The Benefits of Educational Toys and Where to Buy Educational Toys and Games Online in Australia
Learning through play is a vital part of every child’s development. When you provide your child with plenty of playtime and a range of educational toys, you give them the opportunity to release excess energy and learn more about themselves and the world around them – even during infancy. Early in development, children’s minds expand and take in new knowledge easily just by looking at their surroundings. Educational toys help children learn the skills they need in several ways:
- Physical development:
- Sensory skills: Hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, sense are the primary and most powerful brain stimulators for all kids.
- Fine Motor Skills development: evolving the small muscles in the hand, wrist and fingers to perform a number of small actions like grasping, opening and closing, holding things all the way to writing, using scissors, buttoning, tying shoe laces and so on.
- Gross Motor skills development: developing the large muscles of the body to perform large movement like crawling, running, throwing, kicking, cycling etc. Huge physical milestones occur in the early years—and motor skills keep getting refined as your child grows.
- Cognitive development:
- Curiosity and Discovery: Children need to explore to learn and figure out who they are.
- Problem solving: Educational toys can help children start to understand different ways of looking at problems and providing solutions.
- Imagination and Creativity: We all have different ways of viewing things and embracing this difference is very important. Children learn so much about themselves when tapping into their imagination.
- Social and Emotional Development:
- Listening: Babies can hear when they are in the womb. Developing listening skills is a very important part of a child's life.
- Self-expression and Confidence: Feeling comfortable about yourself and expressing your feelings are vital skill that are practiced when children play.
- Security and Happiness: Children who play are more likely to be happy. We all want our children to form positive relationships in their early years and throughout their entire life.
As early as the first month of life, children can benefit from educational toys in Australia. Here are some tips for choosing toys based on age range and their benefits.
1 to 12 months
During your baby’s first few months, choose mobiles, infant play gyms, and tactile toys to facilitate learning as your child focuses on sensory play. As your baby grows more active, introduce stackers, shape sorters, Bat-at floor toys, action-reaction toys, blocks, push-pull toys, surprise pop-up toys and other problem-solving toys. These toys help children learn about cause and effect and help them build confidence as they tackle new skills.
12 to 24 months
As your child passes the one-year milestone, they become more fascinated with cause and effect and will love any toy that responds to his actions and makes use of newly acquired motor skills.
Here are a few more toys at your aid:
- At this age some of the basic toys are, ride-on toys, push cars, and walkers that help develop coordination and balance and encourage curiosity.
- Playing with musical toys and basic instruments and listening to songs, rhymes, and small stories help increase concentration and curiosity.
- Books with simple illustrations and photographs of real objects. Never underestimate the importance of books in a child’s development. Special quiet time set aside to read to your child has endless benefits. Children start to understand the rhythm of speech, develop literacy, imagination and vocabulary.
- First step to Art: wide non-toxic washable markers, crayons, and large paper. This fosters their fine motor skills.
- Children at this age must be encouraged to begin role-playing. Toys for pretend play include toy phones, dolls and tea sets, baby carriages and prams/strollers, farms, dress-up, puppets, stuffed toys, plastic animals, and plastic/wooden vehicles
- Toys for gross motor skills: building with wooden/cardboard blocks, large pegboards, pop-up toys, toys with parts that do things (dials, switches, knobs, lids), sorting and nesting toys and balls. Puzzles play a large part in developing colour and shape recognition and problem solving
2 - 4 years
Older toddlers and pre-schoolers are ready for toys that involve physical play such as basketball hoops and tricycles. They can also enhance their cognitive development with sensory toys such as kinetic sand and art supplies. “See and say” books and games are great because they help foster early literacy skills.
Below are a few of our education toys that are particularly beneficial to children of this age group.
- Problem solving toys: wooden puzzles (with 4 to 12 pieces), blocks that snap together, sorting toys by size, shape, colour, sound, and things with hooks, buttons, buckles, snaps, and lock-unlock toys.
- Pretend play: child-sized furniture (kitchen sets, chairs, play food), dress-up clothes, dolls with accessories, mechanic tools, doctor set and puppets. Dressing and undressing a doll helps improve fine motor skills.
- Construction and Building sets: wooden blocks, gears, wedgits, smaller transportation toys and construction sets. These help improve your child’s fine motor skills.
- Sensorial Play: sand and water play toys with shovel and pail, slime, modelling clay and art and craft. Encourage hands on sensory art and craft play. Finger painting, drawing and painting with large crayons, paint brushes and markers (non-toxic washable), coloured construction paper, toddler-sized scissors with blunt tips, glue, chalkboard with large chalks.
- Speech and language development: Reading books helps your child foster concentration, empathy, imagination and grasp different concepts and topics. It also helps build a bond between you and your child.
- Music and instruments: Toddlers start to dance, jump, clap and spin with music so play music and encourage playing with basic musical instruments through music maker sets.
- Physical development: Children in this age group can manipulate small objects and start to build their large and small muscles. Kicking and throwing a ball, ride-on equipment and tricycles for 3+, tunnels, low climbers, pounding and hammering toys all help boost this.
Where to buy educational toys online in Australia
When you want to buy educational toys, toys2learn can help. Our focus is on learning toys for children, includingthose with special needs. To prepare children for bright futures and allow them to live up to their full potential, buy educational games and toys from toys2learn and watch your child blossom intellectually, socially, and developmentally. We can handle small or large orders – even bulk orders for school supplying.
We have an online store as well as a Marryatville, SA location to make it as easy as possible to find the right toys for your child. We offer an extensive range of toys and games for a variety of age groups to give your child the best possible head-start. Have a look at our range of learning toys and see how educational play can make your child’s life easier. Contact toys2learn today to learn more.