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CONTACT: KidStuff Public Relations
Lisa Orman • 608-767-1102



Baton Rouge, LA (October 12, 2009) – Parents of emerging readers have all sorts of tools at their disposal to expose their children to the wonders of reading. The problem is, while old-fashioned flash cards may be useful, kids don’t like using them because many are devoid of fun and excitement, and not visually appealing. But Dr. Toy has done the homework for busy parents and tapped the charming Alphabotz™ by Ideopolis for its eye-catching Superphonic Decoder Cards as 100 Best Children’s Products of 2009.

To be named to the 100 Best list, products must pass the high standards of Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, (aka Dr. Toy) one of the nation’s and world’s leading experts on play, toys, and children’s products. Children ask to play with Alphabotz because of the lively graphics, fun colors, and stories.

“Dr. Toy recognizes that we are committed to doing things differently, as we celebrate the joy and wonder that is childhood,” explains mom inventor and educator Pat Vining, one of four founders of Ideopolis LLC, creators of the Alphabotz. “We create innovative products that raise the bar as opposed to settling for minimum standards. Injected with humor and the honesty of a child, our quality educational products will engage and motivate children in a fun-filled way—and serious learning will occur before they even know it, inspiring a love of learning that stays with them throughout their lives.”

In announcing Alphabotz as one of the 100 Best Children’s Products this year, Dr. Toy writes on her website,

Alphabotz Superphonic Decoder Cards • $19.95 • Age Range 3-7
These cards jump start beginning reading skills by building lasting associations between sounds and the letters that represent them. The Alphabotz characters were developed by a teacher and parent to personify 46 sounds of the English language in a unique and fun way, and to help children unlock the secrets to this code adults call reading. The stories and adventures involving the Alphabotz support the idea that letters equal sounds, sounds build words, and words tell amazing stories. The colorful robot characters engage children and help motivate kids to develop letter recognition and letter-sound associations, while inspiring a rich vocabulary. Each robot wears a letter or letter team on its chest and an icon on its head that serves as a constant visual reference to the sound the letter or letter team makes. Each card also contains information about the character that tells a story about its life and personality in order to make the sounds memorable and aid in letter recognition and phonemic awareness skills. These colorful cards are beautifully designed, and introduce children to the characters, one by one. The cards are intended to be enjoyed by children and adults together and include two additional Game & Activity Cards containing simple instructions and multiple games for different skill levels that provide learning and fun.

Stevanne Auerbach, PhD/Dr. Toy, author of 15 books and hundreds of articles on toys and play, is the only PhD in Child Development evaluating the best developmentally appropriate toys and children’s products for Dr. Toy’s Guide ( with links to many related useful sites and resources for parents, teachers, children, and toy enthusiasts. Dr. Toy, author of Dr. Toy’s Smart Play/Smart Toys, a book that provides tools to enhance the child’s “PQ” (Play Quotient). The book is published in the US and in China, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Korea, Russia, Spain and Thailand. In addition, Dr. Auerbach, who is trained in child psychology, education, special education, and child development, was a teacher and reading specialist for many years, and even worked for the Commissioner of Education, where she reviewed reading programs throughout the country. Because of Dr. Auerbach’s expertise and many years of experience in education and reading, Ideopolis is especially thrilled to have been awarded a 100 Best Children’s Products of 2009 by Dr. Toy.

Four founding partners, Pat Vining, Kelly Barton, Randy Barton, and Nicole Sigsby launched Alphabotz as the first of many educational products. They all agreed that a technically sound, multi-strategy approach to reading -- that was also fun and engaging -- was missing from the juvenile marketplace. The Baton Rouge, LA-based company is enthusiastic about launching other innovative educational programs in 2010.

For more information on Ideopolis and Alphabotz, visit their award-winning interactive website at



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