What Christmas to US, Diwali is for India.
This is the most favorite time of the year for many of us. Diwali brings in a flood of emotions and childhood memories for me. Each year my brother and I would look forward to Diwali and the loot of gifts we would receive from our parents and grandparents. It was exhilarating for us and keeping up with the anticipation was the toughest part!
The tradition of gifts continues. Children always have a long list of things they want and parents are more than eager to fulfill their child’s dream. More than often our wish list for our children is all about the fanciest outfit, expensive outings, lots of sugar-loaded candies and chocolates or some branded fancy toys that ‘we’ have been saving for the longest.
It’s almost a parents mission to get our child the very best!
Even when it comes to gifting, adults often look at things of social value more than practical/educational value. In today’s modern time many of us buy gifts for friends and their children to keep up a social status. Often bothered by social pressure – “does this show a value that I did spend a huge amount on it?” But do these gifts really bring joy and an emotion?
I for one, always look for practical gifts for everyone. A gift that becomes a part of the receiver’s life and something they would remember me and be thankful for. Plus the fact that I didn’t waste my money on a useless gift is the best satisfaction!
Especially for children, the best gift we can give them is a way to learn and grow. Toys are of course every child’s friend. If given an opportunity children can learn and grow through play. Early learning toys can lay the foundation of the discovery that fun and education can go hand in hand.
If you understand the importance of toys, you will realize how toys impact a child’s physical and mental skills, cognitive behavior and stimulate creativity. A correct choice of a toy can not only provide entertainment but also fulfill an educational role. Educational toys can support the fine and gross motor skills, cognitive development, improve problem-solving skills and aids in attention span which forms the very basis of early education.
How to select the best educational toy?
The biggest dilemma is what to look for in a toy? How do you know if a toy is going to support early childhood learning and education? Listed here are some basic attributes that a good early learning educational toy will possess
- The toy must be flexible or versatile and the child should be able to use it in various ways to support his/her creativity
- The best toys always aid learning – in one way or the other
- The toys/materials must be appealing and interesting enough for a child and offer several opportunities for success.
- Look for toys that are durable. It should be well constructed, shatterproof and if required strong enough to hold the child’s weight
- A good toy will have rounded corners, smooth surface with no exposed nails or projectiles and absolutely never requiring a battery.
- Most importantly the varnish /paints and finishing must be non-toxic and must meet all safety standards
- Of course, it should withstand repeated cleaning and washing.
Where to buy the perfect educational toy this Diwali?
Let me introduce you to Skola. Inspired by the Montessori principles of learning they have researched and developed some very apt and wonderful toys for the age 1-8. This was one of the main reasons I was attracted by their toys. You can also look for the toys based on a learning journey say whether you want to help your child with language, improve gross motor skills or even cognition.
Do visit their website to enjoy a plethora of educational toy which makes a perfect gift for children this Diwali! More about Skola and their toys coming up in my next post.
Image source – www.pixaby.com