If you are like many parents these days, you are on a quest to find new ways to entertain the kids at home. This may be a good time to turn to a classic source of fun that requires no charging, batteries or Wi-Fi, making it screen time parents don’t have to limit.
This year, Etch A Sketch is celebrating 60 years of unplugged creativity and pencil-free drawing. Here is a brief look at the history and major milestones of this iconic red-framed drawing toy:
• 1955: French electrician, André Cassangnes came up with the idea to create a drawing toy when he made pencil marks on a decal and noticed that the image transferred to the opposite face.
• 1959: Paul Chaze, owner of a smaller plastic injection molding company, agreed to invest in the product and produce the official tooling. The product was originally called “Telecran,” based on the recent availability of TV sets in France.
• 1960: Cassangnes collaborated with Jerry Burger of the Ohio Art Co. to perfect the system still incorporated into the Etch A Sketch today. They shipped more than 600,000 units in the spring, and it was the number one Christmas toy that year.
• 1998: Etch A Sketch was added to The Strong’s National Toy Hall of Fame.
• 2011: Time Magazine named the Etch A Sketch in its “All-Time 100 Greatest Toys” list.
• 2016: Spin Master, a global children’s entertainment company, acquired the Etch A Sketch brand from the Ohio Art Co. That same year, Spin Master achieved a Guinness World Record title for the most amount of people drawing on an Etch A Sketch globally at the same time.
• 2020: To-date, 175 million Etch A Sketches have been sold in multiple variations, styles and colors. To shake things up, Etch A Sketch joined forces earlier this year with other iconic brands and names for a series of limited edition variations of the toy, including MONOPOLY, NASA-inspired, Rubik’s and Stan Lee editions. To mark the milestone anniversary, Spin Master has made these shake-to-erase collectors items available at Walmart and Walmart.com, while supplies last.
To purchase, learn more and get inspired to make your own masterpieces in honor of the anniversary, visit etchasketch.com.
Sparking the imagination and fostering creativity, this classic toy has been a great way for people of all ages to have fun at home for 60 years and counting.