet at visited by thousands of consumers daily. Her weekly column, Dr. Toy, for King Features Syndicate is distributed to 1,500 newspapers. With the book's release Dr. Toy will appear in the media, in selected book and toy specialty stores, at conferences and in other locales.

©1998, Stevanne Auerbach, Ph.D./Dr. Toy, San Francisco, Ca.


  • For more information
  • Foreign Rights handled by Sebastian Literary Agency, San Francisco, California.
  • Dr. Toy available for interviews, presentations and in-store book signings (toy, book, children's products, teacher, software and children's museum stores).
  • Media contact Chris Ahearn, St. Martin's Press, 212-674-5151 ext. 506.


  • Dr. Stevanne Auerbach really understands children, play and toys. This book is a wonderful resource for parents, teachers and everyone who works and plays with children.
    Michael B. Rothenberg, MD.
    Professor Emeritus Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and Pediatrics
    University of Washington, School of Medicine
    Co-author, Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care( 1985, 1992) Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is a very comprehensive book, easy to read for parents and very useful for professionals. Beyond the use of toys and play I would celebrate the attention Dr. Toy gives to family relationships of children's quality of life turning parents into "Play Tutors"-the play guardians of their children.
    Nilda G. Cosco
    Director, Lekotek
    Buenos Aires, Argentina Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is a fabulous read. It will help both parents and marketers gain keen insights into the importance and selection of a child's playthings.
    Gene Del Vecchio
    Senior Partner, Director of Planning & Research, Ogilvy & Mather
    Author of "Creating Ever Cool, A Marketer's Guide to a Kid's Heart" Return to List Next
  • Play, especially active, creative, and educational play, helps children develop such basic social and academic skills as concentration, problem solving, communication, and cooperation. Factors such as safety, durability, flexibility, and age appropriateness complicate the challenge parents face in choosing the right toys for their children at the right time. Auerbach applies her scientific but not preachy expertise to that challenge. She relies as much on common sense and parenting insight as on scholarly research to suggest toys ranging from brooms and plastic cups to books and watercolors to amuse, stimulate, and activate children. Individual chapters describe developmental progress from infancy through age 12, advising age-appropriate toys and products as well as items for children with special needs. For backup to the book, Auerbach, familiar to many for her syndicated column, "Dr. Toy," maintains a Web site for toy evaluation. (ISBN 0-312-18089-6).
    Kathryn Carpenter
    American Library Association, Feb. 15, 1998 Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is the best tool out there for parents, grandparents,teachers and anyone else with children in their lives. It's a quick and entertaining read, packed full of valuable information and ideas dealing with childhood development. I've quoted from it in Baby Magazine and Parenting, and I won't hesitate to use it again when I write another article about children and their toys. My only regret is this book wasn't around when my kids were young
    JJ Despain, journalist Return to List Next
  • Play truly is the work of childhood. Stevanne Auerbach (Dr. Toy) offers both practical advice and subtle insights for parents on how they can help their children make the most of play without spending a lot of money. This is really useful stuff!
    Lawrence Kutner, Ph.D.
    Child Behavior Columnist
    Parent's Magazine Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is a must-have reference for any parent. It applies a wealth of vital knowledge on how toys can enhance the intellectual development and growth of children. "Smart Play" is hands-on, and fun!
    Alexandra Tornek
    Parent/infant researcher Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is a great guide for anyone searching for the right toy for creative play, building developmental skills or for just plain fun. Its easy to use and well organized. Invaluable!
    Alice Bergman
    West Side Kids Toy Store (ASTRA member)
    New York City, NY Return to List Next
  • Stevanne Auerbach takes a hands-on, practical approach that demonstrates to parents how best to select good toys and foster the benefits of developmentally-consistent play with their children. Moreover, this comprehensive guide provides valuable insights...especially for those of us who shape and influence toys of the future!
    Moss Kardener,Consultant
    Marketing & Product Development
    OnStrategy, Oakland, California Return to List Next
  • The first book to explain exactly how and why children play as they do at various stages of their lives, "Dr. Toy's Smart Play" should be required reading for product designers, inventors and toy developers. Presented in a friendly, easy-to-read fashion, we need this information to truly understand how the products we create are used by parents and children alike. This book would make a great text for those in toy biz.
    Joel Delman
    Product Developer,
    Chicago, IL Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play Everything you want to know, but more important-what you need to know.
    Vicki Lansky, author of: "Feed Me I'm Yours" and..
    "Games Babies Play and Practical Tips for Years 1-5"
    Return to List Next
  • A great resource for this grandma who is always looking for special toys and activities. All children are special and this book addresses this specialness by helping adults appreciate the wonders of play.
    Helen Webber
    San Raphael, CA Return to List Next
  • As a busy working parent this book is useful, practical and a much needed resource. It is well planned, valuable and must have resource to use year after year.
    Kim Thompson
    President, Twin Sisters Productions
    Akron, Ohio Return to List Next
  • Dr. Toy's Smart Play is a remarkable book. Although it is addressed to the parent (a child's first teacher) it will also contribute greatly to the teaching skills of teachers and child care workers. Dr. Auerbach includes an excellent overview of development beginning with infants through age twelve. Her resources are carefully chosen and well documented. As a long time educator I strongly recommend this book. Play is a child's work and Dr. Toy details how a knowledge of and involvement in play can enhance a child's growth in all areas. I urge you to read this important, wonderful and insightful book.
    Dr. Betty Halpern
    Professor Emeritus
    Sonoma State University,CA Return to List Next
  • Smart Play + Smart Parents = Smart Kids. Stevanne Auerbach, Ph.D. writes with the rare power of original analysis. Smart Play is the most significant, thorough and thoughtful book yet for parents wishing to match the right toy to the right stage of their child's early development. Follow Dr. Toy's prescription for a happy and skill building childhood.
    Richard C. Levy
    Toy Inventor & Author
    Inside Santa's Workshop & The Inventor's Desktop Companion Return to List Next
  • Even before Frederich Froebel invented the kindergarten and popularized the slogan of "Come, let us live with our children" during the 1840's, philosophers and wise parents recognized the importance of play. Developmental psychologists have emphasized its importance throughout the twentieth century. Recent Scientific discoveries about physical changes in the brain when babies and young children are intellectually stimulated now validate this old idea. We recognize that school readiness begins at birth and that family members are the best possible Play Tutors. There are incredible opportunities, but a lot of confusing alternatives. I'm delighted to know that Dr. Toy's Smart Play will be available to guide parents. It is filled with informed wisdom, inexpensive suggestions and ideas for a lot of fun. Enjoy!
    Dorothy W. Hewes, Ph.D.
    Professor Emeritus
    Department of Child and Family Development
    San Diego State University, CA Return to List Next
  • Dr. Auerbach's new book, Dr. Toy's Smart Play, helps parents separate the wheat from the chaff in today's toy market. Research on brain growth and development in early childhood makes clear that stimulating learning experiences are critical in the first five years. This well-researched book shows parents and other care providers how to chose toys with lasting value and educational content and make the most of their children's playthings.
    Gina Moreland
    Board President
    Habitot Children's Museum
    Berkeley, CA Return to List Next
  • In Dr. Toy's Smart Play Dr. Auerbach draws on her many years of experience as a teacher, child development specialist, parent educator, syndicated columnist, author of books and, of course, parent and grandparent to bring together this inclusive, wise, clear book which provides excellent information based on her thorough understanding of both children and adults.
    Edgar Klugman
    Early Childhood Care and Education
    Wheelock College, Boston, Mass Return to List Next
  • There is only one definitive source on quality children's products and that is Dr. Toy. She is informed, knowledgeable and experienced. Her new book, Dr. Toy's Smart Play, provides answers to often asked questions. Every parent and teacher should have a copy. It's an invaluable resource.
    Shannon Tobin
    President & CEO
    Children's Interactive Expo
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A Sourcebook of Toys for Children

Here in one extensive volume is an informative and practical guide to selecting toys plus history of toys in America and interviews with leading experts in the field with many references and resources.
  • A limited number of copies available of this outstanding book. This is the only book in the field that covers the whole range of interests in toys from designing, testing,marketing and more.
  • Well -illustrated with photos by Grace Warnecke and others. You will find a hundred interviews, insights and information as found no where else.

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Comments About The Toy Chest:

Wonderful resource, Entertaining essays. Lengthy lists ....American Library Association

With this book you will never be at a loss for children's gift ideas...Everybody's Money

Dr. Auerbach lessens the confusion...Reaching into this toy chest brings forth loads of
information and practical guidelines..
. Christian Science Monitor

Dr. Auerbach spent three years evaluating more than 150,000 toys, visiting thousands of showrooms... her book offers practical advice....Good Housekeeping Magazine

Send $20 (check payable to Institute for Childhood Resources) covers postage and handling. Indicate name for autograph.

To: Dr. Toy
Institute for Childhood Resources
268 Bush Street
San Francisco, CA 94104



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Practical advice on what to look for when selecting child care centers, family child care homes, and in-home caregivers such as sitters and nannies. Includes many tips, checklists, and basics to help you in your search for the perfect situation for your child and your family.
  • Important checklists
  • Practical advice
  • Many resources

Send $10.00 (covers postage and handling). Check payable to Institute for Childhood Resources. Indicate name for autograph.

To:Dr. Toy
Institute for Childhood Resources
268 Bush Street
San Francisco, CA 94104

Comments about Keys to Choosing Child Care:

  • Excellent guide for parents needing information on any aspect of child care.
    T. Gassenheimer
    Contra Costa, CA.
  • Covers all the things I'd like parents to think about. I like its detail and specificity. Will recommend to any parent who asked for help. We ordered it for our library.
    Dr. Millie Almy
    University of California, Berkeley, CA.
  • Exceptionally well-written and informative.
    Dr. Joan Bergstrom
    Wheelock College, MA.
  • Excellent job. I would like to see the booklet in the hands of every parent.
    Dr. David Friedman
    Pediatrician, UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco, CA.
  • Concise, practical handbook for parents to help them choose the best possible child care in their community.
    Dixie de Vienne
    Step-parents Forum, Montreal, Canada

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