Child’s Play: Electronic toys vs Traditional toys

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Finding toys for toddlers that won’t easily bore them or that aren’t constantly needing batteries or toys that are simply not too gender-specific is hard to do. Nowadays, in this tech-savvy society, parents are looking for toys and gadgets for their children that will enhance their learning abilities as well as creativity. Fortunately, there are hundreds of toys that are made to be educational and fun at the same time. Even stuffed toys can be used as an early learning tool with its smart built-in computer which parents can even personalize. These cuddly toys have now become a teaching gizmo. But how far can these modern, electronic toys take your child’s learning curve?

Electronic toys vs Traditional toys

Creating a learning path for your child is one of the best things you can give him in his early development stage; however, many parents believe that just because they are providing their kids with all the toys they can afford, their kids are getting something valuable out of it. This is a common misconception although we’ve come a long way since in the early days, when toys were actually merely an object to play with, the kids then learned to use their imagination instead.  Electronic, interactive toys have a bevy of challenging offerings for all ages down to little tots. Most of which require batteries, a chock-full of enticing lights, sounds and action. Electronic toys are thought-provoking, and they engage your child to discover their cognitive skills from counting to singing, to identifying various shapes and colors to deducing cause and effect.

There is a downside however to battery-operated toys. No matter how well-conceived and cutting-edge they seem, they are still limited. Good toys are those that engage, but the best toys are those that engage a child’s whole being: mentally, physically, emotionally and socially. Child-initiated play, in its most natural form is sublimely creative as your child begins exploring in an unstructured, carefree, imaginative and fun world of his own. Electronic toys run with pre-programmed chips and simply cannot provide the open-ended play opportunities as traditional toys. For example, building blocks in a game application from your tablet may challenge your little one to build a particular structure but it will not provide the ultimate experience of the physical and very sensory activity of positioning wood blocks through experimental trial and error and discovering how high he can build and watching the blocks crash on the floor. Because your child is absorbing mostly everything he sees and encounters, and by pretending in the process to be castle builders, a prince or a knight, he acquires through imaginative play the essential social skills that will be beneficial for him later in his life. No virtual block or any electronic application can offer that.

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