“It is in playing, and only in playing, that the individual child or adult is able to be creative and to use the whole personality, and it is only in being creative that the individual discovers the self.” -DW Winnicott (1896-1971), a renowned British Pediatrician and Psychoanalyst
Yesterday, while randomly browsing over the internet, I came across the above quote. It immediately caught my eyes, and led me to think of the truth in it.
For a child, though the formal schooling starts much later, the learning starts as soon as he is born. Initially, a child learns from his environment. Once he is familiar with the environment, he uses toys to keep himself entertained, and in the process, learns from them. As parent, it is our responsibility to foster this learning by providing appropriate toys to our kids. How often it happens, that in the process of fulfilling this responsibility, we spend endless hours in the toy store to find the right toy. But when given to the kid, the toy spends no more than 30 minutes with him, only to be thrown away in the toy box with multitude of other toys.
But few toys always remain kids’ favorites. Same is with our 2 yr daughter, Pari.
Often, we wish that someone could tell us which toys would strike a chord with our kids. Here, we are presenting a list of toys that are my 2 year daughter, Pari’s, all-time favorites. In case you are looking for toys for a similar age-group girl, you might want to give one of these a try. We are purposely not providing detailed description of the toys as you can anyways find that on internet. As we did some price research on these toys while purchasing them, we are also mentioning the price at which we purchased to provide a benchmark.
Price: N/A It was a gift
We call it cookie jar. It is basically a shape-sorter. It includes a cute shaped cookie jar and 5 cookies which are different colored shapes numbered from 1 to 5. This one has been an all time hit with our daughter ever since she was 5 months. As a 5 month old, all she could do was grab those cookies and use it as a teether. Eventually, she started pressing the jar’s nose to hear funny sounds. As 1.5 yr old, she could identify all the shapes and was able to put them through the shape slots in the jar. At 2, this continues to be one of the most played toys!!!
Price: N/A. It was a gift.
Our daughter, just like any other kid, loves watching youtube on laptop. In fact, we have designated one spare laptop for this purpose, which she calls hers. We considered buying the Vtech laptop as that might help in reducing her screen-time, but then dropped the idea as the Vtech Laptop has black and white display, which we felt will not attract a kid used to the real laptop’s colorful display. But then, she received this laptop as a gift on her 2nd birthday. This laptop comes to our rescue on so many instances:
1. It has reduced her screen-time substantially. Instead of asking for the real laptop, many a times, she plays with this one.
2. She always gets bored in the car-seat and wants to get out of it. But since she has got this laptop, she carries it everytime she goes out of the house and plays with it while in the car seat. Its tote-like shape and light weight is quite convenient for her to carry.
3. It has always been a task for us to keep her sitting in her stroller while we are out. Now, she happily sits in it while ‘working’ on her Vtech laptop.
Price: $39.99, from Target
This has been an ultimate life-saviour especially while I am working in the kitchen. Pari always wants mommy around. If she is playing with a toy, she wants mommy to get involved, if mommy is in the kitchen she will remain in the kitchen all the time and will keep touching the gas burner knobs. Also, she does not play with the same toy for very long. But since she has got a small pretend play kitchen as a gift from her aunt, we just tell her to ‘go to her own kitchen and cook there’. She does that and loves it. She keeps serving us the meals and coffee prepared in her kitchen and insists on taking more when we have finished. We are not allowed to say no:) Thankfully, she plays with it for hours without involving us. Seeing her love for this kitchen, we have got her a bigger pretend play kitchen. That’s the first place where she runs to after waking up.
Price: $9.99 from Toys R Us
How often it happens that while walking in a mall, instead of sitting in the stroller, your kid wants to move the stroller herself. And as she is unable to push the stroller, we almost become stationary If the above statement sounds like you and your child, doll stroller can be a solution for you. We always keep the doll stroller in our car and carry it along with my daughter’s stroller and a doll or teddy (to keep in doll stroller). Whenever she demands to come out of her own stroller to push it or to be held, we give her the doll stroller, which she can easily push. In fact, she loves going out because she gets to push her doll stroller.
Probably, a pretend play veggie cart or doll pram also can serve the purpose. We like the one that we have as it is very light weight, right height for our daughter, easy to fold and store in the car trunk or her own stroller.
Few words of caution: Your little-one is going to look super-cute while pushing her doll in the doll stroller. Be prepared for a celebrity-like feeling as your kid grabs eyeballs while walking down the mall or park!
Price: $29.97, from Walmart
We were looking for a chair for our daughter when we came across this one which doubles as a toy. It had mixed reviews, so we were a little apprehensive while ordering it, but it is so cute-looking that we thought of giving it a try. She loves it!
We will elaborate a little about the bad reviews that we came across for this chair. Some people said it is too small for their baby. Pari has small stature, she fits well. But someone with a stout child might want to give the chair size a thought. The manufacturer mentions the maximum weight limit as 55 lbs/25 kg.
Another funny but practical review that we came across said that the reviewer’s kid was being potty-trained at the time when this chair arrived. The chair has a lift-up seat and make-believe seat adjustment bar (which could be mistaken as a toilet flush by a kid). Her kid thought it’s a new potty and ….. So use your judgement to buy this chair if your kid is being potty-trained too 😛
You might also find reviews saying that the paint on the number button wears off, which is true. The paint is gone in just 5 months. Another problem that we faced is that after 4 months of usage, the chair started continuously repeating few phrases at the highest volume level. It was fine when we switched to low volume level but eventually this started happening even at low volume. But this got rectified after changing the batteries.
Despite few downsides, this is a much-used and much-liked chair by my daughter and we definitely recommend it to everyone (apart from stout kids)
Hope this list helps our readers. Please do let us know your feedback on any of these toys. We would love to hear your child’s experience with these toys. Also, do share your kid’s favorite toys too.
PS: This post is not sponsored by any company and the links provided are only for the benefit of our readers. These are not affiliate links and we are NOT gaining in anyway if you purchase through these links.