Choose Toddler Toys that Stimulate and Educate

By: Florence Jones

Toddlers are hyperactive and curious by default, and itís a normal adultís impulse to let them loose in a world filled with new things and experiences. Itís your job to guide your childís development, though, especially during the years when cognitive functions are just revving up. There are plenty of opportunities to introduce your child to exciting sights, sounds, smells, and tactile sensations, but since most of the waking hours are spent on a playroom or on a crib, toys are your best means of educating the fickle mind. In case youíve just forgotten how toys were sentimental parts of your childhood, dig up your old photos and see yourself in glorious sepia tint, holding a matching shapes ball or alphabet blocks as trophies of accomplishments.

Classic versus Techy Toys: Safety Still Comes First

Newer toys are more sophisticated compared to previous models, and some toys have chips and electronic devices embedded in them to maximize the experience. The classics never lose their charm, though, and most are usually rebranded with new cartoon characters or designs to tickle the fancy with whatís currently popular. The rules of choosing toddler toys still apply, though. Safety is your first priority, and you have to weed out toys with safety or choking hazards. Note that even varieties considered as age-appropriate may contain small or loose parts, either as factory defects or as part of the specifications; fidget with each piece thoroughly before you consider purchasing the package.

Keep Your Childís Toy Box Assortments Diverse

Some toys are mere distractions, while others have educational value. Your childís toy box should contain enough of both varieties. Stuffed toys and dolls come in handy when you want to appease boredom, while educational toys like puzzles encourage your child to work on developing skills during activity hours. Use the age-appropriate labels as your guide when choosing assortments. These are usually standardized so youíre childís age and maturity is covered for, but itís up to you to determine if the toy is too simple or difficult to play with. Puzzle toys, for example, vary in number and complexity of pieces, and a 15-piece puzzle of complicated shapes may not match your toddlerís capabilities. Consider your childís current assortment of toys, and choose varieties more complicated than the ones completed with ease and familiarity.

Puzzle Toys should be Doable and Durable

Toddler puzzles should be chunky and colorful, in designs which easily snap into place with enough effort. Wooden puzzles are ideal because these are more durable; toddlers have a knack for chewing on everything they can get their hands onto. Youíll have to guide your child along if the puzzle becomes too frustrating, or you can bring out a simpler toy and motivate him with a quick accomplishment.

Sort all toys in separate boxes, and let your child choose the ones he wants to play with. If youíre finicky enough, keep track of his progress and note it the next time you shop for new toys, maybe in the next few months or during the holidays. You can view if youíre looking for whimsical, colorful, child-friendly toys for your tot, and there should also be plenty of new arrivals coming in at stores as well. Make the most of your childís developing years with toys that stimulate and educate. Consider these as tools that give him the advantage in preschool and kindergarten.

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Check out and shop for puzzle toys, dolls, games, and bobble art bags. The assortments should be enough to keep your childís fickle fancies at bay, at least for the meantime.

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