Extras
 

From Furbys to robotic puppies, there are lots of fun, innovative and educational toys in the shops this year. Kate Hilpern picks the ones the kids (and big kids) will love

Leading Article: Housing policy must link with the market

HOUSING POLICY has a tendency to swing from one extreme to another, leaving the poor in forgotten backwaters of deprivation, washed up by the policies of the government before last. News that the Housing Corporation is to use taxpayers' money to knock down every third house in no-hope terraces in Manchester and Newcastle and turn them into rows of semi-detached houses is bound, therefore, to be dogged by the suspicion that, in one form or another, we have been here before.

The 50 Best: HOW TO BOOST YOUR CHILD'S BRAINPOWER

Children are under more pressure than ever to perform academically. Yet it is vital that they actually enjoy the experience of finding out about the world around them. So Emma Haughton asked five experts to recommend the best toys, games, books and CD-Roms to help children of all ages learn - and still have a busload of fun

Northern Exposure: Much more than just snow and Lego

When the cold recedes, the far north of Sweden is a welcoming wilderness, the ideal place to get away from it all

Games: Lego Media

The yo-yo has recently made a comeback. Action Man and Barbie are still bestsellers. So fears that the market for computer games would cause the death of simple, non-electronic, pastimes have been somewhat exaggerated - just as claims that TV or video would remove the public desire to go to the cinema have been out of step. History suggests that new formats will be embraced without extinguishing other forms of entertainment.

Now it's the technically modified Teletubby

CHILDREN IN future will probably have a diet consisting of chips with everything - in their toys, that is. Playthings are undergoing a revolution. Tomorrow's adults are already getting used to an idea that their parents find strange - of inanimate objects which respond to them, based on the computer chips inside them.

The Sketch: Beware ageing Tory men baring their sexual prejudice

"YOU SIMPLY cannot have it both ways," said Gerald Howarth indignantly, intervening during the Home Secretary's speech on the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill.

Lego lays off 1,000 as toys go digital

Technology: Traditional children's favourite in trouble as computer mania hits everything from shares to toys

Fashion: Just the ticket

On the street; What do tiny tots wear to see the Barney the dinosaur show? Hannah Hunter heads to Wembley Arena to investigate

Tried & Tested: Just The Ticket

Trains really can run on time - in your living-room. We track down the most reliable sets for railway children

Advertisers help parents beat commercials

THE ADVERTISING industry issued practical advice yesterday to help parents to cope with the annual outbreak of "pester power" from their children in the run-up to Christmas.

Design: Flexible friends

The latest modular furniture systems can be stacked or linked to make unique combinations. Jessica Cargill Thompson played with some of them. Photographs by Oscar Paisley

Don't leave home without one

FOR FUN on the slopes it's important to have the right equipment, and that goes for your children, too. Here's a pick of some essentials, and gadgets, for younger skiers.

Playing with the big boys

At first the toy firms scoffed at K'nex, says Roger Trapp. Now they've changed their minds and Lego has a fight on its hands

People and Business: Toy story is just a fable

EVERY BUSINESS success begins with an apocryphal tale, and the story of the top-selling children's construction toy K'NEX, now rivalling Lego, is no exception.
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent
Markus Persson: If being that rich is so bad, why not just give it all away?

That's a bit rich

The billionaire inventor of computer game Minecraft says he is bored, lonely and isolated by his vast wealth. If it’s that bad, says Simon Kelner, why not just give it all away?
Euro 2016: Chris Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Wales last qualified for major tournament in 1958 but after several near misses the current crop can book place at Euro 2016 and end all the indifference
Rugby World Cup 2015: The tournament's forgotten XV

Forgotten XV of the rugby World Cup

Now the squads are out, Chris Hewett picks a side of stars who missed the cut
A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life
'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

The Rock's Chief Minister hits back at Spanish government's 'lies'
Britain is still addicted to 'dirty coal'

Britain still addicted to 'dirty' coal

Biggest energy suppliers are more dependent on fossil fuel than a decade ago
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests