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Toys. The very word sparks excitement in young people everywhere.
Toys capture the attention of children of all ages.
There are countless varieties of toys out on the market.
Children love to discover and explore the world around them. They learn best when they are given opportunities to explore through hands-on experiences.
So how can we best facilitate these kinds of quality experiences while using the timeless idea of toys?
The answer is quite simple…Educational toys! Click here to see Unique and Creative Building Blocks for Kids!
Make Learning Fun
Educational toys make learning fun!
Children’s little minds are constantly going– making connections and figuring out how things work.
This is where educational toys fit in, toys that are designed to inspire young minds as they seek to make sense of the world they live in.
Children stretch their minds and think in new ways every day as they are given opportunities to interact with things that create new paths in their brains, connect them to the world around them, and have fun doing it!
Specific toys can connect children to developmentally appropriate activities that stimulate learning in each one of them individually.
Many of these toys are specifically created with an educational purpose in mind.
As a teacher, I had many opportunities to provide my students with growing experiences through fun activities; including the use of things like lincoln logs, magnetic alphabet letters and plastic shapes.
The smiles that frequented their faces was rewarding as they spent time learning with exciting resources and had a blast doing it!
Discover and Explore
Our world is full of bright and colorful things and children want to explore every part of it.
Babies are enthralled with each piece of dirt and discarded crumb of food found on the floor; they will pick up just about anything and thoroughly inspect it.
My infant daughter is right in the middle of this stage, everything she sees catches her attention.
As she explores, she asks the same question about a myriad of different things: “what’s that?”
Her curiosity about anything and everything is a great reminder of the things we can learn if we just ask!
She is always ready and willing to learn, opening the door of opportunity for me and others around her to figuratively fill her learning cup.
Children are very similar in their desire to discover and understand everything they see.
They enjoy pushing, pulling, assembling, disassembling, experimenting, etc.
Toys are an engaging way to allow children the freedom of their own discovery and growth while using helpful resources and tools.
There were many times as a teacher I saw my students’ eyes glow with excitement as they figured something out and hurried to share with me and their classmates.
These are the moments of success we want them to have every day, building on their own exploration of their world.
We learn best by asking questions and then seeking out answers, a pattern we continue to follow throughout adulthood.
Why not equip our kids with this powerful and effective strategy for learning?
Learning has a much longer and more lasting effect when we are an integral part of the discovery.
Children love to use their imagination to create.
They can take just about anything and create a whole new world with it.
Toys help encourage creativity as they give children new tools of discovery that open their minds to different ideas and play.
Each child has a unique personality that is developed through experience and exposure to a large variety of things.
Children can learn how to problem solve as they imagine and create their own scenarios; build things up, knock them down, and manipulate toys and items.
They are presented with various obstacles that they get to think through and overcome. It’s incredible to see the vast amount of creativity that can come from one or two items and a group of creative children!
A fun activity I previously did with my students included using shapes to build anything they could think of.
The resulting pictures were as varied and diverse as the classroom of children.
We always had a large range of things from monsters to flowers to bicycles.
Each child used their own creativity and the life experiences they had to visualize and then make their object using basic shapes.
There are countless examples of children using their own “creative juices” to produce something new.
Positive Interaction with Others
Having positive, meaningful interactions with others is a life skill we seek to teach children from a very young age.
They will come into contact with many different types of people as they go through life and we want them to be prepared to be successful in these interactions!
We use a large variety of methods to teach this, with toys being among the more prominent and natural among young people.
The use of toys can encourage positive interaction with peers as children learn to share, help others, and work together with other children as they delve into fun and engaging toy-related activities.
Certain toys/activities require children to coordinate their actions and subsequently encourage a working together mindset.
Young minds are constantly being cultivated through these relationships and experiences.
I have noticed among previous students in my class the students who appeared to have had experience interacting and sharing with others and those who may have had less exposure to these types of experiences.
There was one 6-year-old girl who would always be watching out for others.
She noticed when a child wasn’t playing and would invite them to join her. If she had a toy or resource someone else wanted she would instantly share it with them.
She had been taught how and given opportunities to have positive interactions. The goal is to give EVERY child as many positive interactions as we can.
Make Memories and Enjoy the Journey!
Memories are made when learning and fun blend together to create a sequence of events that expand our horizons, open new doors, and push us to become a better version of ourselves.
The sky is the limit when children are given time to discover, explore, and create using their imaginations hand-in-hand with appealing and entertaining toys that educate and motivate all along the way.
Support the children in your life by making learning fun, leading them to discover and explore, encouraging creativity, and facilitating positive interaction with others.
There are so many new things to learn and do every day.
Let’s make today count!
What are other ways you have found that children can benefit from toys? Please share your comments and thoughts below!
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