No matter how long ago you welcomed your little bundle of joy into the world, chances are, you’ve given more than a bit of thought to their entertainment and development. The first few years of a child’s life are when their brains grow and develop the most, so purchasing baby toys to capitalize on that period can give them a leg up over their peers.
However, when you buy toys for your baby, not just any toy will do the trick. There are many concerns you need to keep in mind before bringing them home. Here are 7 factors that you should keep in mind when shopping for toys for your baby.
Let’s face it: Kids, especially babies and toddlers, can get rough with their toys. Between bashing the toys against the ground, biting into them with developing teeth, squeezing them with all their body strength, and dragging them across the floor, young children can dole out a lot of abuse. All without realizing the harm they cause.
So, when purchasing baby toys, you need to keep an eye on durability. That’s one of the reasons (among many) why it might not be the greatest idea to let your child use your tablet.
2. Educational Potential
When looking at the different types of toys for your baby, you should always keep an eye out for educational potential. Children’s brains develop more rapidly during the first few years than in any other, so you must strike while the iron is hot. Look for toys that can teach them shapes, colors, letters, and numbers. Get them on a solid foundation before they begin attending school.
Educational toys for babies can include simple things like blocks, or more complex tools like the old Speak-N-Spell or specially programmed learning tablets. However, as mentioned above, you should take care when entrusting a toddler with a tablet of any kind. Even one intended for children can break when struck with enough force.
3. Creative Applications
Young children have almost boundless reservoirs of creativity. There are few things that kids love more than drawing and playing pretend. So, try to look for baby toy brands that can nurture or boost your young thinker’s creativity.
You should also let your kids experiment with their toys and find new ways to play with them. It’s too easy to get locked into the way you’re “supposed to” play with the toys. However, they don’t have to stick to the instruction manuals to have a great time with you.
It’s easy to get caught up in fiscal concerns when buying toys online. However, you should always remain focused on the physical concerns of the toys that you buy for your baby. Not all baby toy brands are created equal in terms of safety.
First and foremost, you need to look out for any potential choking hazards present in the toy. Then, check the materials and the manufacturing location. If there’s even a hint of a toxic material present, you need to find an alternative toy.
5. Adaptability With Age
One key element to purchasing baby toys that people often neglect is the need for them to adapt and grow with the child themselves. While almost every child had a comforting plush at some point, most stopped playing with their baby toys after the age of five or six.
No matter how much your kid begs, pleads, and throws a tantrum, you don’t need to get them the latest, most trendy toy. In most cases, your toddler will play with it once or twice, then forget it exists. Look instead to the toys they seem to enjoy the most, and buy toys in a similar vein that can grow up with them.
6. Encouraging Physical Activity
Childhood obesity is a growing health concern in the United States. It has been for well over thirty years, at this point. And with the average American becoming more and more sedentary with each passing year, it’s crucial to teach kids the value of physical play and exercise.
Video games are fun, but there’s time enough for those once they’re old enough to enjoy them. During these first few years, it’s best to get them up and moving around, so they can toddle under their own power. Consider finding toys like kites and balls, suited for the outdoors. Or else, a toy that requires walking and moving to shut off.
As much as we like baby toys to serve as multi-purpose tools, their utility should not be their primary focus. Ultimately, the goal in purchasing baby toys is to bring comfort and joy to the child in question. The often worn-to-rags plush toy we mentioned above is but one of these.
A well-constructed Beanie Baby can last them through their formative cuddling years and even serve as a source of income years down the line if it’s not too damaged. Especially if it’s one of the most expensive beanie babies on the market.
Physical softness and comfort aside, you should look at the toys that seem to bring your young child the most happiness. Then, buy more like that toy once their old favorite finally wears out.
Need More Tips for Purchasing Baby Toys?
Purchasing baby toys for your little bundle of joy can be a daunting process. You have to balance their safety with their desire for comfort. Their need for education and creativity with their desire for fun and entertainment. All while comparing toy prices, manufacturers, and a host of other information online.
However, you don’t need to navigate this process alone. If you found this article helpful and would like more tips for buying toys online, then why not check out our blog? We update each day with more helpful and informative parenting articles like this one!
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