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.
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker