important to children. It is the way they practice growing up. Toys are
the tools children use in play. Toys can be purchased, or they may be as
simple as kitchen pan lids or paper sack puppets. Anything children can
play with safely can be a toy. In fact, you may have watched infants
open presents and noticed that they spent more time playing with the
ribbon and wrapping than with the toy inside.
Try to remember two or three of your own favourite toys when you were
still a child. Were they ones you created yourself or ones someone made
Toys can be divided into several groups, depending on the part of the child it helps to develop.
- Physical or muscle development Toys: Wagons, bikes, boxes, puzzles, blocks, brooms, and shovels.
- Sensory (touch, sight, sound, taste, smell) development Toys: Water toys, musical instruments, bubbles, play dough, and sand toys.
- Make-believe and social development Toys: Dolls, dress-up clothes, cars, trucks, games, and books.
- Creative and intellectual development Toys: Clay, crayons, paints, books, paper, and scissors.
Sometimes toys fit into more than one category. A wagon can help
develop children’s muscles and also be used as the “ambulance” in a
hospital game. Children need a balance of toys from each of these groups
to ensure their whole development.