Guidelines for buying toys
Toys are an essential element in the development of the child, both for its playful value and for the pedagogical value. On the one hand, they are a tool that helps them to entertain and focus attention, and, on the other hand, teaches them to develop skills and to make contact with the world around them. Therefore, it is important that parents know these guidelines for buying toys for your children.
10 tips to buy toys
1. Think before you buy. What toy to buy is not a decision that parents can make quickly and without prior reflection. Getting carried away by fashions or by the rush can sometimes lead parents to buy an inappropriate toy for their child, either because it will not contribute anything or because it really does not adapt to the son's personality, his tastes or his hobbies
2. Ask your child what he likes. In order for the choice of a toy to be the right one, it is necessary to know your child first. That means knowing what he likes and what kind of toy is the one that best suits his way of being. However, this does not mean that you always have to buy everything you ask for. On many occasions, influenced by television, they will want to have toys that are harmful to them. In that case, parents must have a critical sense to find the balance between what their children like and what they want to play with.
3. Check that it is a safe toy. It is important to verify that the toys you are going to buy comply with the safety regulations. Above all, look at the CE symbol, a sign in which the manufacturer tells you that the toy meets the safety requirements of current legislation, and in turn indicates the age for which the manufacturer considers that toy is appropriate .
4. Take into account the age of your child. Although there are toys that can be the dream of many adults, when buying one, we must bear in mind that the one who will play with him is your son. Therefore, in addition to your tastes, you have to take into account the suitability of that toy at your age, keeping in mind that, for each age, there is always a suitable toy, especially in the case of the youngest ones:
- Baby toys from 0 to 6 months
- Toys for children from 6 to 12 months
- Toys for children from 12 to 18 months
- Toys for children from 18 to 24 months
5. Choose a toy with values. A toy not only has a playful value but also has a pedagogical value. In this sense, it is important to bear in mind that a toy can teach your child the good and the bad. Currently, many toys are the representation of violent and sexist attitudes and vehicles of a series of counter-values that as parents we must avoid. The priority should be to find, in some way, an educational toy that manages to convey to your child a series of values.
6. Do not buy many toys at once or the most expensive toy. Buying excessive toys is sometimes going to translate into a contempt on the part of your child, who will not learn to value what he has. In this sense, having many toys does not mean that you are going to play more but that you will value less the meaning of each of them. Similarly, buying your child the most expensive toy is not going to be synonymous with success. On many occasions, children, who do not understand expensive and cheap but fun, will enjoy what they like, not what has cost you the most.
7. Look for active toys. Passivity is one of the risks of today's games. Consoles or computer games, among others, can cause children to adopt a passive attitude, accustomed to spending many hours without moving in front of a screen. On the contrary, active toys improve the physical activity of the child, helping him to develop muscles (balls, bicycles, skates) as well as visual and manual coordination and dexterity (building blocks or puzzles etc.). Therefore, it is always necessary that you look for toys that contribute to enhance the active play of your child.
8. Opt for a creative toy. The possibility of developing creativity is a requirement that all toys should fulfill. Crafts or puppets are some of those creative toys that will allow your child to develop their creativity and initiative while stimulating their imagination. If the toys do not allow your child to have a margin to create, he will not be able to develop his capacity to look for solutions or to contribute new ideas.
9. Find a toy that promotes your social skills. Parents should teach their children how to relate. The choice of a successful toy also has an important role in this function. For this, it is necessary that, when you go to buy a toy, choose one that promotes social skills and artistic development of your child. It will be a good way to start learning to relate to those people and things that surround you. Cooperative games, for example, will help you achieve this challenge.
10. Check that your child learns something. Some toys, directly, can help your child learn to read or write, while others, indirectly can transmit some value or enrich him in some way. The most important thing is that you look for the toys to have an educational aspect, something from which your child can learn specific values, knowledge or skills. Construction games, puzzles or board games can be a good example of this.
Patricia Núñez de Arenas