A toy is an object to play with, entertain and learn, usually intended for children. Certain toys are also suitable for domestic animals, especially dogs and cats, and there are even varieties of toys created specifically for them. Toys may be used individually or in combination with others. Certain toys are associated with particular historical periods or cultures, while others appear to have universal popularity. The function of the toy in children is to support the development of multiple aspects of the toy, both physical and psychological. It is through the toy that children explore, discover, learn and interact with multiple objects and problems that are an important part of their proper development as individuals
In general, a toy is intended for recreation, without excluding other functions such as training, learning, development or stimulation of intellectual, psychological, sensory-motor and social interaction, among others. It is in children that the toy is an essential concept and in which it takes its maximum value in the context of human development. The function of the toy in children is to support the development of multiple aspects of it, both physical and psychological. It is through the toy that children explore, discover, learn and interact with multiple objects and problems that form an important part of their proper development as individuals.
It is virtually impossible to determine the origin of toys. Objects found in excavations from periods as old as the Magdalenian and initially catalogued as ritual elements may well be toys, especially when they are small-scale utensils unsuitable for other effective use.
It is also known that in the Roman Empire children had fun with ivory dolls, rattles and horse-drawn carriages with wheels. In the Egypt of the Pharaohs, they also had small statuettes and small animals, and in the pre-Inca era, rag dolls already existed.
In their early days, toys were handcrafted and sometimes even made by children themselves, usually seeking to imitate real-life objects. The industrial revolution turned the manufacturing of these amusement devices upside down and the evolution of technology allowed the creation of objects that were more and more similar to the real ones.
In the second half of the 20th century, the development of electronic technology allowed the invention of increasingly sophisticated devices such as battery-powered and remote-controlled cars or talking dolls. Today there are computerized dolls that can recognize and identify both objects and their owner’s voice and choose from hundreds of pre-programmed phrases to respond.
Toys have always played an important role in children’s lives. They often reflect the culture of the moment and indicate cultural changes and social trends, as can be seen in museums and toy libraries around the world. Although today’s toys seem to be different from those of yesteryear, the purpose of toys has always been the same: to bring joy and pleasure, and to create opportunities for increased learning and development.
Toys add magic and excitement to learning about life, how things work, and how to get along with others. Knowing how to choose toys that encourage healthy play enhances a child’s cognitive, physical and social development. Toys that encourage creativity and imagination in children are usually the ones that are used over and over again.
When choosing a toy for your child, always pay attention to the age for which it is recommended. Look for toys that match the child’s interests and developmental level. The right toy, at the right time, will enrich the child’s play experience and lay the foundation for learning.
Our tips for parents are only suggestions. We also recommend that you consult your health care provider and contact them immediately if your question is urgent or about a medical condition.
Basically, kids don’t need a lot of toys. Having a variety of different types of toys is what matters; toys for active and quiet times, toys to use indoors and outdoors, toys to stimulate the imagination and encourage role-playing (such as tea sets and medical equipment), and toys for manipulative and building activities (such as puzzles and blocks). And sometimes, a new addition can spice up play; for example, a new toy farm animal can rekindle interest and start a new cycle of play. It’s also important to have a place or places to store toys in an orderly fashion; if you can’t do that, there are probably plenty of toys outside for your kids to choose from. Store a few and rotate them from time to time.
Deciding which toys to buy can be an overwhelming experience, especially with all the toys available today. But some parents have a good sense of what their kids will consider fun. Look for quality, take into consideration the toys your kids already have, and choose those that complement and enrich their play. And follow your instincts, because you know your kids best and can decide which toys are best for them and without which they can live. Occasionally, you may find that a toy is not as attractive as you thought. This can be just a matter of time: Try taking it out for now and taking it out another day or week. And every once in a while, look for new and exciting toys to encourage your children to branch out, learn new things and experiment with new ways of playing.
Babies love to play-and few things make them happier than a new toy. Besides entertaining your baby, toys help develop motor and social skills. The following guidelines can help your baby get the most out of a new toy:
It is important to know where your child is in terms of development at a certain age.
Choose toys that match your baby’s learning level. Try to find toys that will challenge him without frustrating him.
Always check the age label on the toy. Labels are based on your child’s physical and mental abilities, play needs, interests and safety. For example, toys with small parts can pose a choking hazard for children under three.
Every day is full of new discoveries for your baby. The first toys and activities should be designed to stimulate the development of your child’s senses.
Toys that can be chewed or that have interesting sights, sounds and textures help your baby explore and learn.
To foster your child’s knowledge of how to make things happen, toys should be easy to activate and encourage interaction with your child, such as a baby gym or activity center.
If he doesn’t show interest in a new toy, he may not be ready for it yet. Remove the new toy and reintroduce it some time later.
Many older family toys no longer meet current safety standards; they may contain lead or potentially harmful parts.
Make sure the toy is a safe size and will not easily disintegrate, posing a choking or cutting hazard.
There is such a wide and varied range of toys on the market that it is very difficult to decide on the most suitable or best one. What should be considered when choosing a toy for a child? GuiaInfantil.com has prepared some tips and suggestions for parents to guide them when choosing and buying toys for children.
1. The toy must be desired by the child.
2. Make it safe. It should be made of materials that will not chip or cut if broken. Colors must be solid and non-toxic. The smaller the child, the bigger the toys should be.
3. We must buy them appropriate to their age, always thinking about the purpose and attitudes they develop in our children.
4. Let’s take into account their personality: a withdrawn child will need socializing games (several players); a hyperactive child will find attention games, artistic games, etc…
5. Keep it simple. This would increase the range of uses that can be made of him, developing his fantasy and his symbolic capacity.
6. Do not buy them to satisfy a momentary whim of the child.
7. Generally they should not be used to reward or punish a child.
8. We must bear in mind that too many toys kill the fantasy and produce boredom. Children need to ask first and foremost.
9. Family members should be instructed not to give away toys indiscriminately.
10. The best toy is not necessarily the most expensive.