Sunday, June 6, 2010

Just a thought......

Choosing "good" toys for children can be really difficult. When you walk into a toy store you are usually bombarded with all kinds of options and it can be tough to decide what type of toy your child will enjoy the most. Here are the five most important factors that I take into consideration when trying to decide what to purchase. (1) Does the toy have sensory appeal? This means I look at elements such as textures, sounds, lights, colours, and movement. These are things that can make a toy appealing to a young child. (2) How easy is the toy to operate? Some toys look like a lot of fun, but if they are to difficult for your child to turn off/on it can become frustrating for child. I like to find toys that will pose a challenge for a child, but not ones that will be to difficult to make play fun. (3) Can the toy be used in a variety of ways? I try to find toys that encourage open-ended play. This means that there is no right or wrong way to use the toy. Toys that can be used in many different ways are the ones that tend to keep a child's interest for the longest period of time. (4) What is the toy's potential for interaction? Great toys are the ones that really engage a child or keeps them interested for a long period of time. Although it's nice to find a toy that a child can use independently it's even more important that a toy that can be used to promote social interactions. Whenever possible it's good to find a toy that will encourage social engagement because children learn the most when they are able to play with other people. (5) Will a toy encourage exploration? It's always nice to find a toy that encourages creativity, uniqueness, and making choices.

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