🍼 Which Developmental Toys Are Best?
As baby gets older you worry if he's on track for his development, is he learning new things fast enough, and is that behavior normal for his age? Are you being a good parent? Are you spending enough time teaching him new things? Reading to him? On top of all that you may also still be sleep-deprived, hormonal and harried.
It's a big responsibility.
The Purpose of Toys
Toys do a double duty, not only do they keep baby occupied doing his baby work of learning about himself and the world around him, they also give mom and dad a few minutes to do their mom and dad things (work, cleaning, meal prep, laundry, you know....)
A Word About Safety
Falls are the most common type of injury resulting from ride-on toys such as scooters or bikes. Choking on non-food items is the most common fatal injury.
Therefore, make sure the toy you choose is appropriate for your child's age. Beware of small objects that can come loose and if you have older children in the house be sure their toys, which often have choking hazards for younger children, are kept out of reach.
A Few Guidelines
Simple Toys Make the Best Toys
Mom carefully unpacks the toy (which oftentimes is itself a feat in engineering), hands it to the baby, everyone can't wait to see her sheer delight.....and she crawls right over to the big box it came in and plays with that for the rest of the afternoon.
Simple toys which allow the child to use their imagination, spark creativity and learning far more than those toys with one set, specific, way to play with it.
You will also find that the child comes back to that toy again and again because it has versatility. A set of blocks can be an obstacle course for cars one day, something to build a tower out of the next day and a projectile to try to make a "basket" the next.
Limit the Electronics
The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests children under the age of 2 have no screen time while children above that age have only an hour or two.
We all know this is very difficult. There are certainly times when a screen is the only way to get through a long flight or car trip. Use electronic toys judiciously, and always have a more simple engaging toy at the ready.
Certainly, don't beat yourself up if little Susie had a bit of extra screen time because mommy didn't want to lose her mind on that trans-Atlantic flight. Just try to keep the boob-tube and other mind-numbing electronics to a bare minimum (and that applies to you too, parents 😉.)
Just Because a Toy Says It's Educational Doesn't Mean it Is
More is Not Always Better
Store bought is Not Always Better
30 Fun And Educational Baby Toys You Can DIY In Your Spare Time
312 DIY Baby Toys - Pinterest
40+ DIY Toys for Babies
A Few Toy Suggestions to Get You Started:
Macik Newborn Rattle Toy
Manhattan Toy Winkel Rattle and Sensory Teether
Sassy Developmental Bumpy Ball
DIY Sensory Play Bag for Babies
Soft Plastic Kids Play Balls
Glamore Wooden Shape Sorter
The First Years Stack Up Cups
Premium Bead Maze Activity Cube for Baby, Toddler
Play-Doh Modeling Compound
Rolimate Wooden Educational Preschool Shape Color Recognition Geometric Board
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom
Let's Not Forget a Toy for Mommy!
Remember to take care of yourself, hire a babysitter, enjoy a long lunch with your friends, go for a massage or just a long quiet walk by yourself. Find something that helps you de-stress and unwind it is one of the best things you can do for your child(ren), because as they say, "If Mommy ain't happy then nobody's happy!"
In Peace, Love and Health ~T
Image Credits:(searched using Google "Labeled for reuse with modification" filter.)
1.Toy Age-Labeling: An Overview for Pediatricians of How Toys Receive Their Age Safety and Developmental DesignationsPediatrics July 2016, VOLUME 138 / ISSUE 1
2.Choosing the Right Toys for the Right Age
3.30 Fun And Educational Baby Toys You Can DIY In Your Spare Time