I just read this article called, “Why Dumb Toys Make kids Smarter.” It was about this mom who decided before she got married that her kids would never play with Pokemon cards. She thought it detached them from other things and their self-worth would be determined by what cards they owned. So they kept their kids away from them for years. Finally some cousins gave their kids some Pokemon cards and he became hooked. She soon realized that because of Pokemon cards her son’s math skills shot through the roof, not to mention his reading skills. He happily improved these skills instead of being forced to read children’s books or play math games.
I totally agree that toys and interests are a great tool to improving your child’s education. But like this mom I have an idea of what toys I want my kids to use in order to do that.
Two of these have become a realization recently:
- Starfall- I had seen my nieces and nephews spending a great amount of time on the computer playing with starfall.com. I thought it was a tricky way to get your parents to give you more computer time. I also thought that while learning your ABC’s is a good thing, it could better be learned by interacting with your parents, not a computer. Well while we were visiting Grandma’s house, my daughter became hooked on starfall. Then today I took her to the Zoo. She knew those animals so much better because of starfall. Now I think that starfall is a great learning tool for kids and still should be supplemented with parental involvement, but it is great!
- Watercolors- So my mother-in-law has told me several times how my husband painted beautiful pictures when he was our daughter’s age. So I had this desire to make Ester, my daughter, an artist by giving her lots of chances to develop her artistic skills. I have been waiting for the day where my daughter will paint my a beautiful picture that I just can’t resist to put it on the fridge. So I have been trying to get her to paint. That is what I want her to do. She instead will take the watercolors and open and close the lid, talk to all the colors, pour all the water all over her..ect. She does the same kind of thing with sidewalk chalk or colored pencils. She will play swords with them or put them on like lipstick. Anything but create a beautiful picture.
So through reading this article I have realized that I need to be more open to all toys and activities. I have defiantly prejudged many toys and I have a vision of the toys my daughter will love when she grows up. But what if she doesn’t? Will I let her learn and experience the way she wants to?
Challenge: Give Toys a Chance!