What kind of a gift should you buy for a child? Socks? Underwear? The child's answer to that question would probably be a resounding, "No!" Some children do, of course, like to receive socks and underwear. Most commonly, however, when you think of buying a child's gift you probably lean more toward the purchase of a toy. There are traditional toys, New Age toys, and everything in between. In reality, it isn't uncommon for a child have more fun with the box a large toy came in than with the toy itself – at least for a while. That’s tradition at its finest!
Here, we are going to take a look at some traditional toys and why your child needs them in their life. Digital toys may be plentiful and fun – some can even be considered educational – but there's nothing like a good old-fashioned toy to stimulate a child's imagination.
WE ARE LIVING IN A DIGITAL WORLD
Along with much appreciated advancements in technology have come the development of a plethora of digital games. These can range from hidden object or puzzle games all the way to RPG (role playing games) – and everything in between. While they can be fun and entertaining, not much is left to the imagination. It's all right there before you. Some say that these games can help stimulate certain senses and develop certain skills. But traditional toys – at least when your child is younger and still in the major stages of development – might be a better fit.
In the minds of many, toys considered traditional (i.e., physical toys) have more benefits than do electronic toys. Old-school, old-fashioned, or traditional toys are categorized in the following manners:
- Encourage physical activity – Active play is not particularly encouraged by media-based games and other New Age toys. Health problems go hand-in-hand with sedentary lifestyles, which are encouraged by most video games. Gross motor abilities are better developed and strengthened through the use of toys which require physical activity. Think jump ropes, games involving balls, tricycles and bicycles, big toy cars, pull/push toys, etc.
- Promote language and conceptual learning – Social skills improve, and problem-solving abilities strengthen through the use of these games and activities. Your child's language will develop, and their vocabulary will increase if you read books together, as an example. Card games like Go Fish and board games such as checkers and Chutes and Ladders are extremely helpful here.
- Foster creativity – As long as a child does not fear being criticized, they will be allowed to express themselves with freedom through activities that foster creativity. Think painting and drawing, as examples. Here's what you'll need for these activities: modeling clay, watercolor paints, paint brushes, colored pencils, child safe scissors, various sized paper, etc.
- Stimulate imagination – These are simple toys that encourage greater imagination and give kids more freedom. When they use these toys, they can create their own stories and worlds. Pretend and symbolic play is encouraged here. Think costumes, action figures, kitchen sets w/accessories, dolls, toy planes and cars, etc.
- Strengthen fine motor skills – Wrist flexibility, finger dexterity, etc. are developed through toys that encourage the use of fine motor skills. Children must manipulate, hold, and grasp these objects. Think cutting shapes, putting puzzles together, building block structures, etc.
KIDPOWERED BELIEVES IN THE BENEFIT OF TRADITIONAL TOYS
Both traditional and some nontraditional toys can assist with a child's physical and mental development. As children get older, the more detailed and interactive a toy is, the better. Whether you go with toys that are considered traditional by many or play items that lean more toward New Age, the important thing is that you challenge a child continually and play with them whenever possible.
KidPowered has a wide selection of detail-oriented toys that focus on various themes found in everyday life. These toys will keep children engaged for hours and encourage imagination, fine motor skills, problem-solving, and more.