Many people are of the notion that toys are nothing but paltry things which had been invented for one sole purposekeep the child occupied when mommy and daddy are doing important things. Times are changing and this conception is being proven wrong. The motor toys and the institution toys (in Danish institutionslegetj) today, for example, actually help a child learn vital skills and hone them continuously in the course of playso one actually learns while having fun!
How do toys help children learn?
Toys have been found to trigger the creative process in childrens minds. They give them the scope to observe and infer how real objects behave in the real world. The toys, especially institution toys, are made vivid and colorful. The color directly stimulates the childs thinking process. Some colors are even known to excite. Other colors have been known to help the child form associations of the color to real everyday objects. The size and feel of the toy also provides a certain stimulus. The child learns various things like patterns, spatial relations, shapes etc. Toys, especially motor toys (in Danish motorisk legetj), have been known to enhance hand eye coordination, motor skills, patience, creativity, imagination and even basic numerical and grammar skills. The right puzzles and toys can really help children with elementary math and language skills.
Bridging the Real and the Imagined
You might have noticed that when children play with dolls and/or stuffed animals they take them to be real. Toys that make sounds, when a special part of their body is touched, are extremely enjoyable for children. Girls imagine their toy ovens baking cookies or their doll houses to be their very own home. Boys imagine racing with their toy cars or their toy trucks hauling heavy construction equipment. This is a subconscious development of their imagination and creative thinking process. The toys become the bridges between their reality and the adult reality. It is basically a fantasy borne out of reality. Children are not as practical as adults and take their toys to be as functional as their real life counterparts.
Children, one must know, are curious by nature. They cannot help it. Toys that interest and appeal to their curiosity are the most effective in the learning process. So go out there or get online and buy some toys! You will find great deals on learning toys and other types of toys in online stores.