How to choose a toy for your baby, tips for choosing and reviews


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Development

Perception – the same type of figures of different sizes (nesting dolls, cubes).

  • Sound – squeakers, rattles, musical toys.
  • Tactile – game centers, pyramids, sorters.
  • color – multi-colored cubes, pyramids.

Visual-figurative thinking – cubes with composite pictures, mosaics, pencils, plasticine, paints.

Boolean thinking – board games, puzzles.

Physical development – balls, skittles, hoops.

Numbers, check – pyramids and cubes with numbers, soft books.

Letters – sorters and cubes with letters, books.

Kind

Educational toys can be divided into several categories.

Interactive – react to the actions of the child and respond to him with their actions (“talk”, play a melody, move). Such toys recreate “real life” and develop a normal perception of the world in the baby.

Puzzles – folding pictures from small fragments of a picture: develop logic, fine motor skills, imagination.

Sorters – sets of items that need to be sorted according to certain characteristics (shape, color, size). These include nesting dolls, pyramids, cubes. Sorters develop logic, help to learn numbers, distinguish colors.

Puzzle – games that pose a difficult task for the child, the solution of which requires quick wits. Develop logic, imagination.

Constructors – sets of parts and connecting elements from which various structures are assembled. They develop fantasy, imagination and motor skills.

Desktop games – based on the imitation of professional activities of adults (role-playing games, “doctor”, “kitchen” sets), as well as sports games (table football, hockey). Help the baby to explore the world and develop his imagination.

cubes – “building material”, from which the baby builds towers, houses, buildings. Develop motor skills, and also help to learn letters (cubes with letters).

Pyramids – sets of elements (rings, holder), which, when properly assembled, make up a pyramid. Develop fine motor skills, coordination of movements of both hands.

Rolls – toys on wheels that the baby carries with him (on a string) or pushes in front of him (with a special handle). Wheelchairs have the appearance of animals or vehicles. Develop fine motor skills and spatial imagination.

There are also toys for the sandbox, for bathing, squeakers, balls, knockers and others.

Age

The packaging of the toy must indicate the minimum age of the child, which is associated with its functionality and safety.

To 6 months – the child develops orienting behavior and coordination of movements. Toys that are hung over the crib (carousel module made of plastic mirrors and toys), sounding plastic rattles, rubber squeaker toys are suitable. The main property of such toys is external attractiveness (auditory, visual, tactile).

Important: Toddler toys should have smooth edges, and their coloring should be resistant to saliva and wet processing. Pay attention to the fact that the toy is solid, without easily detachable parts. It is advisable to purchase toys of bright colors from non-toxic materials.

At this age, it is not recommended to offer the baby soft (they cannot be washed) and metal (may cause injury) toys.

6 months-1 year The child learns to interact with the outside world. It has an effect on the toy and gets a certain result. The best option for this age is plastic baby dolls, balls, cubes, cars, books with colorful pictures.

1-1.5 years – soft toys, large cars, home sports equipment, simple designers, toy tools, moving toys are suitable.

1.5-2 years – the child performs actions aimed at giving objects a certain position in space. For this, pyramids, nesting dolls, cubes, toys that can be assembled and disassembled are suitable.

2-4 years – the kid gets acquainted with the professions of adults, masters simple role-playing games. A good option is a set for the “doctor”, children’s dishes, a garage with cars. The attention of the baby is attracted by toy animals, dolls, baby dolls, wheelchairs, doll houses. He also masters tools – shovels, spoons, cups, scoops, pencils.

Important: An interesting solution would be books with different pages to the touch. This will help the child to get acquainted with different textures of materials.

4-5 years – the best period for the development of creativity. The child will need pencils, paints, crayons, felt-tip pens, plasticine. Puzzles and constructors that develop thinking will be appropriate. The child continues to be interested in story games, so toy sets, such as the “repair shop”, are relevant.

Important: first, the child must learn to build structures from wooden or plastic cubes, and then move on to working with designers, for example, Lego. Building with blocks develops motor skills and a sense of the weight ratio of parts. Rigid fastening of parts will not give such an opportunity.

From 5 years – the period of preparation for school. In this case, the best option would be books, educational games, radio-controlled cars (for boys), doll sets with clothes (for girls). The emphasis is on the realism of toys – it is important for the child that the model matches the original.

Important: age recommendations do not always correspond to the level of development of the baby. So watch your child.

materials

Most toys are made from rubber, synthetic fabrics, metal and plastics. The safest materials tree, wool, natural fabrics. Models made of low-quality materials can cause poisoning and allergies in children. The toy should not have an unpleasant pungent odor, otherwise it may indicate a high content of the hazardous substance phenol.

Highly harmful material is PVC, as it releases phenol. Products made from this material are marked with a triangle with arrows and the number “3”. Note that PVC toys are soft and warm, while those made of higher quality plastic are hard and cold.

Another dangerous material is plastisol (soft rubber). It is often used for the manufacture of machine guns, pistols, binoculars. Plastisol does not have moisture resistance and heat resistance, so it can easily enter the child’s body through saliva.

Important: it is worth paying attention to the coating of the toy (how safe paints and varnishes are).

Quality

Often the quality of a toy can be determined by simply holding it in your hands (if possible). A soft toy, for example, must have a strong connection between the fur and the base, strong seams so that the stuffing does not come out. For other toys, the parts should be well fixed.

Cheap toys are usually of poor quality. However, a high price does not always guarantee proper quality. It is worth choosing toys of famous brands in specialized stores. Before buying, be sure to check the quality certificates for the goods, and also save the receipt, without which it will be impossible to return or replace the toy.

ImportantA: The voltage in the electric toy should not exceed 12 volts. For musical toys, the maximum sound level should be no more than 65 decibels, since high volume can frighten the child and even damage his hearing.

Size and weight

The size and weight of the toy depend on the age of the baby and are indicated on the packaging. It is not advisable for children under 3 years old to buy toys consisting of small parts, as they can enter the respiratory tract or stomach through the mouth. The weight of a toy for a child under 7 years old should not exceed 400 grams, otherwise injury may result if it falls.

Council

  • It should be noted that a smaller number of toys develops the imagination better than a very large one. In this case, the child comes up with new games with existing toys.
  • The toy should please the baby, not scare. Therefore, do not buy scary monsters, monsters or “evil” cartoon characters for your child.
  • The instructions should indicate how to care for the toy (especially for soft toys), recommendations for assembly (if necessary) and its safe use.
  • In order for a child to learn to adequately perceive the world, it is better to wait with the purchase of “mutant” toys (for example, purple elephants).
  • It is not recommended to purchase toys painted in red and black colors, as they negatively affect the psyche of especially sensitive children. It is better to opt for a multi-colored toy – it will train your eyesight and help your baby learn colors.
  • Do not buy a toy “for growth”, because the child wants to play right away.
  • It is not recommended to wash soft toys as they will lose their appearance. However, remember that soft and fluffy toys accumulate dust, and therefore dust mites that can cause allergies.

Manufacturer

Conventionally, according to the cost, toys for babies can be divided into three groups:

  • the cheapest: local, Chinese, Turkish and some European brands (Alexis, Baby Team, Bambi, Bino, Canpol babies, Ecoiffier, Miniland, Na-Na, Pilsan, Ranok-Creative, Simba, Tomy, Wader, Polissya, TechnoK). These toys will not be worse than the more expensive ones, and may be simpler. However, any cubes or sorters will equally affect the development of the child;
  • average cost (Keenway, Kiddieland, Ks Kids, Little Tikes, Playgro, Smoby, Spin Master) – toys for slightly older children. They will be richer in functionality, interesting in design. In terms of strength and reliability, they do not differ much from the first group;
  • the most expensive toys from European and American manufacturers (Bright Starts, Chicco, Fisher-Price, Hape, Hasbro, IKEA, Melissa & Doug). The price is high in some places due to the popularity of the brand, in some places due to imports. Toys are certainly high quality and interesting – children are usually delighted with them.

Summing up, it is worth noting: the simpler the toy is for its intended purpose, the less attention should be paid to the brand. The simplest pyramids can be chosen among cheap Ukrainian toys. But with the increase in the complexity of the model, as well as the age of the child, you should not save money: the child should like the toy, and also be useful to him.

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