Parents are overwhelmed with promos and advertising for toys in every holiday season that promise make their kids smarter, happier and even more successful. These toys are usually involved in modern technology, often expensive or are unique in another way with added sound or the like, or they are an evolution from the latest edition of a favourite video game or the latest movie.
The ads make me sad as a paediatrician because it’s rare for toys to help children be happier, successful or smarter genuinely. Here are the three types of toys I wish all parents would give their children based on our knowledge about child development and health.
Toys that need imagination and may be played with in lots of different ways
What gets things started should be the toy while the rest should be up to the child. Children need to learn to be creative, come up with ideas, and think things thoroughly. This day’s, Lego sets and video games can have implications on how children learn and think. Here are few examples of toys that spur imagination and creativity:
- Building sets that can develop lots of different things or blocks (plain wooden ones are great).
- Drawing, writing, and painting material with lots of blank paper. Instead of buying pads of paper for older children, you can buy blank comic books or blank books.
- Dollhouses and model houses for both girls and boys to go inside them, with something like mini dining rooms sets and chairs, the simpler, the better.
- Buy simple non-electronic boats, cars, and airplanes. Buy tracks that can be rearranged if you wish to buy one. Consider getting a play mat of a town that the cars can drive around.
- A play kitchen (add chef’s hat and apron)
- Buy dress up clothes such as capes, robes, cowboy hats, and wizard’s hats.
You could buy more of then if your first reaction were that, these clothes would bore your child. Children need to be bored as odd as it sounds because boredom breeds creativity. They will miss out on significant chances to create and explore; they will never master to entertain themselves if they are always entertained.
Toys that promote interaction especially with caregivers and parents
The “serve and return” communications between adults and children are crucial for building links in the brain; this is one thing we have discovered about child development, most especially with small children, they are also vital to building relationships. Building a strong foundation in childhood is also beneficial when they become teens; good parent to child relationships make a huge difference in the emotional health of children. A healthy relationship with the parent makes them less likely to get into trouble or have sex early.
It’s advisable to buy toys that you can share with your child. You can get shared experience from the example above. You can play build block with your child or restaurant with them. Here are some ideas:
- Games can be an ideal way to play together whether it’s board or checkers game. There are best family board games or myriad game out there for any age group. You can get lots of suggestions through Google search.
- A model you can build together or something else you make together (ensure your child can do it too not just you).
- A tent either a smaller one that you can use in the living room and hang out together or a big one to camp in together.
Toys that get your child moving
The exercise habits began in childhood and can last a lifetime; It’s not only crucial for your child’s health. Below are some examples of a few things that will encourage exercise:
- Jump ropes
- Ice skates or roller skates
- A bike or scooter (keep in mind to pick up a helmet)
- A ball (soccer ball, basketball, baseball,) with something to add to it like a basket, bat or mitt.
Children will learn a well from playing with toys. When giving a child educational toy to play with it gives your child a chance to bond with you. To have fun and learn at the same time. This makes learning enjoyable. With Your help your child will learn and develop a positive attitude toward learning.