Toy Talk

                                                                                       Play is the “work” of childhood. Good toys help kids learn new skills and grow developmentally.

Here are a few pointers to keep in mind while buying a toy for your child.

Age Recommendation:

Most toys have the age group it is intended for printed on the packing. Use this as a broad guideline, and then decide if your child has the ability or skills to play with it.

Parts:

Please check if the toy you are buying has many parts. Toddlers tend to put almost everything in their mouths and small parts can cause a choking hazard.

Educational Value:

While toys and playtime bring enjoyment, they should also help your child practice and refine his/her motor skills or developmental skills. For example if your 3 year old is learning numbers in school, get him number blocks that need to be stacked together, or an abacus.

Don’t promote gender bias:

Don’t encourage the popular stereotype that dolls are for girls and legos are for boys. Observe what they are drawn towards and encourage them to play with those.

Material

Be extremely careful that you buy toys made with good quality material. Cheap toys made with hazardous chemicals (lead based paint) can cause major health hazards like poisoning and asphyxiation.

Violence:

With children being exposed to a variety of media, they do imbibe a lot of unwanted and unnecessary attributes, violence being one. Try not to buy them toys that encourage violent behavior or aggression among small children.

Local Flavor:

Try and promote toys with local Flavor. Toys that are made locally and help local artisans are always a good choice. Introduce your children to the toys of your childhood.

Key Words: Toys, educational value, choosing a toy,age appropriate toys, gender neutral toys                                                                                                           

                                                                                                          – Priyadarshini Balasubramaniam

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