Educational toys can do wonders for your kids’ development; they help build skills and encourage interest in fields such as math, science, construction and engineering, and many more. However, getting the benefits isn’t as simple as buying loads of playthings. Here are a few tips to make the best out of your child’s toy collection.
Start a Rotation
Even though your child might have a room full of toys, they tend to play with only a few of them. If this happens, try bringing the rest of the toys out of the room and into three to four different boxes. Bring in a new box every week or two to get the benefit of fewer toys at a time and a sense of getting “new” toys every once in a while.
The best toys are the ones that make children think about what to do with them – it nurtures their imagination and creativity. Try playthings that can be customised and come in variety of colours, shapes, and different ways to use.
Independent learning and exploring is important, but parent involvement can truly make a big difference in establishing an effective learning environment. “Many parents seem to purchase toys and learning materials with the aim that children will play with them and learn, but also in order to keep the child occupied, so they can have time for themselves to do other things,” said Nicola Yelland, Professor of Education at Victoria University. “While this might be the case with good toys, it is also apparent that this play time represents a significant opportunity to explore and talk to your child so that they are scaffolded in their explorations and provided with model language they can use and extend in other settings.”