Grandparents.com does not accept financial incentives in exchange for favorable reviews. If we write favorably about something, it's because we think it's a good product or idea. We did not receive any money to do so. Our editors have complete freedom to choose the things that they want to cover, and those they do not. Our editors and writers decide what they want to write about solely based on the promise of delivering the latest and greatest when it comes to all things relating to grandparents and grandchildren. They are free to cover any products and services they like, provided they meet that one guiding principle. Sometimes, we receive free samples of products from manufacturers. We use these samples to review the products before we write about them. Some of these samples are given to families and other testers to provide us with feedback. Others are tested by people who work at Grandparents.com. Generally, sample products are either donated to local charities after testing or kept by the reviewer. In any event, manufacturers do not provide us any consideration for the products we write about or what we write about them.
Once our editors make these decisions and choose to run a particular item, our business development team may contact the company providing that service to create an affiliate relationship with them. Through such relationships, the provider may pay Grandparents.com an affiliate fee for putting a link on our website to their website. Not only does this provide our users with an easy, one-click means to purchase much sought after items, but it also allows Grandparents.com to generate revenues essential to sustaining our businesses. As a well-informed consumer, we know that you understand that Grandparents.com needs to generate revenue if it is to continue providing high quality information. These affiliate relationships are one way we generate such revenue.
In addition to affiliate relationships, Grandparents.com will accept advertising from appropriate companies for which it receives payments. Advertisements will be clearly marked as advertisements. As a member of our community, we will endeavor to ensure that there is absolutely no confusion as to the source of anything on our site.
Activities & Events
The Activities & Events section lists options as varied as our community. Each activity goes through an assessment by our in-house editors and local tipsters and is rated on a grandparent-grandchild "friendliness" scale. We account for educational value, entertainment value, and whether an activity is interesting and novel, or time tested and unavoidably classic. We also try to balance high-energy experiences, such as rock-climbing and mountain biking, with more low-key offerings, such as theater and sporting events.
We have tipsters all over the country whose job is to be our eyes and ears as to what's happening in their city. They're on top of the grandparent-grandchild scene on a daily basis, and as such, we update our lists regularly.
Criteria for Toy Review
Grandparents.com uses a defined set of criteria when selecting toys, games, and gear for editorial review. Our editorial staff rates each toy based on those criteria, and picks those that ranked highest for review. Below is a list of what we look for:
- "Wow Factor": Toy, game or product breaks traditional mold in design or concept. Either an innovative twist on a classic product or a completely original product you haven't seen before.
- "Must-Have": Toys, tools, or gear that are essential for both new and longtime grandparents. Whether it's a classic DVD your grandchildren will watch repeatedly, or a portable crib, it's something we think every grandparent should own.
- Ease/Portability: Product is easy to assemble and/or easily portable for the traveling grandparent or grandchild.
- Responsible: Product is either made from sustainable material or manufactured using ecologically responsible methods. Purchase of product may help charitable causes or promote fair trade.
- Grandchild/Grandparent Reviewed: Product has been used and evaluated by our extensive network of family testers, the majority of whom have given the product a favorable review.
- Value: Product offers the most bang for your buck. Seemingly expensive products last long enough to warrant their price, and inexpensive products are not otherwise "cheap."
- Classic: Whether it is a new toy we are sure grandchildren will be playing with for years to come, or the same set of Tinkertoys you enjoyed as a child, these products are more than mere fads.
- Collaborative Play: Toy, game, or activity set grandparents and grandchildren can play with together. Young grandchildren understand this toy or game, but it is not so rudimentary that it will bore grandparents who are playing along. Product promotes bonding and learning through grandparent/grandchild interaction.
- Universally Accessible: Toy, game, or product is something grandchildren with special needs can understand, enjoy, and benefit from as well.
- Educational Benefits: In addition to fun, this is a toy, game, or activity set from which your grandchild will learn a new skill, or refine existing skills (motor skills, hand-eye coordination, communication, problem-solving, etc.).
- Physical Benefits: This is not a toy or game your grandchild can sit for hours and play with; it requires your grandchild to get up and move! Whether it's a video game like Dance Dance Revolution or a new Nerf Football, the product requires the physical exertion of your grandchild, promoting an active lifestyle and combating childhood obesity.
- Social Benefits: This is not a toy or game your grandchild can play solo; it requires more than one participant. Toys, games, and activity sets that require more than one player enhance social skills, promote interpersonal communication, and group cooperation.