There is a background to why this question came to my mind. Chatting with one my friends, the discussion came to the topic of getting toys for her kids. There was a new chota bheem toy which her kids wanted. During the discussion she made a statement – “how many toys should we buy for the kids. Every weekend I go out, kids need some new toy.”
Well this statement got me thinking. I also have similar situation with my kids. I generally try to balance, but I am sure there are parents out there, going through same situation. And hence I started scraping though internet to see if there has been some research on this.
This might not be a much liked statement, but parents are driven by guilt. More so if parents are working. But it’s not just working parents. As disposable income is increasing, parents are more inclined to give their kids whatever they demand.
So are more toys good for kids? Let us try to understand.
Social skills – This is first on our list. As a parent all of us want our kids to be socially active. Infact this skill gets developed from childhood. Does toys help in social development. Yes as well as no. For example if your kids have lot of outdoor toys he/she will try to play outside and if you have lots of indoor toys like RC cars or other small toys he/she will play with in the confinement of his/her room. When your kid is playing outside, will make lot of friends. And this is what we want as a parent.
Concentration/Distraction – Second on our list is the issue with concentration. Too many toys overwhelm kids. And hence they get distracted and do not concentrate on one toy for long and since they do not concentrate for long, they do not get the full learning out of the toy. There is no conclusive evidence on how many toys can be a distraction. We ourselves are best judge.
Creativity and Imagination – Third on our list is creativity. Too many toys may hinder kids imagination. For example if there are lot of cars of different shape, size and type, your kid will just play and forget. Give him open ended toys. For example a toy which can get converted into multiple type of toys. This will improve his imagination.
Reading/Writing and Drawing skills – If toys are less you kid will spend more time drawing. Give him/her enough story books and less toys. This will improve the reading habit.
Sharing and Caring – It is a basic human nature, we care for what we have less. Same it true with kids. If he has less toys, he is going to care for it and share with friends. This is a very good habit, isn’t it?
Health – Kids has less toys at home, will look for more outdoor activities. This will help improving your kids health.
Tidy room – Last but not least, we all want our kids room to be clutter free. Less toy means less clutter.
I am not saying that we should not give toys to kids. We should and we should remember that toys are an important in their physical and mental development. But we should take care that we are not giving then wrong toys. Wrong kind of toys can actually do more harm than good. This is the point I am tying to make.
Hope you liked my view. Do send me your comments!