Sep 22 , 2020
Toys are an essential part of childhood. It is hard to picture a happy childhood without any form of toys.
In this day and age there are a variety of toys out there. This can be overwhelming for many parents who struggle to find the right toy. “Will my kids like it? Is it safe? Will it teach them something? Will it last? Will this break easily?” are probably some of the questions running through their minds when choosing a toy.
There are many things that parents should consider when buying toys as toys are not just for fun or passing time. Playing is an essential activity for kids up to the age of 6. It allows them to practice creativity as well as pick up many different skills that they will use throughout their lives. It may even end up influencing and shaping their personalities.
So what is the right toy? It is preferably one that is cheap, safe, durable as well as develops mental and physical skills.
Here are 9 reasons why wooden toys are the right toy.1. Environmentally friendly
These days, a lot of us are becoming more conscious of our impact on the environment. Sustainability is a movement that has been picking up heat and a lot of individuals and companies are trying to do their part to help the environment.
Wooden toys are substantially more environmentally friendly than plastic toys. Wooden toys are biodegradable and require lesser resources to be recycled. Studies have shown that out of the 79% of plastic that is being thrown away, only 9% is being recycled.
Plastic toys are made up of many different plastics and are usually not made with recycling in mind. Therefore as soon as a plastic toy is opened, it is already destined to be in landfills. Only a handful of companies that produce plastic toys are moving to make their products more sustainable.
Furthermore, there are many companies who manufacture wooden toys from sustainably sourced wood. If the toys are handcrafted, they do not get any more environmentally friendly than that. As an individual trying to do our part for the environment, wooden toys are the way to go.
2. They are safe
One of the defining traits of kids is that they are carefree and curious. Kids love exploring things and sometimes that means putting them in their mouth. Wooden toys are made from organic materials and do not contain harsh chemicals. It is also free from chemicals like PVC, BPA and other chemicals that can be found in plastic.
Most paint used on the toys are also free from harsh chemicals and are not detrimental to the health of young kids. Parents can be rest assured even if their kids end up chewing the toys.
Furthermore, wooden toys are sturdy and unlikely to break so they will not leave sharp edges lying around. The possibility of the toys breaking while your child is playing with it is eliminated.
3. Timeless and durable
Toys are undoubtedly misused a lot. From being thrown around, chewed on, or forgotten under the sun/rain, they go through alot. These conditions happen to shorten the lifespan of many plastic toys. However, they have little to no effect on wooden toys.
Wooden toys are believed to be around since the stone ages. It still manages to captivate and amuse kids till this age. With its simplicity, it is a timeless piece that never goes out of style. Good thing that they are durable enough to be passed down from one generation to the next for endless fun and learning.
After careful considerations, wooden toys are cheaper in the long run. While the upfront cost may be larger than plastic toys,the lifespan of wooden toys are notably longer. As children grow, they will find different ways to use the toys to build up their imagination, solve problems, or develop their motor skills.
With wooden toys, you no longer have to keep buying the same toys because it breaks or having to replace the batteries of the toys. It does not require any maintenance either which can save you time and money. Therefore wooden toys are a good investment, especially if you have more than one kid.
5. Fires up the imagination
With technology, toys have advanced a lot. They now have voice integrated systems, digital scenes and many more functions. But sometimes less is more. Wooden toys are simple and there are no steps or instructions a kid has to follow. This helps to keep their minds clear and does not limit or box their imagination up.
Therefore your child is in control and can let their imaginations run wild. They can use their reasoning skills to build up scenarios and practice their problem solving skills. Roleplaying and imaginative play aids in their emotional, social, communication skills, cognitive thinking and even gives a boost in confidence.
6. Promotes social interaction
When kids are engaged in roleplay or imaginative play, they often like to bring others into their world. Interactive toys usually encourage solo play as kids are being engaged by the toy itself so they do not crave for interaction.
Wooden toys on the other hand do not come with interactive features like light or sound so kids will try to find others to interact with. By playing with others, a child learns to reason, express their thoughts, share, corporate as well as collaborate. They also learn to build new relationships and grow empathy.
7. Motor Skills
Unlike plastic toys, many wooden toys have a bit of weight on it. The added weight causes kids to be more aware of what they are doing. The weight helps kids to better feel their movements as they develop their movements and muscles.
Wooden toys are specially designed to develop their gripping and handling abilities. Pinching, lifting or balancing wooden pieces exercises the nervous system as well as develops part of the brain that is responsible for coordination and dexterity. Therefore wooden toys help kids to prepare for more complex tasks later on like gripping pencils or other complex movements.
8. Sensory Development
Children love to experience different weights and textures. Plastic doesn’t give off the same feeling and sensory experience to a child as a wooden toy does. The organic experience of touching, sensing the surface, shape, volume, and weight of the wooden toys develops complex neurological connections in the child’s brain and enhances their memory.
When exploring the world through a sense of touch, kids become adept at recognising elements like: hot or cold, wet or dry, smooth or rough, ect. This is especially beneficial for younger children, who discover and explore the world not only through touch and sight but also through smell and putting things in their mouths. A connection to nature through contact with wood can also improve mental and physical well being.
9. Calming/ Reduces Anxiety
Research has shown that children experience a more tranquil and advantageous quality play through wooden toys than from any other material. As mentioned, wooden toys do not have elements like sound or lighting. Furthermore, in comparison to plastic toys, the colours on wooden toys are not as bright or stark. Therefore wooden toys do not overstimulate, stress or tire out a kid. With the non-intrusive and minimalist nature of wooden toys, they help to calm, reduce anxiety and offer less distraction when your child is performing an activity.