How the Right Toys Can Help Parents Interact with Their Children
There is no shortage of toys parents can buy for their children. But there is a shortage of quality toys that encourage imaginative and interactive play. At Hotaling Imports, we focus on providing retailers with the kinds of toys that can be passed down to the next generation, because they’ll still be meaningful many years from now. Additionally, the right toys can encourage parents to interact with their children.
Why Children Play
Play is the child’s work. Children learn and grow through playing. Even if you can’t visibly see that they’re learning something, little ones get to know how the world works every day during playtime. Whether they set up make-believe games or their own petting zoo, play teaches them coordination and social skills. It also helps their language development and improves their memory.
Certain types of games can teach children how to solve problems and work together with others as a team. For other games, they must be quick thinkers or fast runners. If left alone, children will come up with a variety of incredible games they can play fostering a broad set of skills. But even when kids are supervised by adults, there is always room for letting them come up with their own games or encouraging interactive play with developmentally appropriate toys.
The Role of Toys
There is a time and a place for electronics in your child’s life. Since they’re growing up in the 21st century, it naturally means that they’ll be watching TV, playing games on a tablet, and browsing the Internet on a cell phone. But the need for playtime is still there. It’s important that parents take that responsibility seriously and encourage children to get away from the screen for a significant portion of the day to developer other skills.
If your child didn’t have any toys, they’d use other things as props in their games. Toys aren’t required for playtime, but they make it easier for your child to immerse themselves in a new world. Whether it’s dress-up clothes for playing pretend royalty or a crocket game to play an interactive game outside, toys can encourage active playtime away from the screen.
The Importance of Parent Interaction
Children want to play with other children of similar ages, and that’s fine. But it’s also a good idea for parents to play with their children, because it teaches the little ones different things. Parents play differently, and their games will be more structured. More importantly, they’ll provide another perspective for a young child and offer a new way of looking at the game.
One thing parents aren’t great at is imaginative play. Your child’s imagination is much better developed, because their thoughts aren’t limited by the beliefs they hold about the world. Fortunately, toys can help parents and children play together in a way that’s meaningful for both of them.
Which Toys to Choose
There is no lack of selection when it comes to purchasing toys. Unfortunately, most toys available in stores resemble the little computers you’re trying so hard to pry your child from. If the toy doesn’t talk, walk, sing, dance, or make noise on its own, it often doesn’t make it to the list of popular toys. The lack of electronic interaction also means that your child won’t notice the toy on a commercial or in the store and add it to their birthday wish list. Truthfully, the toys that can do the least on their own usually bring the greatest joy to little hands.
Toys that don’t use batteries rely on your child’s imagination to use them. They’re more versatile and can be used in different kind of games. Wooden blocks are a great example, because you can stack them as high as you can, build an elaborate castle, use them to count, build a labyrinth, and do any number of other things with them. You can sort them by size, shape, and color, too.
Other great options for toys are the ones that encourage outdoor play. For example, a ball that can be kicked back and forth outside can give your child hours of quality playtime. There are an infinite number of games you can play with a ball, and your child will find new games you have never thought of.
The bottom line is, good toys should be made with quality materials, but they should be simple and basic. These are the kinds of toys that make the best childhood memories, because they keep kids happily immersed for hours in a world of their own choosing.