The market is INTENSE when it comes to kids products. When preparing for your little bundle of joy, you will immediately be overwhelmed with the long list of items you feel like you need. Your registry goes from 20 to 150 items EASILY.
As your baby ages and you want to get some new toys it is impossible to miss the toy aisles lined with bright and noisy toys. We are battled with what toys our child wants, toys that look fun, and toys that will help them learn. Finding a toy that meets all those needs is harder than it looks.
Since the toy market is saturated with noisy toys that all claim to help your child learn, I really wanted to talk specifically about toys that make noise.
So… Do toys that make noise help my baby learn?
I know you aren't going to like this, since it’ll make picking out toys seem a lot harder. But it's the truth folks. I've spent years learning about child development, specifically cognitive development and here's the truth: your child will learn more from toys that don't make sounds, sing, or have all the bells and whistles.
These toys actually get in the way of real learning because they are so distracting and overstimulating that they interfere with your child's ability to observe and make connections. Instead they are being told what to do with a toy and this can make them dependent on a button or switch to do something instead of their brain making that connection on their own. I want you to watch your child with a toy that makes noise, and a toy that does not. You will notice that their play is structured around the noise.
I know you have experienced your child deep into play and you can tell they have this whole universe they have created in their mind. The last thing you want is a toy to pull them out of their creative universe because the toy just made a noise and is suggesting the car just crashed when their car should be driving into the sunset.
So what toys should I get?
The best toys are simple wooden/plastic toys that they can manipulate the way they want. Some of my favorites are:
Simple blocks (foam or wooden are fine)
Egg Shakers/Any instrument they have to manipulate to make a noise
Simple push/pull toys
Baby doll and stroller
Recycled containers/egg cartons that they need to open and close
Cabinets fulls of tupperware
The benefits of these toys are endless. They will learn counting, shapes, numbers, letters, colors, depth perception, cause and effect, fine motor development, and hand-eye coordination to name a few. Not to mention how far their mind will explore! Give your child a box, watch what happens!
There are some exceptions, however.
*If your child is experiencing a developmental delay and there is a specific toy that your specialist has recommended to help motivate your child.
*If your child is hearing/vision impaired there might be some specific toys that are recommended to help.
*If your child is on the Autism Spectrum there may be toys that are specifically recommended to help with a variety of their needs.
I know going down the toy aisle might be harder with a child at foot, but I promise they will thank you later. Toys that limit their creativity will not be fun as long as toys that allow them to create endless games.
Also, I think we can all agree we would rather hear our child playing and making noises themselves than those toys… need I say more?
Have questions about sleep, child development or toys? Send me an email or join my Facebook group so we can chat! I hope to see you soon!