Games and Toys History

Barbie vs. GI Joe


1.  Ruth Handler crated a toy she thought other children would like to play with.  What kind of toy would you like to invent?  Grab some paper and draw your idea of the perfect toy.  Would you play with it inside or outside? Is it something you can share, or is it something you play with by yourself?

2.  What is your favorite toy?  Is it an action figure, a doll or a stuffed animal?  Does it go on adventures with you?  Write a story about the adventures you have with your favorite toy.  It can be real or pretend.  Maybe you want to pretend your toy comes to life at night and saves the world!

3.  Make your own Barbie clothes!  You don’t need to buy special fabric for your one of a kind creations.  Ask an adult for an old tee shirt you can cut up and get creating!

Barbie dolls and GI Joe figures are two of the most popular toys of all time – with toys, accessories, and even cartoons made about them.  But, there was a time back in the 1950’s when nobody had every heard of them — because they hadn’t been invented yet! Who thought up these toys? How did the success of one lead to the creation of the other?  And how have they both evolved over time?

Listen to the short Who Smarted? episode for kids about Barbie vs. GI Joe for free here!

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