Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

I Love Toy Trains – Rail Blazers

I Love Toy Trains – Rail Blazers

Fall 2017 DVD
Ages: 3 - 6 yrs.

Rail Blazers is another addition to the "I Love Toy Trains" series from TM Books & Video, Inc., which includes dozens of videos dating back to the early 1990's. This 34-minute DVD may not have very sophisticated production value but it will be eye-candy for very young train lovers.

Rail Blazers features video of both toy and real trains riding the rails in a variety of settings. The narrator, complemented by basic graphics, special effects, and playful original music, offers up an interesting - although random - assortment of facts, some of which may be a tad above the target audience of pre-school and kindergarten-aged kids. One sequence offers the popular "Roy G. Biv" pneumonic device to help kids remember the colors of a rainbow; another sequence presents the name of a commander from the first naval battle of the Revolutionary War; yet another sequence explains a 30-ton diesel switcher and then tells kids that "30 tons equals 60,000 pounds!"

More age-appropriate sequences include a ride aboard the "Dino Express" as the narrator provides facts about dinosaur habitats and eating habits as a toy train moves through a lay-out thick with vegetation and plastic dinosaurs.

One of the more original live-action sequences presents a unique way to get kids involved in a train-themed craft. Kids set up an oval train track on top of a large sheet of white paper and then they use crayons to plan and color their own lay-out. It's a low-cost and fun way to encourage creativity while drawing on a child's particular interests.

Little train-lovers also will enjoy the sequence in which a toy train moves through a carnival set, interspersed with live-action carnival footage; and parents and grandparents will be happy to watch alongside their children as Rail Blazers features a collection of patriotic toy locomotives designed to celebrate the Bicentennial.

There's something refreshing about the home-spun production. Rail Blazers offers a little bit of history and a lot of fun for train loving viewers of all ages.

Gina Catanzarite   ©2017 Parents' Choice
Gina Catanzarite is an award-winning television producer, writer, teacher, mom and media consultant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She began her career in 1987 and counts 9 Emmy awards, 26 Emmy nominations, a Matrix award, two Pennsylvania Broadcaster's Association Awards, 8 Telly Awards, and a screenwriting grant from the Theatre Association of Pennsylvania, among her professional honors.

Look for this product at:
TM Books & Video, Inc

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