Before choosing the first and cutest educational toy you set your sights on, take a step back. Not all educational toys are made the same nor do they offer the same kind of education. Many first-time parents seem to think that all educational toys have the same purpose and offer the same benefits for their growing child.
There are actually several important factors worth considering and learning about how to choose educational toys is better than choosing one at random. This will ensure that you purchase a toy that your baby or toddler cannot only learn from but also enjoy.
Tips on How to Choose Educational Toys
Here are some tips every parent should consider when shopping for an educational toy.
Tip 1: Remember low tech
Everything has gone digital today and so have educational toys. Although technologically advanced educational toys are fun and entertaining, sometimes they aren’t the best. Many children who grow up facing a screen from a young age forget about their own creativity and often do not think independently. Basic building blocks and shape mailboxes are still very popular today because the basic toys are still considered as some of the best and most affordable options as well.
Tip 2: Age-versatile toys
It is a waste to buy a dozen educational toys that your baby will eventually grow bored with in time. Some toys may seem like an expensive investment at first, but when babies grow into toddlers, and they still choose that old educational toy you bought years ago it is all worth it.
There are very few toys that can cater to both young toddlers and older ones, but once you find one that can entertain a wide age range, it is worth considering as it can provide years of educational fun for your child.
Tip 3: Choose toys that spark the use of imagination
Toys that allow children to use their imaginations are great choices. This can lead to extended play time because there are no limits to a child’s imagination.
Not only will these toys provide a lot of learning and fun but it also gives toddlers a chance to use their creativity. Such things like building blocks are a timeless classic because they have proven to spark the imagination and creativity of children all around the world.
Tip 4: Consider games that require playmates
Introducing your child to other children may be a bit hard at first, especially when they are used to being the only child at home. Their social skills aren’t well-developed, but toys that require playmates and interactive play will help toddlers learn how to play with others.
These toys are perfect for children who are about to enter formal education. This way they will already have the experience of sharing and playing with other kids. Adjusting to a classroom will be easier when they are used to being around other kids their age.
Tip 5: Set your expectations
No matter what a toy box may claim about speeding up a child’s development, take those claims with a grain of salt. Toys do help children develop certain useful skills, but they cannot fast-track their development. A child is ready to grow and learn at their own pace.
Do not expect an infant to start crawling after 3 months just because a toy promises that their motor skills will be enhanced. Be realistic and just enjoy the time your child spends growing up and learning from their experiences.
Tip 6: Choose age-appropriate toys
When debating how to choose educational toys, the age of your baby should always be considered. The point of an educational toy is to challenge their minds and bodies without being too challenging. When a toddler feels like they cannot solve a problem because of its complexity, they are more likely to feel frustrated and give up.
Instead, choose puzzles and other toys that are made for the level of thinking for a certain age. You want to instill that playtime is fun and educational, not a test of patience.
It is a challenge to choose the perfect educational toy for a child. There are so many choices that offer different benefits, but when it comes down to it, choose a toy your child will most likely enjoy. It is useless to pay for an expensive toy that will just gather dust in a corner because your toddler prefers a different toy.