Every summer has the same problem : what will you do to keep your kid entertained and spark their imagination? Summer camp is not always the best option for older kids, and if your child is too young, suitable activities can be difficult to find. As you don’t want them to spend too many hours a day in front on their screen, you will want to find the best educational toys, or as we say: the hottest toys for summer!
When you think about toys, you think about “playing” and how your child might enjoy them. Professionals in the field of education see toys in a more holistic way, think about the “learning” and mental stimulation they provide as well.
EDUCATION AND PLAY: A SHORT HISTORY
In the 17th century, thinkers such as the philosopher John Locke began to study children’s play and even created games with specific learning objectives.
Between the 18th and 19th centuries, many theories about children’s play developed. The most important of these is certainly that of Friedrich Fröbel, who placed play at the center of his pedagogy. Fröbel is also considered to be the founder of the first kindergarten and developed new ways of playing which are still the basis of our building sets today.
At the end of the 19th century a new impetus was given to pedagogy by Maria Montessoriand Rudolf Steiner, who gave play a prominent place in their own schools.
WHAT IS CONSIDERED AN EDUCATIONAL TOY?
Educational toys (sometimes called “instructive toys”) are objects of play, generally designed for children, which are expected to stimulate learning. They are often intended to meet an educational purpose such as helping a child develop a particular skill or teaching a child about a particular subject.
Educational toys are a great way to keep your kids busy and happy. These educational playthings can be anything from building blocks that teach STEM skills, colouring books with themes like Agenda 21 or climate change awareness; they might even give you some ideas on what subject- Matter interests them most!
Janod – Giant world map puzzle 300 pieces$22.99
Lalaboom – Zippered tote set 48 piece beads$37.99
Janod – Puzzle botanical$16.99
Janod – Essential – How to count$30.99
Janod – Zigolos – Ducks stacker$28.99
Janod – Magneti’book – Boy’s costume$16.99
Janod – Hunt Box puzzle 36 pieces$16.99
Djeco – Wooden puzzle Forest’n’co$10.95
WHY ARE EDUCATIONAL TOYS IMPORTANT?
Research has shown that there are many educational benefits to using developmental toys and games with children. These products are known to help improve memory retention, coordination, and literacy skills. In addition, they can also help challenge a child’s mind.
For instance, when a child stacks blocks but fails to balance them, he or she sees them all falling into pieces. This type of activity can help teach cause and effect, as well as problem solving skills. Ultimately, using developmental toys and games can have a positive impact on a child’s IQ level.
DO EDUCATIONAL TOYS REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
Most people are familiar with the traditional educational benefits that come from playing with toys. For example, puzzles and building blocks can help develops a child’s problem solving skills, while dolls can teach them about sharing and conflict resolution. Pegboard puzzles, nesting cups or blocks, and buckets with holes for different shaped blocks are all great ways to challenge hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills as well.
However, there are many other educational benefits that come from playing with toys. For instance, children can learn about cause and effect by playing with simple mechanical toys. And when it comes to developing fine and gross motor skills, few things are better than good old fashioned building blocks .
But perhaps the most important benefit of all is that playing with toys nurtures a child’s creativity and imagination. After all, it’s where many adults get their best ideas!
HOW DO TOYS PROMOTE COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT?
Toys are an essential part of any child’s development. They give them the opportunity to practice different thinking skills, such as imitation and cause-and effect problem solving that lead into symbolic play where children use symbols for things they can’t actually see or do themselves yet!
It doesn’t stop at just cognitive abilities either; toy making also provides physical stimulation through movement while teaching patience by letting kids take their time putting everything back how it came out when done playing with one item – all this is before adding in some imaginative adventures based around what we find inside our toys too
HOW DO I CHOOSE A DEVELOPMENTALLY APPROPRIATE TOY?
Toys are a great way to encourage your child’s development, but not all toys work for every kid. You want one that will have different uses and be fun in various ways as they grow up!
Take some time when shopping around so you can find just what he or she needs most at each stage of life – it might take some trial-and error until we get there but hopefully our guide helps point out which ones seem like good candidates.
SAFETY AND CHILDREN’S TOYS
Safe toys for young children are well-made (with no sharp parts or splinters and do not pinch); painted with nontoxic, lead-free paint; shatter-proof; and easily cleaned.
Electric toys should be “UL Approved.” Be sure to check the label, which should indicate that the toy has been approved by the Underwriters Laboratories. In addition, when choosing toys for children under age 3, make sure there are no small parts or pieces that could become lodged in a child’s throat and cause suffocation.
LEARNING TOYS AND AGE GROUP
The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) provides a list that gives the type of toy needed depending on the age group.
NAEYC is a professional membership organization that works to promote high-quality early learning for all young children, birth through age 8, by connecting early childhood practice, policy, and research. We advance a diverse, dynamic early childhood profession and support all who care for, educate, and work on behalf of young children.
Toys for infants—birth through 24 months
The first year of life is all about exploration. Babies use their five senses to learn about the interesting new world around them: Does an object feel hard or soft? Sticky and rough ? What does it do if I drop it . Typically, they prefer faces and bright colors.
Infants are always on the move. They start out as babies who just want to sleep, eat and play with their toys but before you know it they’re rolling over or sitting up in a crawled-up position!
As time goes by these little movers will transition through many different stages like crawling around looking for things that elude them; then after some practice finding objects near hiding spots (such as under furniture) until finally standing upright without assistance– all while knowing what name belongs only theirs: “I.”
Good toys for young infants:
· Things they can reach for, hold, suck on, shake, make noise with
· Things to listen to—books with nursery rhymes and poems, and recordings of lullabies and simple songs
· Things to look at, like mirrors and colorful characters
Good toys for older infants:
· Pretend play with—baby dolls, puppets, plastic and wood vehicles with wheels, and water toys
· Things to drop and take out—plastic bowls, large beads, balls, and nesting toys
· Things to build with—large soft blocks, fridge phonics magnetic letter, and wooden cubes
Toys for 2-year-olds (toddlers)
Toddlers are rapidly learning language and have some sense of danger. Nonetheless, they do a lot more physical “testing” than most people realize: jumping from heights with both feet out in front or climbing atop furniture without being told not too; hanging by just their arm if there’s nothing holding onto it yet (they’ll learn fast); rolling around on the ground together while tearing up toys like puppies playing tug o’ war-all this time having fun!
They’re also very skilled at handling smaller objects such as wooden blocks that require precision pencil skills for construction projects ahead and develop their fine motor skills.
As toddlers become more aware of their surroundings, they start to play more and develop a sense for pretend. They may stack blocks or babble into toys while playing with them; some even drink from “big kid” cups! You might tucked away baby dolls night so she can have sweet dreams just like mommy would do…but don’t worry if he
Good toys for 2-year-olds:
· Things for solving problems—wood puzzles), objects to sort (by size, shape, color, smell), and things with hooks,buttons, buckles, and snaps
· Things for pretending and building—blocks, smaller transportation toys, construction sets, child-sized furniture (kitchen sets, chairs, play food), dress-up clothes, dolls with accessories, puppets, and sand and water play toys
· Things to create with—crayons and markers, large paintbrushes and finger-paint, large paper for drawing and painting, colored construction paper, toddler-sized scissors with blunt tips, chalkboard and large chalk, little genius starter kit, and rhythm instruments
· Picture books with more details than books for younger children
Toys for 3- to 6-year-olds (preschoolers and kindergarteners)
Preschoolers are a lot like adults in that they have longer attention spans than toddlers. They talk to you and ask questions all day long! But there’s one big difference—preschoolers love playing with friends whereas younger kids prefer spending time alone or with their parents (or other trusted adults).
For a preschooler, the world is their own magical place without limits. They think they have powers that can battle monsters and win or turn into princesses when it’s time for bed; but most importantly these moments allow kids to work through fears by overcoming them in playtime scenarios where there are no consequences of any kind! That is why they like toys inspired by the real life.
This type of fantasy helps young ones explore what they’re anxious about while also giving birth some much needed creativity with imagination exercises such as making new friends (or enemies) right before your eyes ́and exploring how those relationships change over different periods throughout childhood
Good toys for 3- to 6-year-olds:
· Things for solving problems—puzzles (with 12 to 20+ pieces), blocks that snap together, collections and other smaller objects to sort by length, width, height, shape, color, smell, quantity
· Things for pretending and building—many blocks for building complex structures, transportation toys, construction sets, child-sized furniture (“apartment” sets, play food), dress-up clothes, dolls with accessories, puppets and simple puppet theaters, and sand and water play toys
· Things to create with—large and small crayons and markers, large and small paintbrushes and fingerpaint, large and small paper for drawing and painting, colored construction paper, preschooler-sized scissors, chalkboard and large and small chalk, modeling clay and playdough, modeling tools, paste, paper and cloth scraps for collage, and instruments—rhythm instruments and keyboards, xylophones, maracas, and tambourines
· Picture books with even more words and more detailed pictures than toddler books
· If a child has access to a computer: programs that are interactive (the child can do something) and that children can understand (the software uses graphics and spoken instruction, not just print), children can control the software’s pace and path, and children have opportunities to explore a variety of concepts on several levels
7 YEARS AND UP
As children grow up and head towards pre-teenage, pretending is seen at “it’s for babies”. They like to play, to chat with their friends, but when they are at home they are bored: they can’t laugh with you as they can with their friends, and they are too old to consider housework as a game. So they need useful and creative activities.
Creative toys of making objects are interesting because they can give the object as gifts. Science activities allow them to play while learning real things and develop critical thinking. Nothing is better than experience to learn something: at this age the word of the adult is no longer enough.
When it comes to finding the perfect toy, there’s no need to look any further than you. That’s because your attention and affection are some of the most important things that your children need in order to grow and develop.
Just think about all the ways that you interact with your children on a daily basis. Whether it’s putting up a mobile for them to stare at, showing them how to stack blocks, or sitting down to paint together, you are always there for them, providing the love and attention that they need.
And that’s what makes you the perfect toy. So next time you’re trying to find the perfect toy for your little one, remember that you are always the best option. But if you need anything, MY BULLE TOYS is here to help!