As parents, we always want to choose the best, most educational toys for our kids. With such a vast selection available these days, it is not always easy to find a great toy or costume like a Harry Potter costume. Here, we look at 7 of the best educational toys for toddlers and young children, perfect for helping development, or even for including as part of an early home-schooling curriculum.
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1. Classic Building Blocks
Every child should own a set of building blocks – they are fun and can be used for so many different purposes. They can help children learn to count and recognize colors, as well as the more obvious benefits such as helping hand eye coordination, imagination and focus.
2. Jigsaw Puzzles
Jigsaw puzzles are great learning tools and are also a lot of fun. They come in all different patterns, so you are sure to find something to interest your toddler. Some can also help with colors, letters and numbers. Toddler jigsaw puzzles are a great way for parents and children to spend quality time together, learning and having fun.
3. Dress Up Costumes
Role playing is a great way for kids to use their imagination and develop their social skill and cognitive functions . There are a range of different outfits to choose from, so your child can be a doctor one minute then a hairdresser the next! Dressing up can help children learn to empathize with others’ feelings, as they think about how someone would feel and act in a particular situation.
4. Kids Tablet
Whilst many parents want to limit their child’s screen time, there are many ‘toy’ tablets which are designed to be educational whilst still allowing your child to feel like they are playing with a gadget. Brands such as VTech and LeapFrog have some great offerings, which can teach toddlers a range of valuable skills such as early reading skills, math and numbers and many more.
Don’t forget that there are so many educational programs available through your child’s device, like learning videos for babies and toddlers.
- Writing & Drawing Toys
Toys which help children learn to write are valuable additions to your toy box. The VTech Write and Learn Creative Center is a great toy, which shows children how to write different letters using an animated screen. The toy can also be customized with your child’s name, so they can learn how to write and spell it. Toddlers can get creative and draw on the board too, so it is the ideal toy for promoting creativity. The toy is great for travel, and is sure to keep kids entertained for a while on a long car journey. You can always use traditional methods of drawing and writing, from lined paper to coloring pages.
- Cash Register
A toy cash register is great for teaching toddlers about money, as well as helping counting skills. It’s also great for the imagination – the perfect addition to any pretend restaurant! Cash register toys usually feature calculators so this is great for helping kids learn to perform basic math operations. Some also have scanners and microphones which are great for role playing and make the toy a lot more fun to use.
- Toy Microscope
A kids’ microscope is a great way to get little ones interested in science. They will love seeing what everyday objects look like close up. The advantage of choosing a kids’ toy microscope over a ‘real’ microscope is the kids ones tend to have large, easy to use controls and they are a lot more durable if they are dropped or bumped – which is important with a young child around!