Preschool is an important time in a child’s social and educational development. Children are like little sponges, and the information that their little brains absorb between the ages of 2 through 5 is essential to their future academic success. He or she will be preparing for kindergarten, and educational toys are increasing in popularity each year. Most of these items are designed to grow with a person’s child, which ensures that they will be played with for a longer period of time. For the preschooler in your life, consider purchasing one of the following items:
Train Sets – Train sets are a children’s toy that has withstood the test of time. They may be remote controlled, like Fisher Price Toys Geotrax, or they may be hand powered, like the plastic or wooden versions of Thomas the Tank Engine. Building the tracks encourages the child to develop their problem solving and logistical skills. Some series, like Thomas the Tank Engine, have accompanying children’s programs and book series that teach values, like cooperation and self esteem.
Toy Dinosaurs and Animals – Dinosaurs encourage children to ask questions about a different period in time, and little boys, especially, love to create prehistoric scenarios. Similarly, children of both sexes will love building their own farms and zoos. Breyer is a well known maker of model horses, but they also have a variety of realistic livestock models. Both types of toys encourage a child’s creativity and imagination.
Interactive Dolls and Animals – These intelligent stuffed animals run the gamut from Sesame Street characters to Rescue Pets. Most have interactive games and DVDs that allow the child and their electronic friend to explore together. In addition to encouraging creativity, these toys can teach lessons in cause and effect situations, as well as the ability to just have fun.
Play Dough – Play Dough is another vintage child’s toy that remains popular decades after its introduction to the general public. With a healthy dose of imagination and encouragement, Play Dough can allow a preschooler to hone their creativity and coordination. Additionally, it is relatively easy to clean up, much to mom and dad’s relief.
Books – Books are an excellent gift idea, because in addition to encouraging a child’s imagination, they encourage a parent and child to spend time together reading. Dr. Suess books and Curious George books remain two of the most popular titles for young children. Pop up books and books that feature different textures on the pages are always able to captivate a child’s interest.