Walk into a toy shop and you won’t have a problem knowing where the ‘boy’s toys’ are as opposed to where the ‘girl’s toys’ are. The superheroes and LEGO construction sets will all be in the ‘blue’ section, while princesses and ice-cream van LEGO sets will be in the decidedly ‘pink’ section.
What if your daughter is interested in building a LEGO aeroplane? Or your son would like a cooking set? Why should there be “rules” on which gender gets to play with what? Let children explore everything, and then decide for themselves what interests them.
Likewise, buying toys online for your children can be quite a challenging process, because there are endless options of toys and games out there. How do you know which will be the best for their age, their liking and provide entertainment as well as be educational? Furthermore, there are no clear-cut blue and pink sections. And with toys targeted at girls having evolved with the modernising of sex roles in society, there are diverse toys now available for both genders.
Many are promoted as ‘educational’ and ‘developmental’ but in reality offer little to no opportunities for the child to learn or develop essential skills and creativity. They are simply for entertaining the child with sounds and lights. The more the toy does the less your child will learn from it.
The best way of picking the right toy for your child is to opt for diverse toys that also help develop important motor, language, critical thinking, creative, coordination and social skills.After all, learning through play is the most effective way of helping your child develops crucial skills. Here are some useful tips that can help you choose toys that help nurture development and boost self-confidence and creativity while being entertaining.
Opt for ‘Open-Ended’ Toys
These are toys that can be used in numerous ways. Toddlers love adding structure, changing things, putting stuff together and then taking them apart. Toys such as pegboards, magnetic sets and blocks help in the development of problem-solving, coordination and motor skills.
Buy Toys That Enhance Creativity
Pre-schoolers love playing with paints, crayons and washable markers. These are not only fun but also encourage creativity by helping them explore different art mediums and experiment with colours.
Go With Toys That Promote Imagination
There are a bunch of girls’ toys online that promote imaginative play such as puppets, doctor kit, kitchen sets, dress-up toys, construction sets and so much more. These toys also encourage social interaction with other children, siblings and even parents.
Toys That Improve Problem-Solving Skills
Toddlers love learning and exploring new things which makes toys that promote problem solving and exploration perfect for your child. You can select from kinetic sand, building blocks, craft supplies, puzzles and more.
Pick the Toys That Keep Them Active and Interested
Kids often get bored with toys, even if they are new. Therefore, opt for toys that can keep them interested at different developmental stages. A toy vehicle, cash register or a musical instrument perhaps. Furthermore, it is also essential that you pick toys which encourage your child to be active.
If you want to enhance their physical activity, go for sporting equipment like a basketball, tricycles or even a basic hula hoop.
This is the age when children can develop effective skills and learn diversity, that will help them overcome gender- stereotyping in the future. So choose their toys wisely, and you won’t be disappointed.
This is a guest post.
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