How to choose educational toys for children
Wondering how to choose educational toys for childen? Use imagination!
A box can be an educational toy because it allows
a child to use his imagination and ingenuity.
Educational toys tap a child’s creative ability. Each child has his own interests, which should be fostered and will be if you introduce him to educational toys that teach while also providing fun and pleasure. How to choose educational toys for your children is not a brain-teaser. It’s easy.
Choosing toys: the basics
Get your infant some textured, bright colored toys that are non-breakable, with no sharp edges that could scratch or cut him. Avoid any small items that the child could choke on. Babies put everything in their mouths because this is part of the learning process. A baby likes to look at a toy as well as touching it with his hands and mouth.
Stacking toys, cups, nested boxes, rattles and
mobiles are wonderful manipulative toys that teach your child many things. Even baby's very first toys can teach about science, culture or religion. When your baby
starts to crawl provide him with cuddly toys and cloth picture books. When the
baby begins to walk introduce him to push or pull toys and balls. Babies also
enjoy music-making toys and will be dancing and singing along before you know
How children play
When infants play, they employ their sense (seeing, smelling, hearing, tasting and touching) and this is how they learn. When babies learn to focus on objects with their eyes this strengthens their eyes. Babies love hearing nursery rhymes so say or sing them to your child.
Toddlers are active. They run, jump and climb. They also like doing things with their hands so you should provide toys - like toy farm animals - that the child can manipulate with his hands. They also enjoy emulating the adults so play dress up with them. Introduce toddlers to crayons, chalk, paint and play doh but, of course, supervise them because they still put things into their mouths that they shouldn’t. Use non-toxic products. Talk to your young one; a lot. This is how he learns to communicate.
Music is very important. It helps the child develop new pathways in his brain as well as having a soothing effect on the child. Buy your child toy musical instruments and later on buy the real thing. Music primes the brain and spatial pathways are turned on, which improves spatial skills.
Those children who learn how to play musical instruments can solve problems and do math better than those who haven’t had exposure to music. Sing to your baby. Play music in the background. Play a musical instrument in front of your child. Toddlers love banging on a tambourine or shaking maracas or playing a toy piano.
Four- and five-year-olds are old enough to start taking music lessons. Exposure to music helps a child become more creative and coordinated and results in a well-round individual.
Play make-pretend using dramatic play props with your young children. Toss and bounce balls with them. Create an obstacle course in your house (it’s probably already there) and navigate it with your child. Play hide and seek. When a child gets older they love tricycles and hobby horses, wagons and other larger toys that they can ride on or push and pull.
Make sure that your young child has some exposure to other children his age because this is the best educational tool of all. He will learn how to interact appropriately and share with others.
When your child gets older he still has needs. Tweens should be encouraged to paint, draw, write, sculpt, sing, mold or do anything that helps them express themselves non-verbally. A supply of art materials encourages creativity. This is a time in their life when they may not be very good at articulating their feelings so give them an outlet. Buy them paints, an easel or a diary.
Any “toy” that encourages their imagination and allows it to flourish as well as helps develop their mind is an ideal educational toy. A child who is this age is capable of spending longer periods of time reading, putting together a puzzle, or daydreaming.