In a world of IPad's, smartphones and computers, science kits for kids and educational toys are becoming more and more important everyday. You might be wondering why, these toys are not only fun and exciting, they also help to build some of the crucial skills that will help your children as they grow up into a young adult.
The “What If” Process
Science is a process and educational toys help kids explore the “what ifs” that they’ll encounter not only in childhood while they’re learning but as they grow up. Getting them asking those questions and following those processes through will give them the skills to ask “what if” about the bigger things in life.
This doesn’t only apply to educational toys and science kits either. Whether they’re destined to be a scientist, writer, lawyer or social worker, learning to probe into the “what ifs” from an early age will serve them well in any life or career. Only by developing the ability to look outside the box and ask what would happen in certain situations will children truly be able to excel in their fields. Plus, it makes them more open to logical arguments at home along the lines of “what will happen if you don’t put your clothes in the linen basket”.
It Breeds Confidence
Not only will playing with educational toys help kids learn practical skills, they’ll also give the confidence to ask questions and accomplish things. Even the smallest victory with a scientific toy will encourage them as they’ll feel as though they’ve won. Best of all, since they’ve had fun while doing it, they’ll associate that scientific victory with enjoyment and want to do it again.
For some children, especially, these victories are important. Some kids can become easily discouraged and they may need the extra confidence that regular mini victories can provide. Providing different educational toys, then, and stretching their skills in different ways will provide varied mini victories that will make them feel as though they’re accomplishing lots of different things through playing.
No Stress Learning
Schools and other official learning environments can be pressurised. In fact, they can be enough to put kids off learning and testing themselves mentally, especially if there’s a teacher who dents their confidence. Learning to love learning is the first step towards lifelong development and success, and no stress helps infinitely.
Linking science and other types of educational play with something they do at home will also take some of the pressure off. Bringing this into everyday situations can also be very beneficial, children will discover that they don't just learn at school and in turn may be more interested to try new things.
Encourage Verbal Skills
You might not think that scientific toys are the way to improve a child’s verbal skills but encouraging them to talk about what they’re doing helps to develop yet another one of their skills. Kids will naturally talk about things that they enjoy, so completing cool science experiments are a great way to get your little ones chatting. By asking questions and probing further, you can even help boost their analytical skills as they try to explain what they’re doing and why they did it.
Along with this, if they’re excited about what they’re doing, they’ll likely talk to their friends about it. This is yet further development of their verbal skills and it might even spread the enjoyment of educational toys to more children – and that has to be a good thing.
Develop Their Creativity
Science and creativity go hand in hand. Creativity encourages innovation which, in turn, encourages scientific experimentation and development. Without the ability to think creatively, many scientific breakthroughs would not have happened. Even so, it’s not uncommon for children to feel as though all the creativity is being removed from those so-called “serious” lessons when they’re at school. By showing that they can use their creativity in conjunction with science and educational toys, you’re making an explicit connection between being creative and education – this is another element that suggests to kids that science and education can be fun.
Of course, creativity is not confined solely to science. Whether you choose scientific toys or other educational ones, you can help inspire creativity in a way that might boost their creative performance later. Even a lawyer needs a spark of creativity to work through their legal arguments, while doctors use creative thinking to solve medical problems.
There is always room for creativity and starting from birth is so important. Baby toys are a great way to encourage children to learn, develop and grow during their early years.
Improve Construction and Design Skills
Many educational toys come with an element of construction or design attached. This helps children’s reasoning skills as they learn how to assemble something, but it also helps to improve their fine motor skills as they physically achieve something with their hands and fingers.
Once more, getting children to talk about what they’re doing and why can help their verbal skills, plus they’ll likely become accustomed to things going wrong before they finally go right. These are good lessons to learn in an enjoyable environment and it will serve them well as they go through school and life.
Help Them Explore Scientific Concepts
Playing with educational toys from an early age will mean that they’re exposed to scientific concepts that will help develop their capabilities later. For example, magnets are an enduring source of fascinating for children, and learning about them can form a knowledge base for developing more scientific skills in later life.
Whether it’s gravity, basic mechanics or the principles of pushing something down a slope, scientific and educational toys help children learn skills that last forever. Best of all, they do it in an enjoyable way. You can’t ask for more than them learning and enjoying themselves within the same activity.
What science and educational toys are your children playing with at the moment? Let us know in the comments box below...