AGES: 5 – 7 years

SPIN AND LEARN COLOR FLASHLIGHT

  • Motor skills
  • Learning numbers and colors
  • Imagination

Children at an early age are very receptive to sounds and colors. Incorporating these things into learning tools are a great way to take that curiosity and focus it on learning. The types of toys we give children to play with can have profound influence on the way that they learn skills. Many types of toys for young children can be used as a way to jump start education.  One good example of these educational toys is the Spin and Learn Color Flashlight. Toddlers will have fun listening to music and animal sounds while interacting with the lights and colors of the flashlight. Numbers, colors, and animals are repeated through different games on the Spin and Learn Color Flashlight. The repetitive nature of the themes and activities helps children learn numbers and colors in a fun and engaging way. Toys using sound and lights to stimulate learning through the senses are likely to be the ones found most appealing to toddlers and young children.

The flashlight has different buttons and switches with different activities that will provoke curiosity. Playing with this toy enhances motor skills through different types of touch for every learning activity. The toy has a special button in the shape of a ladybug, which when pushed, also encourages movement as well. The buttons are designed to do different things depending on how many times or how hard they are pushed. For example, number buttons on the flashlight have two functions. One press will activate the numbers and two times will play music. Children who play with this will start to learn these push patterns and learn how to remember which features to activate.

The functions of the Spin and Learn Color Flashlight encourage toddlers to use their imagination. Versatile toys with multiple features and options such as this flashlight are great for encouraging imagination and creativity. Toddlers and young children will enjoy hours playing with these types of toys that cultivate knowledge and help shape and exercise their developing senses.

THE BENEFITS OF PLAYING WITH MARBLE RUN

  • Promotes engineering and building
  • Enhances creativity
  • Engages problem solving
  • Develops cognitive abilities

As children grow, it is important to be able to teach life skills and encourage mental development in a fashion that is both effective, but also fun. If your child is not engaged in what they are doing, then their attention will roam, and they will miss out on the benefits you are trying to give them.

Games like Marble Run give children the ability to construct, create and play with countless tracks and pieces that stimulate their need for a creative outlet alongside the ability to problem solve.  The sky is the limit when it comes to possibilities with games like this. Being able to create new structures that will guide each marble on its path is both fun to do in the moment, as well as imparts a feeling of satisfaction in the physical building of something new.  Each piece placement is a new decision that gently challenges the child to follow a sequence of events, and it is up to the builder to decide what pieces work best together to create their vision and which ones get in the way. All these attributes create a great way to teach problem solving while having fun. When one-piece doesn’t match well with another, it puts the child into a situation where they must engage their cognitive abilities to formulate a solution to getting them to their goal.  The more something like Marble Run is played, the more it engages their memory about what worked last time, helping guide their decisions and creativity about how the sequence should go next. 

A great creative outlet, building piece by piece a structure that guides a parade of marbles is also a magnificent way to introduce your child into various motor skills that can teach basic engineering concepts and cognitive skills in a subtle but efficient way.  Anticipating how to use gravity      to your advantage, each marble slides down connecting paths that      eventually lead to success as the marble makes its way to the finish line.  Since each pathway the child adds to the structure follows the laws of gravity, it allows children to begin to instinctively anticipate situations where they have to adapt to avoid the marbles getting stuck in one sole place before reaching the goal.  Helping children organically build mental and physical skills is obviously a goal of all parents.  Being able to do it while providing countless hours of fun is a great way to keep toddlers mentally active while having fun.

THE BENEFITS OF PLAYING MAGNA TILES

  • Promotes critical thinking 
  • Imaginative play 
  • Engages problem solving  
  • Develops cognitive abilities 
  • Pattern distinguishing 

As children develop their ability to create, play, and imagine, it is important to nurture those qualities in a fun and scholastic way. Engaging your toddler with toys that encourage them to think, solve and construct their ideas into reality is an effective method to accomplish this while embracing a fun and healthy environment.  Being able to take control and make decisions based on what the child’s imagination wants to create is just the start to what can be an efficient way to build cognitive abilities.

Magna Tiles give children the chance to imagine, plan, create, and express themselves in a creative and educational way.  At its most basic level, each tile connects to each other, forming a pattern or a shape, but it is important to distinguish what benefits it provides as well.  When playing with a toy such as Magna Tiles, a toddler’s imagination increases and opens the door to the many combinations of shapes and sizes they can form.  For each design that pops into their mind, there is a pattern of tiles that can make that a reality.  Alongside this, they get a taste of problem solving whenever they have to think through which tile to use to get them to their desired creation.  This promotes critical abilities of logicing through problems, aiding in cognitive improvement and the practice of essential motor skills.   

Being creative is not only fun, but it inspires toddlers to concentrate on an idea and to establish hand eye coordination through play.  Critical thinking with imaginative play is a great way to improve skills for further use at school and life in general.  It gives children the chance to independently make decisions that can lead to confidence building and healthy social skills.  Being able to provide children fun and efficient ways to learn and grow is always a parent’s goal and Magna Tiles is a great fun option to help them achieve it.

LEGOS

  • Creativity
  • Problem solving
  • Teamwork

It is safe to say that Legos have become a cherished part of most people’s childhoods. Beyond being fun to play with, there is a reason behind finding Legos at day-care centers and schools everywhere. It is widely agreed that having visual and tactile aids helps children have a better understanding and learning curve in general. For teachers and parents, Legos and other types of building blocks are very flexible in that they can be used to teach children both inside the classroom as well as playing at home. They have been at the forefront for developmental education for many years. Legos and other types of building blocks ignite the imagination of children to find the solutions through creating structures and new fun worlds.

Legos play can be applied to a wide variety of different subjects such as math, science, grammar, and history. The toy benefits every subject, bringing the lessons from the textbook to the real world. Educators recommend using this type of toys in STEM programs. In math, the Legos can be a fun way to teach adding and subtracting, fractions, geometry, etc. In science, Legos can be used as models for engineering and experiments. In grammar, the different color of the blocks can be useful for children to identify the structure of a sentence’s subject, verb, and predicate. In history lessons, the Legos can be used to reenact important scenes, helping children visualize and engage their imagination on the subject which helps in memory retention. The important thing is to keep your child engaged in the subject with hand-on teaching methods.

Legos are great for team building exercises for kids at an early level. With guided supervision, children can work on a project together. They develop communication skills as they talk amongst each other to come up with ideas to create the final product. Legos reinforce the skills of sharing and communicating with other children or adults, which will help the child when they go to school and start doing group projects and engaging more socially. It further develops their communication and social skills.

Children’s imagination can flourish playing with Legos, or other quality building blocks. The mental skills used to first create the ideas in the mind, deciding where to place the blocks to make their vision real, and how to solve any challenge they encounter while doing it, are some of the skills a child develops while playing with Legos. It stimulates their senses and motor skills as they are envisioning their goal and manipulating the blocks in the real-world building process. This kind of activity is extremely beneficial for children’s learning potential as it’s been proven many times that working with your hands helps acquire and cement cognitive knowledge in an actively learning environment.

THE BENEFITS OF THE ABACUS

  • Engaging in memorization
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Problem solving
  • Helps improve perception

Math is one of the most challenging areas in education, and teaching it to children can be difficult at first. Using tools such as the Abacus helps create an easy environment to visually and tactilely understand and learn concepts such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and even division.  These are the key elements that form the basis of higher mathematics, and making math more accessible and easier to comprehend at an early age yields obvious and very real benefits. 

The Abacus is easily one of the most utilized tools ever made throughout history.  Its existence dates back many centuries, and yet it continues to benefit the youth today as it did the population at large back then.  What makes it so unique is its simplicity of use coupled with its flexibility of application. You can take each bead from the abacus and use it to do basic math very quick and easy, while providing visual affirmation of the underlying concepts.  Though effectively early calculators used by everyone, today Abacus are generally made to appeal to a younger audience, with bright colors, different sizes, and sometimes even included math kits made of the blocks.  They help children grow their understanding in an environment where they can consider what surrounds them logically and numerically, and apply that knowledge into real world situations.  Utilizing several beads on each line of the Abacus helps the child visually keep track of these advanced concepts when sliding each one either left or right to count or calculate in real time. 

Use of tools such as an Abacus engages children in problem solving and memorization in an entertaining way. When they are presented with problems and situations that the device can be used to solve, it gives a sense of accomplishment along with the underlying confidence of learning.  This can be something simple, like dividing to share at school and home, or even the beginnings of  basic algebra.  It helps improve perception skills and eye-hand coordination by observing the manipulation of numerical patterns and ingrains the understanding of these processes.  The use of an Abacus can help bring these understandings from the immediate physical/visual stimulation during play, to evolving into a purely mental ability to use solving whatever exercise or challenge comes their way in life.

THE BENEFITS OF THE LEARN-TO-PLAY PIANO

  • Engaging in memorization
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Improves social skills

Engaging a child with a musical instrument is one of the most efficient ways to develop and enhance their motor and cognitive skills.  The piano, requiring time, practice, and dedication, creates an environment of creativity, memorization and confidence for people of all ages and all around the world. 

Picking up an instrument at a young age benefits a child further down the line in educational and social ways.  Learning how to play the piano challenges the individual in a healthy way to memorize, interpret and produce music – all with immediate feedback through the tunes they play.  Each key and melody connect to a pattern that ultimately creates a song. These key aspects are ones that can be directly applied to retaining information and processing healthy study habits as an ongoing foundation for their education. Alongside these educational benefits, are the improvement of social skills throughout the years.  It is widely understood that learning how to play an instrument can build confidence that can spill over into social gatherings, meetings, and in education in all forms. Presenting information or giving a presentation for a class or event suddenly become less stressful, and even enjoyable experiences. The piano assists in the development of these cognitive skills at a high level to lead children to feeling comfortable in tense and eventful situations. 

Other than arrangements that can be learned, children can be led down a creative path and begin to make their own musical arrangements. Although at first what is produced are basic rhythm patterns, this is the starting point to their creative side continuing to develop. Activities that encourage both critical and creative thinking open many doors to building success for the future.  Lastly, by the pure mechanics of practicing the piano and other instruments, the improvement of motor skills advances quickly.  The process of focusing and pressing each piano key precisely and in order becomes easier and easier as the skills develop.  The range of sound surging from each keynote can drive children to match sound with touch, and the more subtle aspects of the pressure needed to create the tone and effect they are looking for.  Presenting children with an instrument gives them the opportunity to find interest and hobbies at a young age that can push them into further academic pursuits and chances to develop their careers later in life with their own original thoughts and ideas.

LEARNING MATH WITH YAHTZEE

  • Helps improve memory
  • Improves cognitive skills
  • Accessible math for young kids
  • Helps refine logic and strategy

Yahtzee is a game beloved by many, and has shown itself in many different cultures and regions, although sometimes under  different names and rule variations.

The objective of the game is simple on the surface – to score points by rolling five dice to make certain combinations. The dice can be rolled up to three times in a turn to try to make various scoring combinations, and dice must remain in the box. A game consists of thirteen rounds back and forth rolling the dice with the winner being the player that scores the most points. After each round the player chooses which scoring category is to be used for that round. Once a category has been used in the game, it cannot be used again. The scoring categories have varying point values, some of which are fixed values and others for which the score depends on the value of the dice. A Yahtzee is five-of-a-kind and scores 50 points, the highest of any category. 

When young players first start playing, they may need to count the numbers on the dice to note which number they have rolled. However, as they get more used to seeing those dots on the dice, they will be able to easily recognize the patterns of each number, so that they can see at a glance which number they have rolled. Both excellent developmental skills.

Since the game uses five dice at a time. This allows one to start working with larger numbers and adding up multiple groups. Until the player gets comfortable with the addition, they can count the dots in order to tally their scores for several of the categories on the scorecard which require adding up the numbers on some or all dice.

The player can be encouraged to use different strategies when adding up, as their abilities grow.. For example, using their friends of ten, known doubles, etc. The game also provides the player an introduction to multiplication without them even knowing it. When scoring for fives, all answers are multiple of fives. When they learn how to skip count, it helps them add even quicker. For example, if they roll five 5s, they can count it up by going “five, ten, fifteen, twenty, twenty-five”, instead of counting all the dots on the dice one by one. This is an excellent way to teach math in a real world situation.

With all of the complex probabilities at play throughout the game, much can be learned by rote and can also be discussed and helped along in the process.

SEE AND SPELL LEARNING TOYS

2 YEARS

  • Improves vocabulary skills
  • Enhances phonetic capabilities
  • Critical thinking
  • Develops cognitive abilities

Introducing children into the world of spelling and grammar may seem difficult and overwhelming, but when paired with a toy that can provide these skills in an entertaining way, learning becomes smooth and natural. Being able to introduce these topics at an early age can create a healthy educational environment for your toddler that will benefit them their entire lives.

See and spell learning toys create a visual and linguistic environment that can lead children to understand the alphabet more efficiently. Toys such as these give examples of animals, objects and common words that children at a young age can identify in a fun way; this helps lead to an improvement in vocabulary and their motor identification skills along with it. Each exercise or word becomes an opportunity to think critically and make decisions based on improving memory recall and developing skills. Hands on toys such as these open doors to reading at a young age and encourages children to constantly identify patterns outside of playtime. Identifying the alphabet is everywhere, car rides and weekend getaways can become learning experiences when viewing signs and pictures daily. See and Spell toys can be the start to better and better language skills in a fun and educational way.

There are several toys that can help growing children focus on both the written and phonetic aspects of vocabulary. Teaching the child to identify and choose each letter as they move into the spelling of actual words, and pronouncing them accurately, helps improve confidence and a sense of accomplishment. Being introduced to basic phonology at this age can improve speaking skills and help avoid lisps, stutters or other speech impediments. This directly links into the cognitive abilities that can be enhanced through this method of learning. Getting a head start to what will be further introduced in school will benefit both the child and the parent throughout their childhood. Reading skills and linguistic capabilities are the cornerstone upon which an excellent educational foundation is built, and efforts at an early age will benefit a child’s entire life.

MR. PENCIL ABC BAG PACK

  • Learn the alphabet
  • Develops language
  • Creativity
  • writing

How to teach your kids their ABC’s before they start school? There are many educational toys that teach the alphabet, but the Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack has the National Parenting Product Award for its ingenuity. Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack is designed to teach children the alphabet in a fun way through different activities. From basic recognition of the shape of the letters to how to spell words, the Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack is a great tool for aiding in learning how to read and write. Focusing on different activities such as sounding out the letters and how to accurately write the letters, children can get a head start in school.

Benefits of having a Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack are numerous and immediate. It prepares your kids for schoolwork and it stimulates learning from an early age. The toy’s colors, sounds, and music keep children entertained and engaged in the activity. The advantages of this toy, and others like it, are that it uses different learning techniques to reinforce the letters recognition. Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack has an activity that involves animals with each letter of the alphabet that helps associate the letters with words, aiding in memory as well as general recognition. The alphabet is carved in one side of the backpack to help your kid trace both uppercase and lowercase letters. The letters are modeled in blocks and in buttons which help children interact with the letters using all their senses. The seven activity modes in Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack are great guidelines on how to tackle writing and reading practice in a loosely structured, though effective way.

The backpack is light which means children can carry it like older kids do when they go to school. Mr. Pencil’s ABC Backpack features a board where your kid can draw, helping encourage their creativity in other ways. The drawing board is great for encouraging your kid to learn words and further develop motor skills through images they made themselves. Helping encourage children’s imagination as they draw and write is a great way to have fun while continuously advancing their abilities.

There are great opportunities to utilize this type of toy in other ways such as to come up with fun bedtime stories incorporating your child’s drawings, limited only by your own imagination guided by theirs. Additionally, the music featured in the game can help children with the sounding of the letters and you can make songs to sing along with your kids. Your kids will never get bored.

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