It’s been proven time and time again that learning through play is a crucial part of a child’s development. But like most things in life, not all toys are created equally. While it’s important to allow children to explore different types of toys during their playtime, it’s equally as important to provide them with educational toys that are as fun as they are beneficial to their development.
What Are Educational Toys?
Before we dive into the abundance of benefits children receive when playing with educational toys, you may be wondering what educational toys are. After all, aren’t all toys beneficial for children, as they enhance their imagination and get them moving? Absolutely. However, there are educational toys designed specifically for learning through play, such as puzzles, blocks, shapes, science kits and pretty much everything you would expect to see in a learning center.
The Benefits of Educational Toys
Children are going to play with toys regardless, so it only makes sense to optimize their learning opportunities with educational toys. However, if you’re new to using educational toys as learning tools, you’re likely curious about the type of benefits your little one can receive from this type of learning through play. Well, you’ve come to the right place as we’ve put together a list of our top benefits of using educational toys.
Develop Fine Motor Skills
Children will develop their fine motor skills naturally through play – some faster than others – and that’s completely okay. Educational toys, however, can further develop and enhance these skills, making it easier and more efficient for your little one to make movements using his or her fingers, hands and forearms.
Assist With Eye-Hand Coordination
Once your child has their fine motor skills developed, they begin to strengthen their eye-hand coordination. Educational toys assist with this, as your little one will have to use their eyes and hands to connect different pieces together to complete the puzzle or to build a structure made of blocks. Just think about the first time a child does a puzzle compared to the last time they did one; chances are they originally had difficulties placing the puzzle piece in the appropriate slot, despite seeing exactly where it needs to go. Now, they can easily glide all the pieces in – that’s the power of learning through play with educational toys.
Learn Problem Solving
Educational toys, such as puzzles and building blocks teach children how to problem solve. They learn that if this piece doesn’t fit there, it must be turned or placed somewhere else and if this block keeps falling down, perhaps a different shape or size should be used. These are only two examples of how educational toys teach problem solving.
Encourage Imagination and Creativity
With technology and “screen time” stealing children’s preference for toys, self-gratification and a lack of imagination have followed. When your child can tap on a screen and color the entire picture, they aren’t using their fine motor skills or their creative potential. While there’s no denying that there are some benefits to educational apps on an electronic device, it’s also important to ensure your child has educational toys that allow them to use their hands, eyes and imagination to create something new.
Social Interaction and Communication
Another benefit of educational toys that is often overlooked is what they teach children when being used in a group setting. If every child has their own iPad, they never learn how to share and they certainly don’t learn how to play together. Educational toys assist with social development and communication, as they encourage kids to play together as opposed to against one another on a digital screen.
Optimize your child’s learning opportunities by using educational toys as learning tools. To learn more, subscribe to our newsletter and visit Bevy and Dave for fun and exciting ways your child can be learning through play.