Do toys affect child development?
It is a matter of fact that children love toys, but do toys affect child development? Aside from being a source of fun and games, toys can provide children with several opportunities to learn. If you are looking for the best toys that money can buy, choose the ones that can engage the senses, encourage them to interact with other people and flicker their imagination.
How do toys influence children’s lives?
Young children and babies are naturally curious because they have so much to learn about the world they live in. Every encounter with a new sound, taste, texture, colour and shape is a learning experience. With this in mind, it would make sense to give them toys that stimulate their senses. Musical toys and rattles are usually a favourite among infants, as well as toys with bright colours. As they grow, babies can learn object permanence and cause and effect from playing with their toys. At this stage, giving them toy blocks can help them develop their hand-eye coordination and motor skills.
More variety can be added when they grow into toddlers. They might still enjoy the same toys as they did when they were babies and there’s nothing wrong with that. As their knowledge and skills improve, you should also expose them to toys that are appropriate for their age. For instance, peg puzzles and block puzzles are great for their age. Using these toys, parents can guide their toddlers on how to match similar items or shapes and learn about colours.
Preschool and school age
Upon reaching preschool and school age, parents can focus on teaching their kids language skills, letters and numbers. Many toys, ranging from simple to high-tech, are designed to stimulate this kind of learning. For instance, you can prepare your children on what they will be learning in school by exposing them to fun and educational toys at home. Art easel sets are great for learning numbers and letters. Count and match number sets enable colour and number recognition, counting skills, stacking and shape sorting all in one wooden toy. Magic touch pianos, on the other hand, are great devices for teaching music, colours and numbers in a single toy. As soon as they begin their formal education, toys will give children the opportunity to practice the things they have learned in school, reinforcing what they have already learnt and increase their retention for these things.
It is a fact that children can learn a lot from purely playing with toys. Playing with them is also a great opportunity to create a bonding moment, guide them through their learning process and most importantly, have fun! Making education enjoyable will give them a positive attitude towards learning, a key skill that will also benefit them when they become adults.
How do toys stimulate babies?
A lot of experts agree that play is a vital part of the development of children; it influences their language, emotional, social and cognitive development. The kind of toys they are playing with also have an impact on their personality traits, as some toys will encourage aggressive play while others will encourage solitary play, onlooker play, parallel play, associative play or cooperative play. Just like adults, babies and young children are like scientists: they test various ideas, create hypotheses, evaluate results or even try to solve problems using their toys.
It is also important for parents to understand that aside from giving their babies toys, the type of toy, how they are using it and whom they are playing it with is also very important. According to many studies, it was often found that the more basic the toy, the better it is for them. Toys that may seem like the most interesting and coolest, such as those with screens, sounds and lights may actually be less beneficial for young children. Simple or basic toys with several possibilities for open play can stimulate the problem-solving and creative thinking of children and these are the kind of characteristics we want to see in them.
What age do children start to lose interest in toys?
Playing is vital in building the emotional development of a child. Although every child has different playing patterns, those from ages 2 to 6 are usually drawn to it. Just like adults, children have different thinking patterns every day, yet there are many similarities as to why children lose interest in playing with toys.
Toys are made with a specific design and a specific purpose in mind. When your child is bored with that purpose, the toy will no longer hold an appeal for them. Once the purpose of the toy has been exhausted, the child may not want to use it anymore or even use their imagination to play with it.
Children tend to get bored with their toys very fast and there are many reasons why. Don’t fret because below are some solutions that will help you make your children’s playtime more enjoyable.
- Overstimulation. If your children have too many toys, it can overwhelm them and lead them to shut other toys out. Try purging some of your toys or rotate a few ones around every now and then.
- Child development is fast. Children grow at a rapid rate. Their brain grows rapidly as well. By the time they become toddlers, their brains have reached 80% of their adult volume. Because of this rapid growth, they can grow bored with certain toys in only a matter of days, but try to look at this as a good sign. To keep them from losing interest in their toys, consider rotating them at a time.
- Toys are inappropriate for their age. The age of your children is a major factor in how much they will enjoy playing with a certain toy. When purchasing toys, take a look at the manufacturer’s suggested age range, your children’s cognitive development and whether they already have the necessary skills to play with it. For instance, if your baby is still struggling with grasping objects, you may have to give your baby some building blocks at a later age.
- Parent Engagement. Parents are usually the first playmate of children but in order for them to learn, parents must learn to give them time and space. Many experts agree that allowing your child to fiddle with a toy on their own before assisting them is very important. It will encourage your children to communicate with you and help develop their problem-solving skills and creativity.
So do toys affect child development? Every child is unique and it’s not a surprise that they will lose interest with some of their toys every now and then. Don’t fret. When purchasing toys, consider the factors that we have mentioned earlier so you will get a better idea on what toys they will go crazy for. If you are looking for toys that are age-appropriate, unique, fun, safe and educational, there is surely something that you will love at Beehive Toys!