All you need to do in order to achieve this as the parent or guardian is to choose the right toys for your kids because your kid’s eyes light up at the sight of toys and that is why today we are going to be discussing about how toys make kids smarter.
It seems that his/her attraction for toys is instinctive. Maybe this is because toys fulfill his needs for using his imagination and his need to explore, pretend, and share.
Meanwhile, Toys are not only fun, they can also be valuable tools to make your kid smart and they prepare him for skills needed to be an adult.
The best toy for your kid is the one that he chooses therefore sometimes it is recommended to allow your kids make their selections at the store and it can be as simple as a cardboard box or pots and pans.
When he/she enjoys a toy, it provides him or her the greatest learning experience. Your kid is a natural learner and anything that interests him or her will teach him something.
Also, the more variety of toys he or she has, the happier he or she is, and the more diverse his or her learning experience will become. He/She may not have access to all the toys he/she likes, so some you have to provide some of them yourself.
Below are some of the guidelines to choosing the toys that will make your kid smarter:
1. Choose toys that are developmentally appropriate for your child’s age
if it is too advanced for him, he or she might get frustrated with how difficult it is to play, and he or she will abandon it. Worse, it may even injure him or her. If the toy is for a younger age, he will find it boring.
2. Choose toys that are appropriate to your child’s gender
You need to observe your child to determine his likes, interests, his skills level, his favorite characters, etc. to know what toy he will enjoy.
3. Choose toys that require imagination
These are open-ended toys that leave playing to the imagination. Avoid toys that can only be played in only one or a few ways.
Toys that run on your kid’s imagination are better than those that run on AA batteries. For example, a Tiger toy whose limbs your kid can manipulate endless ways is better than a Tiger toy that can only somersault.
Playing toys by making believe enables your child to test his idea about the world and develops his creativity.
Research has also shown that this also develops language and lengthens your kid’s attention span.
4. Choose toys that allow your child to do something to them
Things like snapping them together or shaping them because they improve your kid’s spatial intelligence and depth of perception. He or she also gets to learns about shapes, colors and sizes.
5. Give your kid a variety of toys where he can learn a variety of skills
The Teachers Resisting Unhealty Children’s Entertainment group lists the benefits of particular types of toys:
- Toys that encourage dramatic play like blocks, toy vehicles, toy animals, puppets, and props to recreate real life such as a store help your kid “work out his own ideas about the world.”
- Toys that encourage manipulative play like construction sets, puzzles, and toys with interlocking pieces help your kid develop small muscle control and hand-eye coordination.
- Creative arts toys like blank pieces of paper, paints, scissors, glue, and clay encourage self-expression and the use of symbols, which are vital skills for problem-solving and literacy.
- Toys that encourage physical activity like bikes, jump ropes, balls let your child work off energy and build strength and coordination.
- Strategy games like card games, dominoes, chess and checkers teach your child about taking turns, planning, following rules and cooperating with teammates or opponents.
- TRUCE discourages violent toys and those related to media entertainment designed for older audiences.
6. When you give your chosen toy to your child, don’t just hand it to him/her and then shoo him/her off to play
Play with your child, explain how the toy works and what’s fun about it. Playing with your kid makes him feel loved, and this enhances his learning. Also, observe if he really gets interested. If not, the toy may be too advanced for him. Keep it until he or she is ready for it.
7. Introduce new toys one or two at a time
Too many choices overwhelm your kid, especially if he or she is an infant.
You kid is more likely to make the most out of every toy and be comfortable with its familiarity if you slowly add new toys to his collection.
8. Make sure the toy is safe
This is especially true for your infant or very young kid. Make sure, for example, that your baby’s rattle doesn’t have holes that trap his fingers. Kids love to put toys in their mouth (as well as other holes in their body), so avoid toys that your kid can swallow and choke on. For your older child, check if toys that are designed to take his weight are sturdy and have no mechanical defects.
9. Store toys in such a way that your kid will be stimulated to play with them
Things like arranging them into little scenes or other creative arrangement. Don’t just dump everything into a toy box where your kid doesn’t even remember what is in there.
Here are some Nice and Cheap Educational Toys that can Make your Kids Smarter: