The Best Educational Wooden Toys for Kids

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Lego vs Spielgaben

Comparison between Lego and Spielgaben

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Lego vs Spielgaben

Almost any parent or educator would agree that the very best way for young children to learn is through play and hands-on experiences. Through play, children have the opportunity to create their own understandings, strengthen their fine and gross motor skills, and establish oral language richness. They have fun while they are “learning” all of these things, and they get to learn about them at their own pace without pressure. All of these qualities are the building blocks for later success in school and beyond. 

We live in an age however, where digital toys and devices seem to be taking over our culture. While there are some excellent digital “toys” available for children, they are no substitute for actual physical toys where children can explore with all their senses, and learn through their own experiences as opposed to a pre-determined set of exercises. Although children are drawn to technology, it is no substitute for play based learning.

There are excellent toys that are available for children that offer them traditional hands-on play experiences and two of the best are the Spielgaben and Legos. Both of these toys are excellent for developing all the skills mentioned above (fine and gross motor, oral language) as well as allowing for the exploration that is so important for brain development. Legos are a building and construction toy, and the Spielgaben is a fun educational tool. 

Both Legos and the Spielgaben allow children to explore principles of math, geometry, building and spatial awareness. They encourage problem solving and imaginative play. While both of these are excellent toys for children of all ages, there are some pros and cons to each. 

LEGO

Legos are a set of plastic interlocking building bricks that come in varying sizes and colors. They can be connected and assembled in an almost endless variety of ways, and there are auxiliary pieces like gears, figures and decorative and functional pieces to enhance the building experience. 

There are also theme based sets which are available that allow children to build items from certain times and eras, or from books, movies, and shows. These sets may be used alone, or in conjunction with the base set. Additionally, there are kits available which are more sophisticated that allow children to build things like famous buildings or vehicles. These sets involve less free play.

What Lego is Good At

  • The Lego system provides children with great opportunities for imaginative play. If your child can imagine it, they can build it. They can create structures and then explore possibilities like adding different parts, or taking parts away. With the purchase of additional sets, the possibilities grow, as the sets can be combined and used together.
  • Legos are excellent for developing fine motor skills. There is a great deal of dexterity involved in putting the pieces together and taking them apart.
  • Legos embrace the power of story. Children can build whole worlds with their blocks and act out stories using the figures. Using the add on sets, they can create worlds in different settings, like space, medieval times, and the wild west.
  • Lego is an excellent tool for developing spatial awareness and building principles. It allows children to experiment with 3D visualization and manipulation. These are important skills for later success in math, particularly in geometry.
  • Legos appeal to children of all ages. Since they are such an open ended toy, children can play with it in new and different ways as they grow and develop new understandings of the world around them.

 Drawbacks of Legos

Although Legos are a fantastic hands-on toy for children of all ages, there are some drawbacks.

  • One of the drawbacks of the Lego system is that the company is always creating new sets. While this may sound like a benefit at first, it can get very expensive. The company markets new products every year and parents are continually buying new sets.
  • While Legos are fantastic toys for children in terms of developing building construction skills, there are not a lot of other educational benefits that children glean from playing with the toy. They are toys, and not educational tools.
  • Legos are made from 100% plastic, which has been proven to contain harmful chemicals. Additionally, when plastic toys break, they shatter into small and dangerous pieces.
  • Being made of plastic, Legos make a bigger impact on the environment during production than wooden toys do. Plastic manufacturing entails vast resources, and are not biodegradable.
  • Legos can be difficult to store. They usually end up in a large container of some sort, and must be dumped out all at once for a child to find the exact piece they are looking for, among hundreds.

SPIELGABEN

Like Legos, the Spielgaben is a toy designed to allow children to create, build and design. It is a completely open-ended educational toy and learning tool where children are the creators of their own play based learning.

The Spielgaben is a set of wooden geometric pieces inspired by the toys of Friedrich Froebel, the inventor of the Kindergarten. The set contains points, lines, two and three dimensional solids, as well as curved and circular pieces.

Benefits of Spielgaben

  • Spielgaben only contains time test proven materials that support your child’s development.”
  • The Spielgaben was designed by an educator who had deep understanding of the way in which children learn best. Friedrich Froebel created the modern day kindergarten and understood that children learn best by hands-on exploration and free play exploration.
  • The Spielgaben offers benefits for children ages 3-12. Since the toy is so completely open ended, there is no expiration date on learning with it. As children develop new understanding, they will begin to use the toy in new ways.
  • There are many educational benefits to be reaped from the Spielgaben. First, children learn about design and building principles. They learn about how things fit together, and learn basics of geometry. There are many opportunities for sorting and counting, and many other beginning and more advanced math skills as well. In addition, there are activity sheets included in the set which offer suggestions for using the toy to teach skills such as time, fractions, and art principles
  • Inlcuded with the Spielgaben are accompanying Curriculum based learning resources which are based on child’s ages & competency level so parents can educate their children while playing.
  • The Spielgaben offers exceptional fine motor skill practice. Manual dexterity is an added benefit of picking up the pieces, and putting them together to form patterns, designs and structures.
  • The Spielgaben is made of all natural, environmentally sustainable materials. There are no toxins of any sort in the Spielgaben and it is made completely of biodegradable wood.
  • The Spielgaben is designed for ease of storage. The pieces are housed in three beautiful wooden trays, each with sections for the different parts which makes clean up a breeze. Children can sort the pieces back into their proper containers after using them, and the trays stack nicely on top of one another. This toy actually encourages children to be responsible for their things and to clean up after themselves. Sorting the parts back into their proper spots is actually part of the fun with the Spielgaben!
  • The Spielgaben is a complete set. In other words, there will never be anything else to buy. Unlike Legos, parents will not need to buy new sets year after year. This toy grows with your child, so they can use the same materials over and over again, but in different ways to learn increasingly difficult concepts as they mature.
  • The Spielgaben is beautiful! The wood is smooth and pleasing to the touch. The bright colors are vibrant and appealing.

Drawbacks of the Spielgaben

There are very few drawbacks to the Spielgaben. Although it can be more expensive than plastic manufactured toys, the Spielgaben will last for generations since it is made from wood, making it well worth the investment. 

Other drawbacks:

  • The smaller pieces may be a choking hazard for young children. The toy is designed for ages 3-12, but younger children will likely be drawn to the bring colors and smooth shapes. Young children should be supervised when using the toy due to the small size of some of the pieces.
  • The storage container is a bit heavy. The trays are designed with handles on the side so that children can lift and stack them more easily, but they can still be a bit heavy for younger children who may need some help with this part of cleanup.

 Both the Spielgaben and Legos are wonderful free-play toys for children that encourage creative thinking, problem solving and free play. Although they are both excellent choices for children, the Spielgaben offers several advantages over Legos, making it a solid investment in your child’s play and education. Legos are for play, and Spielgaben is for educational minded play. 

Being created by an educator who understood child development is a wonderful perk. You can feel comfortable knowing that you child is indeed learning while they are playing when using the Spielgaben. Additionally, it has many more possibilities for learning beyond building principles, ensuring that your children will use the toy for many years, and likely your grandchildren will as well! 

phyiscal toys vs digital toys

Why Are Physical Educational Toys Better for Young Children

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phyiscal toys vs digital toys

These days, it seems like everywhere you go you see people with some sort of digital device.  The trend is ever-growing, and taking root with children at an increasingly younger age.  In previous generations, children did not have many options for digital entertainment other than a very short window of Saturday morning cartoons, or an occasional evening show watched as a family.

Now, children have almost endless options for digital entertainment, with television comprising a very small portion of their “screen time” options.  Not only are televisions competing for our children’s attention, but also computers, video game systems, tablets and phones are available almost constantly for them to search the internet, watch videos, or play digital games.  What ever happened to physical educational toys for kids?

Children also seem to love digital entertainment. They have a natural propensity for understanding the ins and outs of software and gaming programs that adults are lacking.  Since they have been exposed to this sort of technology since birth, there is very little learning curve involved for them to master.

When you ask many children these days what their favorite game is, they answer with the name of a digital game.  When you ask them what their favorite toy is, a good portion of children will answer with the name of their video gaming system. 

Let’s face it.  We are a digital world.  But is all of this digital media really good for our children, and are digital games a substitute for physical educational toys for kids?  There are some digital games out there that are educational, so that is one positive, but can children learn the same things from digital games and toys that they can from toys that they can actually touch and hold?  The makers of these educational games often claim that children will learn more by using their toys, but are their claims really true?

The answer in a nutshell is no.  Although there is a growing number of educational games in the electronic sector, they can never replace the experience of a child holding an actual toy, exploring how it works, and making discoveries not only about the toy, but also about how things world in the world at large.

Some of the electronic games that claim to be educational are better than others, but they still expose children to a limited universe created by programmers who may or may not understand how children learn and think.  This brings us to the first reason that digital games are not nearly so good as physical learning toys for kids, even if they are considered to be educational.

Digital toys are limiting where physical toys are limitless

A digital game limits the player to a world imagined by a programmer.  Even games which claim to be educational have limits.  The real goal of a digital activity is to get the highest score possible which drives the game.

With real physical toys, a child is limited only by their own imaginations and creativity.  In an electronic game, a child can only play what has been created for them by programmers.   Creativity is stifled through the constant use of digital educational toys.  They can only respond to a pre-produced set of experiences with limited options.

A child’s choices are limited when it comes to electronic play.  When playing with traditional toys, a child can play alone, with a friend, or with an adult.  They can use the toy for purposes other than what the original intent was.  They can play with the toy in one way, and then change mid-course to do something else with it.  None of these scenarios are options when it comes to play with electronic educational games.

Electronic learning games and toys stifle vocabulary and oral language development

Oral language development is one of the best predictors of reading success, according to many early childhood literacy experts.  One of the best ways to develop a rich oral language in young children is accomplished by regular conversation with their parents and other “language experts”.

When a child plays a physical educational game with their child, they are engaged in conversation norms like taking turns, asking and answering questions, looking at the speaker and appropriate sentence structure.  They also learn proper grammar and higher level vocabulary through their interactions with others.

When a child is playing a digital game they are only learning vocabulary contained within the game, even if it is an educational game or activity.  Most of the language is very simple or game specific, and is not language that will be used in real conversations in the real world.  Again, children are stifled and limited by the constant use of these electronic games.

Social interactions are not created through the use of electronic learning games and toys

One of the best ways for children to learn social skills like taking turns and sharing is by playing with others.  When playing games, they learn patience when they have to wait to take their turn.  They learn to get along with others when they must share materials and learn about appropriate interactions.  Play is imperative to a child’s social development, and these skills are simply not present when playing electronic learning games.

When playing with others, children learn to read social cues from others and experience others’ points of view.  Most video games are isolated experiences; giving children limited opportunities to practice these all important skills.  Even games that are designed for play by more than one player do not promote actual interaction between players, but instead focus on competition.  There are very little opportunities for working cooperatively, like there are with physical toys and the opportunities for learning about the art of negotiation is nil.

Fine and gross motor skills are not challenged 

Fine and gross motor development occurs during young childhood and is achieved in many ways.  Like anything else practice makes perfect, and the way that young children practice is through play. 

When a child is playing with toys that have small pieces, drawing or cutting, their fine motor skills become more finely developed.  This will not only help them later as they begin to write, but throughout their lives. 

When they are playing activities that require running, jumping, kicking and climbing, their gross motor skills are becoming more developed.  Again, this will help them throughout their lives.

The child who spends the majority of their time playing electronic games will not achieve any of these benefits, and the best a parent can hope for is improved hand-eye coordination. These children often struggle with pencil grip, and find writing to be laborious because they have not developed the muscle control they need for this skill.

Shortened Attention Spans

Digital learning games are engaging.  No one can argue with that.  The problem however is that they can be almost too engaging.  Children are learning to expect immediate rewards, complete with bells, whistles, and other electronic stimulus.

The nature of a video game, even an educational one, is to move quickly and provide frequent rewards so that children continue to want to play.  Many times, children who spend a great deal of time with electronic devices have a difficult time paying attention to everyday activities.  They may struggle both at home and at school with attention related issues because of the immediate reward nature they are used to.

One of the beauties of childhood and of adulthood too for that matter, is the intrinsic reward we feel when we learn something new or do something well.  When children play with physical educational toys they feel pride in their accomplishment when they master a task.  Their self-confidence becomes stronger because they realize that they are capable.  These same emotions are not replicated through the use of electronic games.

Digital Learning Games do not allow for individual differences

It was mentioned earlier that children are limited by the vision of the programmer during electronic play.  This same issue also limits allowance for individual differences during electronic play. 

During play with physical educational toys for kids, children may use materials differently depending upon their individual differences.  With electronic play, there is typically only one way to play a game.  Not only is creativity stifled, but also there is very little allowance for individual differences.

Science has taught us that people learn in many different ways, and can have strengths and intelligences in multiple areas.  An electronic game does not and cannot account for these individual strengths and talents.  They usually appeal to one learning style, and are offer particularly little to learners whose best avenue for understanding is through a kinesthetic approach.

Physical fitness is negatively impacted by digital learning games

Almost everyone on the planet has heard about the studies involving childhood obesity.  It is an epidemic and continues to rise constantly.  There are several factors contributing to this phenomenon, but one of the most important ones is the amount of time that children now spend sitting instead of moving around. 

In an age where schools have been forced to cut physical fitness programs, and recess and outdoor play time has become restricted, play at home becomes increasingly important.  When children are playing with physical educational toys, they are moving around a great deal more than if they are playing with a digital educational toy.  Most digital toys are completely sedentary and offer very little chance for movement.  When children are playing with hands-on toys, they are much more physically active.  Even if they are playing a board game, they are still moving their bodies to a much greater degree than they are if they are playing a counting game on a laptop or tablet.

Physical educational toys for kids Are less expensive:  Technology is expensive.  Even educational video games cost a lot money, and in most instances, children tire of them after a short time.  Technology changes at the speed of light and as soon as you buy something, it is basically outdated.  Some of the most beloved toys have been around for generations, and are very inexpensive.  Balls, crayons, blocks and clay will provide your child with many years’ worth of learning and entertainment and will not cost an exurbanite amount of money.

Electronic games and equipment can cost parents a great deal of money, and are quickly discarded in favor of the newest and latest technology on the market.  Since these games and activities are not open ended, there is little opportunity for them to grow with your child.

The best toys focus on what the child can do versus what the toy can do

Experts in early childhood development offer this advice about selecting toys for your child:  Look for a toy that focuses not on what it can do, but on what the child can do.  In other words, select open ended toys with few rules, allowing the child to express their creative sides, using ingenuity and problem solving skills to create their own fun and learning. 

This most certainly sounds like sound advice, and yet we spend a great deal of money on toys that “do” for the child. 

Most Importantly:  Physical Educational Toys Consider a Child’s Whole Being

A good educational toy challenges a child in many ways.  Their mental, physical, social and emotional beings are all affected in ways that cannot be met by an electronic toy.  A good educational toy allows a child to explore, discover and learn in a multitude of ways.

So, there you have it.  There are a multitude of reasons that physical educational toys are better for children than digital educational toys.   While we most certainly want our children to understand technology, and become globally aware, when it comes to their play, it is imperative that parents not ignore physical toys in favor of electronic ones.  When it comes to learning, especially for our youngest children, play based learning has proven to be the best approach for them and the best way to accomplish this is not through electronic learning games.

top-educational-games-for-toddlers

14 Top Educational Games for Toddlers

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Toddlers are busy and budding young little humans who need to be shaped for a fine and dandy future. One of the best ways to do this is through buying educational games for toddlers that build fine motor and other skills using educational games for toddlers including early learning activities, block building, books and brainteasers, games and interactive learning. All of these things will develop the whole child, and play is one of the most important parts of their development.

So sit back, relax and take a look at our top educational games for toddlers that will get them on the right path to learning all there is to know about the world around them.

 

Top Educational Games for Toddlers 

1. Rainbow Mosaic Pattern Puzzles

This is an award-winning game for toddlers from the ages of 2 to 5. There are large interlocking tiles, which are the perfect size for little hands. They snap together and come apart quickly and easily. They can create huge floor mosaics and your toddler will be delighted to explore this nifty educational game for toddlers. It includes 96 hexagonal tiles in 8 different colours and 20 different pattern ideas on double-sided cards.

What will they learn?

Your toddler will explore shapes; develop early maths concepts like patterns and matching. It will also help them with hand-eye coordination and improve motor skills.

 

2. Playful Chef Deluxe Cooking Kit

When it comes to educational games for toddlers, then this one is right up there. This is another award-winning educational game which will keep little hands and minds busy for hours on end for ages 3 to 5.

Getting toddlers involved in the fun of cooking is awesome, and this kit has got heaps of tools that are just the right size for toddler hands. It includes a baking pan, mixing bowl, scissors, muffin liners and 5 illustrated recipe cards that are colour coded to the measuring cups and spoons. How awesome is that.

What will they learn?

They’ll have a hands-on kitchen experience, learn a bit of science, get used to measuring, understand a bit more about nutrition and of course that cleaning up is important too!

 

3. My First Fun Felt Board

It seems as if felt has made a comeback. Do you remember playing with felt when you were a kid? Well now your toddler can have just as much fun doing the same thing while learning as he goes along. Recommended for ages 1 to 5.

Watch in wonder as they create awesome scenes with the soft felt pieces, adding wiggly eyes to a clapping crab or flapping fins to a fish. The set includes 100 pre-cut felt shapes, a booklet with lots of ideas and a travel bag for easy storage.

What will they learn?

This great felt set is one of the best educational games for toddlers out there, even though it is so simple. Your toddler will practice their fine motor skills, understanding patterning, colour and shape recognition. Their creative minds will also be put to work.

 

4. UKloo Treasure Hunt Game

An award-winning treasure hunt game that is without a doubt one of the best educational games for toddlers as it teaches early reading skills and aimed at kids from the age of 4.

If you want your kids to start reading then this is the game for you. It’s disguised as a treasure hunt game. It not only gets kids active but they will be reading clues as they go on the hunt for their hidden surprise. There’s even a picture helper poster to look up words if your kids get stuck. They’ll be learning to read without even knowing it. This product was developed by a mom with the help of educational advisors, kids and parents too. It also includes an app download code. An all-round winner.

What will they learn?

They’ll be so involved and engaged in the game that they’ll be reading before they even realise it, what a bonus, a game to do all the hard work for you. It’s actually great for beginner readers or those who are a bit reluctant to get going, and is even great for ADHD and autistic kids.

 

5. Talking Microscope

Yes, there really is a talking microscope out there, and it’s an award-winning beauty too. If your kids are into the great outdoors and the wonderful world of insects then this is a great choice for educational games for toddlers. It all starts with 12 interactive slides, which highlights different insects like a honey bee, flea, mosquito or even the scary black widow spider. There is a 5 x microscope lens with light so that your kids can get a close up view of each bug. As they go along they will listen to some cool facts and there’s even a fun quiz game format.

What will they learn?

They’ll learn about the world around them and how to appreciate nature in all its beauty. This is one cool science toy too! Their concentration skills will improve too as they have to listen carefully to complete the quiz.

 

6. Imagination Magnets

Kids just love to play with magnets, and this is a great sturdy toy set for young minds that will last for years to come and is recommended for kids aged 3 and up.

It comes in a great wooden carrying case with durable hinges and rope handles. Inside you’ll discover 42 brightly coloured wooden magnetic blocks which can be arranged on boards to replicate any of the 50 full colour puzzles. Plus the magnetic play surface acts as a dry-erase board too. What a great way to get those creative juices flowing.

What will they learn?

With the Imagination Magnets your kids will develop fine-motor skills and visual thinking skills, teaching them while they have heaps of fun.

 

7. Pattern Play Bright Colours

Yes, another award-winning wooden toy that is ideal for educational toys for toddlers aged 3 and up.

Your kids can use their imaginations or use the 40 pattern cards to add to the fun. It includes 40 exceptionally well-made wooden blocks in an array of bright and fresh colours, a square wooden building tray and a canvas storage bag. This will bring hours of fun.

What will they learn?

With this great educational toy, the Pattern Play blocks are a brilliant introduction to maths concepts like sorting, matching, symmetry, congruence and fractions. As they also build with unusual shapes it strengthens their spatial skills.

 

8. Hucklebee Game

This is a cute and cuddly plush toy which unbelievably is right up there with educational toys for toddlers aged from 18 months to 4 years old. This interactive little bee is a powerful learning tool. You get the wonderful soft Hucklebee of course, which is a great teaching friend! You also get action instruction cards!

As a parent, you will read the action instructions from the deck of cards, and your child has to follow the prompts, like rub noses, clap hands together and many more.

What will they learn?

This is a great friend when it comes to learning. Your toddler will learn all about colours, shapes and how to follow directions.

 

9. Design and Drill Activity Centre

Expect heaps of fun and an educational toy that will last the distance. The Design and Drill Activity Centre comes with 20 cards to follow, or your kids can create their own designs by themselves. The cards will allow your child to copy the design onto their blank drilling grid. It also comes with a power drill that has a forward and reverse action, with realistic sounds, to make it even more fun. It includes the cards, the drill, a screwdriver handle, a wrench and 120 bolts in 5 colours.

What will they learn?

As your toddler makes patterns and pictures by drilling the bolts onto the board they’ll develop their coordination, matching and counting skills.

 

10. Brainbox: Pictures

Educational toys for toddlers don’t get much better than this! Your kids will study pictures and the facts side of the card for 10 seconds then flip to the other side and see how many of the questions they can answer, for example “Was the child sitting or standing?”, “Was the dog lying down or sitting?” or even “Does the rainbow have a red stripe?” The set comes with 55 cards a sand timer to add to the fun and a die.

What will they learn?

They will improve their memories second to none.

 

11. Primary Science Set

Welcome to the world of science, where your young explorers can dibble and dabble in making some super cool things.  They will be creating all sorts of science experiments in no time at all.

It includes a beaker, eyedropper, flask, funnel, goggles, magnifying glass, 3 test tubes with 2 racks, tweezers as well as 10 laminated activity cards.

What will they learn?

Well this is perfect for learning all about science, and the pieces are big enough for little hands to develop their fine-motor skills and coordination too.

 

12. Spielgaben

If you’re looking for the ultimate in educational games for toddlers, then you’ve just found it. The Spielgaben educational toy is a force to be reckoned with. This amazingly crafted educational game will last from the age of 2 years old all the way up to 12 years old. There is so much that is packed into this awesome toy, like play boards, thin tablets, sticks, rings and blocks. But it doesn’t end there, it has shapes like cones, pyramids and columns, vertex balls and rods and curriculum based digital learning resources to help you along your way to maximise this amazing toy.

It comes in an awesome wooden storage box, which has individual drawers for the different components of the toy, making it easy to find, easy to clean up and easy to play.

What will they learn?

Well, a lot! They will learn to think mathematically through manipulation of the various elements included and learn about patterning, sorting, counting, geometry, addition and subtraction, multiplication and division as well as fractions. That’s a mighty educational toy. But it’s not just about maths; it also encourages reading and writing. There are so many learning areas that it can be used for like science, social studies, history, geography and music too through hands-on expression.

Then there’s still the added bonus of the curriculum based digital learning resources, which are extensive to say the least. The user guides go in sequence and clearly explain what each piece of material or equipment is used for and gives heaps of ideas for play.

 

13. GeoPlay: Confetti Colours

This is a super cool building game for young learners as they create all sorts of shapes from notched circles, triangles, squares and half octagons. They are specially engineered to lock sturdily when you put them all together. The shapes and patterns your kids can create are endless. The set includes 200 pieces in 4 colours.

What will they learn?

Your kids will create imaginative, free form sculptures and through this their motor skills will improve and they’ll also understand all about balance. A great overall educational toy for toddlers.

 

14. Hello Sunshine

This is a first introduction to the classic game of hide and seek, with a twist of learning involved. Recommended for kids from 2 to 5 years old.

You can play hide and seek with Sunshine, who is an awesome plush toy. The game includes the adorable Sunshine plush toy character as well as 18 double-sided cards with 36 hiding place clues, instructions and a parent’s guide. The kids will love this.

What will they learn?

Educational toys for toddlers don’t get much better than this as you teach your kids positional words to help them out for reading and writing as they get older. The types of worlds you’ll teach them are in, on top, below, next to and many more.

There are our top 14 educational toys for toddlers, where they’ll be learning without realising it and having a blast at the same time. Do you have any other ideas for educational toys to share with us?

 

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9 Things to Consider when Buying Educational Toys for Toddlers

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consider-buying-educational-toys-for-toddlers

Sometimes we head out into the great world of toy stores and buy up whatever we can find, toys that make noises, sing and dance and have every button you can push with bright lights shining through. Dear parents, this is not really the way to go. You need to consider what educational toys for toddlers are the best. After all, we all want our kids to have great toys, but having educational toys will enrich their learning experience even more.

You might be surprised to hear this, but toy stores aren’t actually the best place to buy educational toys for toddlers, as there is little focus put on education and more focus put on fun. The educational aisles are normally a huge disappointment with heaps of battery operated toys that have all the bells and whistles. This isn’t going to teach your child important skills.

What’s important to understand is that an educational toy for your toddler should be a cool learning tool, where your child needs to be able to ask questions and answer them. When it comes to educational toys the toy itself is asking the questions.

Here are some important things to consider when you’re buying educational toys for toddlers.

9 Things to Consider before Buying Educational Toys for Toddlers

 1. Understand what Educational Toys are

Playing for kids is a part of growing up and learning about the world around them, and educational toys for toddlers are the best things you can buy to help along the process of learning. Remember anything can be a toy and can be as simple things such as kitchen pan lids or even paper sack puppets. Anything they can play with safely is considered a toy.

2. Different types of Educational Toys

Educational toys for toddlers can be divided into a couple of groups, depending on what part of the child it helps to develop. Consider these when making your purchasing decisions.

  • Toys which build physical and muscle development such as wagons, bikes, boxes, puzzles, blocks, brooms and shovels.
  • Sensory toys which help them understand touch, sight, sound, taste and smell. These are things like water toys, musical instruments, bubbles, play dough and also sand toys. You can even create things like sensory bins, where your kids have to dig in a large tray or rice to find little surprises along the way.
  • Make-believe toys are great for social development such as dolls, dress-up clothes, cars, trucks, board games and books.
  • Toys for creative and intellectual development such as clay, crayons, paints, books, paper and scissors.

You’ll often find that toys fall into a number of different categories, for example a wagon can help kids develop their muscles and can also help them to engage in imaginary play. Kids need a balance of toys from each group for the whole development of the child.

3. Why are Educational Toys for Toddlers so Important?

In a nutshell, kids need to have a greater connection and experience with the world around them in order to make sense of it all. Think about all the milestones that your kids reach like sitting up, talking, walking and with toddlers, running is a definite. They are learning what things are and how they work. They will learn all the things they need to know by playing with educational toys.

Let’s use this as an example. Babies don’t know about gravity when they’re born and they don’t know that stuff that is dropped when it falls. They learn this through play, and become quite fascinated about it too at the same time. When you give it back, there is no doubt they’ll throw it down again to see if it does the same thing. This is one game that they seriously enjoy partaking in. Watch as everything starts landing on the floor, even their food! They understand gravity through play.

Educational toys for toddlers are important for lots of reasons…they exercise muscles, they learn to balance and coordination, they build their upper body muscles as they put blocks on top of each other. And these skills come from toys, and that’s the educational kind that we’re talking about. Toys are also important to develop imagination…watch what a cardboard box turns into when you give it to them. They engage in “Let’s pretend…” and toys are the key to this.

Amazingly kids also develop self-confidence when they play. As they master the art of their toys, like finishing a puzzle or blowing a bubble, they build up a sense of power, feeling mighty proud of themselves as they know they can do it. But as parents it’s also important for you to take notice when your child keeps asking you to look at what they’ve done and recognise their accomplishments; this helps them to feel worthwhile and bring that self-confidence soaring in.

So self-esteem goes up, which also helps them to build the basic principle of being good friends. Toys can help kids to learn to cooperate with other kids. If they’re building a sand castle, it goes a whole heap faster than doing it by themselves. Playing in groups helps them to understand and discover how others think and feel and what is acceptable and what is not. They learn about sharing and how it brings happiness to another child and when they don’t share they also learn that this doesn’t get a good response.

Along with building self-esteem, toys can be the basis for friendships. Toys like teeter-totters only work when children cooperate. Projects like building sand castles go faster with friends.

Through toys, kids can use their energy and discover their emotions too. And toddlers, well they’re seriously active…their toys will help them to keep active and hopefully tire them out for bed!

If kids are working through some anger, things like splashing water or pounding play dough can help them to release all that anger without throwing a temper tantrum hopefully.

4. Remember the Ages and Stages of Educational Toys

Have you ever heard the dreaded words of “I’m bored,” or “I have nothing to do”? Well if you have here are a few tips to get them on their way to help them with their boredom. Help them choose a toy with some of guidelines below to make sure you’re giving them a good choice.

  • What are your kids interested in? What do they like to do and ask yourself whether it’s safe for their age? Toys that are safe for one age are not necessarily safe for toddlers, like marbles for instance. Toddlers still put things in their mouth and you don’t want a hospital visit to get a marble out of them.
  • Do the educational toys for toddlers capture their interests? Are they attractive? Kids will naturally play with a good toy and they won’t need to be forced to do it. When buying toys always think of the way that they can manipulate it, change it and use it in a number of ways to get different results. This will keep them interested for longer.
  • Can they use the toy alone or do you need to get down on the floor with them and play together. This is a great bonding time, and can also teach your child different ways of working with their toys.
  • What do you want the toy to do? Do you want to calm them down, then books and puzzles are the answer as opposed to high energy toys like balls.

5. The Rules of Play

It’s always important to consider the rules of play when you are playing with educational toys for toddlers. Bear the following in mind.

  • Watch and don’t interrupt their play and make-believe games. Watch what they’re interested in and what their skill level is. What toys are their favourites? Why?
  • Ask your kids to tell you about what they’re doing and please don’t judge them, encourage them.
  • Join in and play at their level but let your child lead the play. Adding too many ideas too quickly will confuse them and perhaps even disappoint you, which is what you don’t want.
  • After you’ve been playing for a while try and introduce a more challenging stage of play. If your child can build a tower of 5 blocks, then try and get them to do 7. You can always show them how to use blocks to make different things like garages and houses amongst others.
  • Watch and see if they explore the new way of playing with the toy. Once they’ve mastered the next art, then try and introduce another activity. Studies have shown that when you expand on their play at the right time their quality of play improves and they learn more from their toy and enjoy it more too.

6. Educational Toys for Toddlers

If you’re a parent of a toddler then you know without a doubt how active these little beings can be! Climbing, jumping and running are all part of their daily activities, and they can be hard to keep up with. Toys that you buy will need to meet these needs. They’re also interested in doing things with their hands as their muscles in their hands develop.

Educational toys for toddlers should be simple and you need to make sure that they don’t need too much coordination.

During the toddler time, they love imitating grown-ups so things like dress-up clothes are super awesome.

Another great choice for toddlers is sensory materials like paint, play dough, crayons and chalk. They aren’t really interested in painting or drawing a masterpiece quite yet, but they like to scribble and mix colours. Ask them what they think of their creation rather than asking that what it is.

Remember those little mouths still like things to go into them, so watch out for small parts. They also like to eat pretty much everything they see, so make sure that everything is non-toxic. The toys should be sturdy with no sharp edges or points.

7. Appropriate Educational Toys for Toddlers

Here are some cool educational toys suitable for toddlers.

  • Push-pull toys
  • Pedal toys
  • Trucks or cars big enough to ride
  • Wagons
  • Balls and bean bags
  • Climbing structures
  • Books with simple stories
  • Wooden blocks
  • Peg boards
  • Puzzles
  • Creative materials (crayons, playdough, paint)
  • Water play toys
  • Simple dress-up clothes
  • Dolls and stuffed animals
  • Play boards
  • Sticks and rings
  • Cones, pyramids and columns
  • Vertex balls and rods
  • Boxes

8. How to Play with your Kids

There are a number of ways that you can play with your kids to enrich their learning experience as toddlers. Here are a few ideas.

  • Play pretend games like making believe that your animals, or creating a traffic jam with their cars
  • Play tag, bounce or catch with balls and bean bags
  • Play follow the leader or create a toddler obstacle course
  • Let them imitate your activities too such as sweeping the floor
  • Play with them with when it comes to toys like play boards, sticks and rings, cones and other shapes and vertex balls and rods to show them how they can change things.

9. Great Educational Toys for Toddlers

Building toys for toddlers are awesome, as they encourage inquiry, experimentation and social interaction. Geometrical toys are awesome as they give kids a sense of symmetry, pattern recognition and proportion all through play. Spielgaben is just one example of some great ideas.

Final words

So there are 9 top tips when considering what educational toys for toddlers. We hope this helps you along the way to get the best toys out there for learning and fun!

 

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15 Benefits of Wooden Educational Toys for Home Education

By | Educational Toys | 2 Comments

 

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Every year, companies develop new toys and games for education. Most of them feature intricately-designed plastic pieces. Some come with all the bells and whistles. Many have been designed for a few specific purposes.

While these toys may play a role in your child’s education, you can end up spending a lot of money, but not receiving a lot of educational value. Wooden toys, however, often have a lot more to offer children than the latest trendy educational toys. Here are 15 Benefits of Wooden Educational Toys for Home Education.

1. Wooden Toys are Timeless

Of course, wooden toys are trendy in their own right. In fact, they have been trendy for decades, if not centuries. Your grandparents and great-grandparents were learning with wooden toys when they were young and your grandchildren and great-grandchildren can also learn with wooden toys. While there are a lot of cool, new educational products out there, sometimes there’s value in sticking with the tried and true. Even if companies reimagine the organization, color, or design of their wooden toys, they still have the same classic feel and offer the same educational benefits that children have been reaping for generations.

2. Wooden Toys are Durable

Let’s face it – children are rough on their toys and other educational materials. You likely have missing game pieces and at least one broken toy laying around your home. Not only can wooden toys be enjoyed by generations, but the same wooden toys often last throughout generations. Since they’re made of quality wood and are solid, it’s hard for them to be damaged beyond the basic scratch or dent. If your child gets them dirty, you can easily clean them so they’re ready for the next learning activity. If you’re going to invest in learning products for your home, you want to be sure they will last a long time and that they can be used with multiple children.

3. Wooden Toys Grow with Your Child

When you invest in wooden toys for home education, you invest in something that is durable and versatile enough to grow with your child. Toddlers and preschoolers may engage in simple imaginative play and basic manipulation with wooden toys, but older children can begin to incorporate wooden toys in more complex imaginative scenarios, work them into discussions of geometry and physics, and use them to solve problems. As your child’s skills and mental abilities grow, the uses for wooden toys also grow. While many products for home education come with suggested age ranges on the front, the ways wooden toys can be used are so versatile that they can connect with a broad range of ages and ability levels.

4. Wooden Toys Encourage Imagination

Wooden toys give children the ability to take control. While some wooden toys come in the shape of vehicles, food, or common household items, they still encourage children to use their imaginations to incorporate them into learning and play. Other wooden educational toys come in basic shapes, such as sticks, blocks, arcs, triangles, and circles. These basic shapes allow children to really explore their uses and come up with creative ways to use them in different subject areas. For example, children can experiment with physics by building different structures with the wooden toys or learn about geometry by manipulating the toys to create their own geometric patterns.

While learning resources can provide you with ideas for using wooden toys to educate your child at home, they’re just a starting point, a way to pique your child’s interest before letting them come up with even more creative uses. Younger children in particular can fit virtually any object into any scenario. Since most wooden toys don’t come with a pre-conceived purpose, they encourage children to stretch their imaginations even further.

5. Wooden Toys Incorporate Real-Life Skills

As children engage in imaginative play, much of it will trend toward real-life scenarios. For example, children may have wooden toys in the shape of food and common household items to use as they play a game of house or grocery store. Even if children just have basic shapes, they may begin to use wooden toys and their imaginations to build real-life skills. For example, wooden sticks may come to represent currency as they buy and sell other wooden objects. Red circles may become strawberries and blue circles may become blueberries as they make a wooden fruit salad.

6. Wooden Toys are Less Distracting

When children play with wooden toys, they supply all the voices, alarms, and other sound effects, rather than listening to the toy. This allows children to be in control of what they do with the toys and to keep their minds clear as they think through different scenarios or solve problems. While some children really enjoy toys with all the bells and whistles, the noises and electronic features can interrupt a child’s thinking process or limit how far a child’s imagination can go by boxing them into specific ways to play with the toy.

7. Wooden Toys Encourage Interaction

When children use their imaginations and practice real-life scenarios, they often like to bring others in on their play. Toys that have voices or other sound effects often encourage solo play since children get the interaction and responses they crave from the toy itself.

Since wooden toys don’t come with sounds, lights, or other interactive features, children must find others to interact with them. If you have multiple children at home, wooden toys become something more than one child can play with at once. If you only have one child or prefer to focus on education in a one-on-one setting, your can provide that interaction with your child. By interacting with your child as they play with wooden toys you can help build their understanding and provide positive reinforcement as they make decisions.

8. Wooden Toys Develop Reasoning Skills

Since wooden toys don’t have voices or electronic parts to tell them what piece to pick up or what step to take next and they aren’t designed to fit a specific activity, children develop their reasoning skills as they learn with wooden toys. For example, children may want to make a model to help answer a science question or figure out how to make a shape using tangram-style wooden shapes. As children manipulate the different shapes and sizes of wooden toys, they’re building their reasoning skills. They also build reasoning skills as they organize their wooden toys into different categories. For example, they may opt to organize them by size, by shape, or even by color.

9. Wooden Toys Support Problem-Solving

Wooden toys also have the ability to support problem-solving. On a more basic level, children can use wooden toys to help provide visual representations of addition and subtraction problems. They can also be used to create logic puzzles for children to solve, to build towers that will withstand different forces acting upon them, or to create models to help represent different advanced math and science problems. Because wooden toys come in more general shapes and sizes, children will have to problem-solve to figure out how to make them fit certain scenarios rather than having the pre-made pieces that often come with other educational sets.

10. Wooden Toys Improve Hand-Eye Coordination

Because of their more basic shapes, wooden toys also help children build hand-eye coordination. Activities such as building towers out of wooden blocks, carefully placing the pieces so the towers don’t topple over, or threading a string through a series of wooden beads, require children to pay attention to distance and placement. Children can also use wooden toys to begin to represent concepts such as over, under, beside, up, and down. When they solve puzzles or create patterns using wooden toys they also begin to visually see how items fit together, which also improves their hand-eye coordination.

11. Wooden Toys Build Fine Motor Skills

As children manipulate wooden toys, they also build their fine motor skills. Wooden toys come in different shapes and sizes. Rather than being molded to fit a small child’s hand, they can sometimes be a bit clunky and awkward for children to handle. While clunky and awkward may not seem like an ideal trait in a toy, the design of wooden toys requires children to work on different ways of grasping and manipulating the toys to get them to do what they need them to do. Babies and toddlers can work on basic grasping skills with larger wooden blocks and toys, while preschoolers and older kids can use wooden shapes, beads, and sticks to focus on a finer grasp, twisting the wrist, and other key motor skills.

12. Wooden Toys are Tactile

Unlike toys made of lightweight plastic, many wooden toys have a bit of weight to them, so when children interact with the toys they are more aware of what they are doing. This weight can be particularly beneficial for children with delays in the development of their fine motor skills or those with sensory disorders because heavier toys will help them feel their movements as they work to develop their skills. The tactile element of wooden toys also mean children have to think more and exert more energy as they play and learn. For example, the wheels on a wooden toy car may not move as smoothly as on a plastic or metal car, requiring children to apply more force to make it move.

13. Wooden Toys are Safe

As children manipulate the wooden toys, you don’t have to worry much about their safety because wooden toys are designed to be safe. Most wooden toys won’t break easily, which means children won’t be exposed to sharp edges or small pieces that have broken off of the toy. They’re also generally non-toxic and made from natural materials, which means children can manipulate them by chewing on them or sucking on them. You don’t have to worry about polluting your home with unknown chemicals or worry about what your child could possibly be eating.

14. Wooden Toys are Quiet

Not only will wooden toys not pollute your home with chemicals, they won’t pollute your home with a lot of noise. While this lack of noise keeps kids from being distracted, it also provides parents with the quiet they so often need during the day. Children cannot accidentally leave a wooden toy running or have to listen to incessant beeps and boops as they play. Instead, you can focus on the sound of your children’s voices and laughter as they learn and interact with their wooden toys. When your children go to sleep, the toys are asleep and quiet too.

15. Wooden Toys are Beautiful

Whether you have a dedicated space for education at home or you simply include educational toys with your child’s other toys, you want the area to look nice. Wooden toys come with their own aesthetic appeal. Those with bright colors can add a bit of positive energy to the learning process, even if they’re just sitting on a shelf. Those in a plain wood color can help make the room look nice without distracting children from whatever they are working on. If the toys are just sitting out in your general living space, they have the ability to blend in with your regular décor. This allows you to leave them out and let children interact with them whenever the urge strikes, rather than hiding them away when guests visit.

Wooden toys may cost more than a lot of the latest educational toys, but they come with an incredible value. Rather than coming with a set purpose and a limited use, wooden toys have the potential to last for years. As children grow, they will find different ways to use wooden toys to help build their imaginations, solve problems, and develop fine motor and reasoning skills. While they may not be the toys children see on television or at their friends’ homes, wooden toys are the timeless toys that allow children to learn and grow every time they pull them out to play and their beauty and safety means that they can be left out for children to interact with, rather than keeping them stored away.

 

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Effective Tips that Can Help to Improve Your Children’s Learning

By | Educational Toys, Learning, Parenting, Parenting Tips | No Comments

 

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Can you still remember the things that your parents have done or have given in order for you to be smart? Your parents probably sent you to a great school. When you became a parent, you definitely do and give the best to your child just like what your parents did. Do you give educational toys to your child? Well, those kinds of toys are the best because your child can learn while having fun.

Supporting your children on their studies and guiding them will make it easy for them to achieve their goal. If you don’t help your children, they will possibly lose interest in studying or will have a hard time reaching their goals in the future. There are lots of things that you can give to your children in order for them to study well. Giving all the needs of your children for their studies can definitely motivate them.

If you lack knowledge on how to help or what to give to your children to help them on their studies, you can always ask your parents for some tips. By reading this post, you will definitely learn some effective tips that can help to improve your children’s learning.

Here are the effective tips that can help to improve your children’s learning:

School Supplies

If your children are already going to school, you need to give them tools that can help them learn quickly. Your parents definitely have bought you notebook, pen, crayons, and other things that you can use for learning including bag that you can use to carry all of your school supplies. Your children can jot down all the things that they can’t understand on their notebook and study them after. If your children lack tools for learning, they possibly won’t get a high grade or scores in exam. You can also make your children’s school supply cool like buying a notebook with their favourite cartoon character printed on it. It will definitely keep your children motivated on studying.

Good Books

You definitely know that books are great source of knowledge and every school provides books for each subject to your children. Did you know that giving good books to your children can also help to expand their knowledge? Yes, they will definitely learn through books that are given by the school, but isn’t it great if they have extra or stock knowledge that they can use to tackle some trials that will come in their lives? As a parent, you also need to consider the books that you give to your children; you need to make sure that they are suitable for their age.

Internet

Yes! Internet! Just like books, Internet is also great tool go gain knowledge. Your children cannot surf the Internet without a personal computer. Your children can also easily make their projects in school quickly by the use the computer. If the library is far from your house, your children can easily open the computer and start searching for the answers to their questions. As a parent, you need to watch your children while they surf the Internet. There are some websites that are not suitable for kids.

Private Tutor

If your children are having hard time learning in school or if they are always absent because of sickness, hiring a private tutor is a good idea. A private tutor will teach your children the lessons that they missed in school in a way that your children will surely understand. There are some kids who feel uncomfortable in school that’s why they are having difficulties in learning. Still, as a parent, you need to motivate your children to go to school. When choosing a tutor, make sure that his/her attitude or personality will suit your children.

Support

As a parent, you need to help your children when they are having difficulties on some things in school. For example, they have projects and they don’t know how to start doing it; you need to guide or help them. You can help them by supporting them on all the things that they need in order to finish their project. Always remember that there are some things that your children can finish without your help. So it is very important to ask your children about their needs.

The growth and the future of a child depend on the parents. So it is very important to support your children on all their needs. You also need to do some things that can motivate your children. For example, you want your children to read books; it would be better if you read books to them. Basically, you need to be a role model.

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Importance of Puzzle and Building Blocks Games for Preschoolers

By | Educational Games & Tools, Educational Toys, Learning | 2 Comments

 

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Many of us know that kids must play different learning toys like best-selling educational wooden toys. These toys are better than the other toys because some of the toys are made from different materials and chemicals that can be hazardous to the health of a child. These wooden puzzle and building blocks toys are safer to be played by most children because they don’t have any material that is hazardous to health. We all know that during the early age of children, they must be exposed to different learning habits like solving puzzle or building something with the help of building block toys. This will help them enhance their memory and also their coordination skills to show and make the things that came from their minds.

By this method, you are giving the opportunity to your child to learn while having fun by playing these toys with the presence of your guidance. It is important that as the kids play these toys, they have the interest on what they are doing. One of the things that you must show to your kids is that whatever you teach or show to them will be fun.

There are lots of parents who are worried about these toys because they think that their kids might swallow a piece, which may be a serious case. This problem is just simple to solve. First of all, you must watch your children play or just be there at their side to guide them and teach them what to do and the things that they must not do.

Best-selling wooden blocks toy activities for learning are great tool to enhance your child’s capacity to think and to enhance skills in the early ages.

If you are not aware or about these benefits and advantage of puzzle and building blocks games for your child, this article will define the things that these games will give your kids.

Good Learning Tools

Every child has this excitement to play because it’s just a part of his/her nature as a kid. In their early age, kids want to discover more and explore more things. Playing is just normal for most of the kids because as they play, there are lots of things they receive for their physical and mental development.

When kids play puzzles or building blocks, they have this sort of behaviour where in they will get some pieces but then they will pause for a while before putting the piece of toy in place. This process shows that before putting the piece to the right place, children think different things and ask themselves where the right place for this piece is. This process allows children to build their memory and analyse each situation before making a move.

Puzzles and building blocks help children to develop their memory, we all know that right? That is why giving your child with these wooden educational puzzle toys is a very good idea.

Active Playing Process

All kids want to play whatever games they want. Sometimes, they are the ones who create their own game and the ones who invent the game’s mechanics. That is a good sign of learning because not all children have that ability. Some children are not active in playing. Sometimes they are just tired from the game itself and they lose interest on it.

By the help of wooden puzzle and building blocks toys, you can make your child have an interest on playing these toys. These toys contain different shapes and colours, enabling the user to have unlimited options on what kind of games they want to make.

Developed Language Skills

Some say that language skills are not developed through playing; well for us, it’s not true. Language skills can be developed through playing because it’s obvious. When children play, they keep on talking, reading, and communicating to each other, that’s why they are required to speak. Sometimes when kids are playing building blocks or puzzles, they will also read each and every instruction they have from the box before playing. That is why there is no reason why their language skills can’t be improved while playing, because each and every playing method they will do, language is always there.

Sharp Memory

We all know that playing puzzle games is good for kids because it sharpens the memory day after day. This process is good for kids because they will have different advantages as they grow old. Kids with sharp mind have the advantage because they have lots of things in their mind that other kids don’t.

Achievement of Small Goals

Here is one thing that a kid will enjoy—setting some small goals in their playing time, but how? Just tell your child that from this particular time until tomorrow, he/she must finish the whole work or maybe half from either putting the puzzle together or building something from wooden blocks. Just start with light conditions to minimise some pressure to your child. When they finish it on time, just give them some small rewards that can make them do more great things.

Hand and Eye Coordination

As they put the pieces together or the wooden blocks together, their hand and eye coordination is functioning, which is important for all of the kids out there. This process will enhance their eye and hand coordination from putting pieces together and identifying the correct solution for each situation when they play puzzle or building blocks.

Enhanced Imaginations and Creativity

Imagination and creativity are part of the things that these toys can enhance. As children think different things and as they learn from playing, their imagination and creativity will improve, enabling them to create new things in their mind and make new things ahead.

Improved Problem Solving Skills

Playing with different puzzle and building blocks toys will also improve children’s problem solving skills. This process allows them to think and think until they find the solution that will enable them to be smarter in solving each problem they have.

Happiness

One thing that you will never take away from a child when playing is happiness, which makes their life as a kid complete.

There you have them, the different advantages of playing puzzles and wooden blocks for kids. We are sure that you have learned different things from this article and we are pretty sure that this article will help you in raising your child to be smarter.

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Tips on How to Enhance Your Child’s Knowledge

By | Educational Toys, Learning, Parenting, Parenting Tips | No Comments

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Education is very important for every individual. If a person is well educated, he/she can tackle every trial that will come on his/her life. Learning starts from the time when we were born. We expand our knowledge by the help of our parents. If you are already a parent, you definitely give everything to your child in order to make him/her smarter. Most parents give their children educational toys to help on their learning (remember that every child loves to play). There are also parents that feed their child with foods that help make their child’s brain active.

As a parent, you need to focus and help on your child’s learning. If you don’t guide or help your child on his/her learning, his/her development will surely be slow. If you want to enhance your child’s knowledge, you need to know all the things that can help on his/her education. With the tips below, you can definitely make your child smarter in order to achieve his/her goals in the future.

Here are some tips on how to enhance your child’s knowledge:

Send Him/Her to School

Yes! This is the main thing that you need to do in order to expand your child’s knowledge or make him/her smarter. When your child is at the right age, you need to send him/her to school. In school, teachers act as the second parent of your child. They will teach everything they know starting from the basics, like shapes, colours, numbers, etc. As your child’s grows, they will also learn how to read, write, and compute. Teachers will surely provide students activities to practice what they’ve learned. There are also kids who don’t want to enter school; in order to avoid that, you need to motivate your child. Tell your child how important education is. You can also ask the teacher if you can watch your child at school. In that way, you will also know if your child is doing well in school. If you are busy on some other tasks and can’t visit school often, you can ask his/her teacher about his/her performance. As a parent, you also need to choose the right school for your child, so choose a school that has already built reputation.

Hire a Tutor

If your child is having hard time learning in school, don’t lose hope because you can always hire a tutor for your child. A tutor is a private teacher that will teach your child at home. One of the reasons why your child is having hard time learning in school is because of the distractions around him/her. Since a tutor teaches your child in your house, your child will be able to focus and learn without any distractions.  A tutor also focuses on a certain area where your child is having a problem. Another good thing about hiring a tutor is when your child missed some lessons in school because he/she got sick, the tutor will discuss the lessons that your child missed in an advanced method. When hiring a tutor, you need to choose the one who has a personality that will suit your child.

Invest on Educational Toys

As I’ve mentioned before, most parents give their children some educational toys to help on their development. Wooden educational toys are great help to enhance your children’s imagination and creativity skills. As a parent, you need to choose the right toy for your children. Even if you want to make them happy, choose the toys that will make them enjoy and, at the same time, learn. A shape sorting toy is also a good toy; your children will surely expand their knowledge about shapes. Avoid giving your children a toy that is addictive like video games; there are times that they will lose interest in school because of it.

Do Outdoor Activities

Outdoor activities are great help to develop your child’s physical body. If your child loves playing toys that expands his/her knowledge, you sometimes need to take him/her outside to do some outdoor activities. Let your child play sports with his/her friends. For example, your child plays basketball; it can enhance his/her leg and arm strength, can improve his/her stamina, and help lose fats. Your child will also learn how to interact with other kids and make some friends. He/she will also enhance his/her strategy making skills when playing with other kids. As a parent, you need to watch your child while he/she is playing to act immediately if accidents occurred.

Each of these tips can help to enhance your child’s knowledge. The knowledge that your child obtain can be used on his/her everyday life.

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Different Benefits of Playing for Every Child

By | Educational Games & Tools, Educational Toys, Learning, Play Activities | No Comments

 

different-benefits-of-playing-for-every-child

Children need to go to school in order to expand their knowledge. In school, they will learn everything they need to know by the help of their teachers. Students will learn how to compute, things about science, good moral or attitude, and how to read and write. In addition to their learning, teacher will give them homework in order to know if they learn something on their everyday lesson. When weekends come, most children spend their time playing with their toys that is why most parents give them educational toys. In that way, their children learn while playing.

Most children are getting addicted on the toy that they play and sometimes they lose interest on going to school because of it. As a parent, you definitely should know what kind of toy you will give to your child. You definitely want your child to enjoy playing and make him/her happy. Since you also experienced the joy of being a child, you surely want your child to experience it and you want him/her to have something to remember when he/she grows old. To know more about the benefits of playing, read the list below.

Here are the different benefits of playing for every child:

Expanded Knowledge

As I’ve mentioned before, your child will learn new things when you send him/her to school, but did you know that by just playing, your child will also be able to learn new things? For example, you give your child a toy that he/she has never seen before. It will be stored in his/her brain and that will be added on his/her knowledge. Another is if you play sports like basketball with your child, he/she will learn the proper dribbling and proper shooting, and because he/she enjoys playing it, your child will surely play it always so it will enhance his/her skills. Your child can expand his/her knowledge depending on the type of toy that he/she will play. So it is very advisable if you give your child educational toys.

Developed Mental Skills

This is one of the great benefits of playing. No one can play a toy or game without thinking. If you give your child a toy like Lego bricks, your child’s creativity will be enhanced. Your child will be able to build the things in his/her mind using Lego bricks. Another great toy on improving mental skills is board games, and one good example of those is Scrabble. Your children can expand their vocabulary, learn the right spelling of every word, and learn new words. The knowledge that your children gain on playing board games can also be applied at school. Most teachers give a spelling quiz for every student so your children will possibly pass every spelling quiz because they have learned lots of word with Scrabble.

Ability to Make Friends

Sometimes your child will get bored playing when he/she is alone. You can take your child on a park wherein he/she will be able to play with other kids. Your child can definitely make friends with other kids. Tell your child to be good with other kids, because if he/she shows a bad attitude, other kids will not go near him/her. There is nothing much happier than playing with friends. If your child already has friends, he/she will also learn how to take care of them. If you let your child play with other kids, make sure that you are ready if such thing occurs. You need to bring first aid kit.

Improved Health Condition

Yes! Your child’s health condition can also be improved by playing. Every child loves to play sports. For example, your child is playing soccer with other kids, he/she will enhance his/her leg strength by continual running and kicking. Your child’s stamina will also be improved and it is good for the heart. Muscles will surely build up because playing sports can help lose fats. Even if your child is active in playing sports, you also need to choose the right food for your child. Make sure that it is also healthy.

Enjoyment

The main reason why kids love to play is because they enjoy and they are happy. When your child is playing, he/she creates an unforgettable memory when he/she gets old. So as a parent, you need to give everything to your child just to make him/her happy. Playing also gets your child in good mood especially if he/she is enjoying it. There are times that your child will forget about his/her problems or sickness (if he/she is sick) when he/she is playing his/her favourite toy.

As a parent, you need to watch your child while he/she plays. You also need to teach your child to take care of his/her toys. Remember that toys are your child first best friend so that your child needs to give importance to them.

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Educational-Manipulatives-01

Educational Manipulatives-A Great Tool for Children of All Ages

By | Educational Toys, Play Based Learning | No Comments

There is a great deal of research that indicates that using manipulatives in the classroom is an excellent tool for teachers and students. The use of these hands-on materials not only makes lessons more interesting for students, but also helps to make abstract concepts much more concrete. These tools are effective during math instruction in particular, but may also be used for any type of reasoning, problem solving, cooperative learning or oral language activity.

While math manipulatives are a staple in the lower elementary classroom, for some reason, they are used with decreasing frequency as students get older. Upper elementary teachers seem to rarely use manipulatives in the classroom, instead relying on lectures textbooks or paper and pencil work to drive their instruction.

Many experts suggest that math performance could be increased in older students by the use of math manipulatives in the classroom, and that students all the way into high school could benefit from this type of instruction. Using math manipulatives in the classroom allows students of all ages to explore abstract concepts from a concrete standpoint, giving them deep understanding of skills and theories.

A New Focus In Math Instruction

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Additionally, the focus of mathematics understanding is rapidly changing to one where students are asked to become flexible thinkers and problem solvers. Students are now being asked to apply their knowledge to a variety of situations, and to illustrate their thinking through words and pictures. This is a far cry from the days when students were simply evaluated on whether their answer was correct or incorrect on paper and pencil tasks. Manipulatives are a perfect fit for this new type of task where students need to do more than simply memorize formulas and regurgitate seemingly arbitrary rules.

When students learn by rote memorization, they often do not truly “own” their knowledge, but can simply remember a set of formulas that they can spit out for tests or other paper and pencil tasks. They may not, however, be able to adapt their knowledge for use in a different but similar situation. When students learn through hands-on experiences, they have the chance to truly learn about these abstract concepts and see how they apply to real objects. These tools allow students to explore materials and create their own meaning in a way that makes sense to them.

It is much easier for a student to explain their thinking about a concept on an assignment, or standardized test, if they truly understand, and this sort of testing is becoming the new norm.

Start with the Concrete

When introducing any new concept, teachers will get the best results if they begin with something concrete. After students have the opportunity to experiment with concrete materials, they will then be ready to move to a semi-concrete level where they can model the same concept with pictures or words. After students have truly become active participants in their own learning, they are then much more likely to master the abstract concept, where they are using numbers to solve problems.

One of the simplest ways for teachers to apply this theory is by the use of manipulatives. These tools allow students to explore using multiple senses, which increases the likelihood of the learning becoming permanent. It gives meaning to an abstract idea by exploration of real objects.

Instructor Comfort Level

While many adults are comfortable using math manipulatives with younger children, they can often be uncomfortable using them with older children. They see these as toys instead of tools and think that they are not appropriate for use while children in the middle grades and beyond.

A shift in philosophy is in order and there are many supports available to help teachers and parents learn to use hands-on tools with older children. If you find that you are at a loss for where to begin using these types of materials with your older student, there are workshops and on-line resources that will provide you with guidance about where to start.

Hands-on educational manipulatives are a perfect way to get older students more interested in work that they consider to be “dry” which is often how they see math, as well as providing them with the chance to truly understand difficult concepts.

Uses of Manipulatives With Older Students

While younger students may use manipulatives to understand basic concepts like counting, addition and subtraction, older students may be well served using them to understand more difficult theories and skills.

When young children are learning the idea of addition, it is an abstract idea to them. After they understand the concept, often through the use of manipulatives, it becomes concrete. The same is true with older children and more difficult concepts.

As children progress through the grades, teachers can use manipulatives to introduce students to concepts like place value, fractions, and geometry. By exploring these abstract concepts in a hands-on way, they can become concrete for students.

The Spielgaben

The Spielgaben, and other educational toys, can be used to make discoveries about just these types of skills. For instance, students can examine the relationship between diameter and circumference using real circles instead of paper and pencil drawings. Students can use pieces of the kit to create angles which they can manipulate. They can examine the relationship between points, lines, angles, two and three dimensional objects.

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Take Advantage of the Benefits

When providing students with these types of materials, teachers can truly give students the opportunity to create their own understanding by the use of leading questions. Asking students “how” and “why” questions will challenge them to look for answers in new ways, which will lead to greater comprehension of concepts.

Many studies have been completed on the use of manipulatives with older children, and they regularly report an increase in not only students’ level of understanding, but also in their attitudes about math in general. Students whose instructors give them the chance to explore concepts in a hands on way, play games with manipulatives, and participate in problem solving activities using tools report that they enjoy math more, understand it better, and feel more empowered to take control of their own learning.

As adults, we solve problems in a variety of ways after finding the methods that work best for us. Shouldn’t we give our students the opportunities to do this as well? Providing them with hands-on manipulatives will give them the opportunity to become true mathematicians.