If you’re a parent, then you know how important it is to find the right toys for your kids. As they grow up and learn about themselves and the world around them through play, toys play a vital role during their development. That’s why selecting healthy, educational, and fun toys is such an important task. Toys can help foster creativity and problem-solving skills; improve motor skills; teach cause and effect; encourage pretend play; stimulate language development; and instill confidence in little ones as they make discoveries all on their own. Here are some simple tips that will help guide your toy purchases from now on:
Toys That Match Your Child’s Interest
Toys that work with your child’s interests are always the best toys to buy. Look for age-appropriate gifts that relate to your child’s current activities and favorite things, such as what you see them play with at home or at daycare. Toys like teddy bears, tea sets, figurines, play kitchens, and anything that encourages creative play are always a good bet. Look for a fun activity to make the kid feel involved. You can get your child to come up with teddy bear names for his teddy bears or create a tea party with her toys when you get them toys. Scour toy stores for themed sales around holidays like Christmas and back-to-school time, as this is a great opportunity to get a deal on cool themed toys your kids will love!
Toys With a Proven Track Record
Another good tip to follow is to buy toys that have proven themselves in the marketplace of playtime favorites. For example, it’s hard to go wrong with classic building sets like LEGO or wooden train sets. Some toy manufacturers are more respected than others for high-quality products, so always do your research before buying. It would be tragic if your child was disappointed on Christmas morning! You want what’s best for your kids, right? If you happen across a great sale on a toy that has stellar reviews, then why not stock up? It never hurts to have some extra educational toys around just in case they’re needed.
Look out for Quality
Look for durable, quality toys that are made from heavy plastic or wood. Also, look for bright colors and fun characters on the labels which usually denote high value in a toy too. Try to avoid items with small parts because they can be choking hazards while anything designed for toddlers should be latex-free and lead-free because they put everything in their mouths. Toys that are built to last will provide years of enjoyment.
High-quality materials like wood, heavy plastic, or metal make for durable playthings that can be passed down from one sibling to the next. Look for bright colors and fun characters that your kids will love because these types of features usually add value to a toy too. In addition to durability, look for items made with safe materials. Anything with small parts should have choking hazard warnings while anything designed for toddlers should be latex-free and lead-free because they tend to put everything in their mouths!
Take Age and Development into Consideration
It’s important to choose age-appropriate toys so if you have a baby who’s not quite ready to play with a toy phone, opt for something like an early-learning toy instead. When your child becomes a toddler, look for toys that help them learn cause and effect such as blocks or stacking cups while preschoolers can begin to master fine motor skills through play with simple puzzles and coloring books. Around the age of four, little ones can become fascinated by imaginative playthings like dolls and tea sets, so this is also when they’re starting to develop social and language skills too. This is also the time that they start to attend preschool. The more you know about what your child likes and dislikes, then the better choices you will be able to make in the toy store when buying toys for them!
An easy way to save some extra money is by stopping yourself before you overspend at the toy store. If you give in to every whim of your kids when buying toys, then they will undoubtedly have a room full of junk that means nothing to them. Instead, start shopping for new toys on sale so you’re only buying the things that they truly want and need instead of picking up whatever’s cheapest just because it’s available. There are plenty of inexpensive ways to keep kids entertained and happy!
Keep in mind that the best gifts are those that spark imagination through pretend play which is why dress-up clothes are some of the best toys you can find. For kids under 3 years old, finding toys to strengthen motor skills is also key in helping them develop fine and gross motor skills. The more your child reads at home the better their vocabulary will become over time. When buying toys for children, it’s always best to go off of what you know about them already which includes their interests outside of what they already have too. Maintaining a balance between quality materials that are durable, colorful, and safe will help you get plenty of playtime out of any item you purchase throughout the year!