Big or small, batteries or no batteries - not only do these things keep our children busy, they help in development and foster creativity and imagination.
But rather than having a house full of toys that last a matter of months if not weeks, we have compiled a list of our favourite toys that last. Whether our children play with them for years, or they get passed down to siblings, cousins, and friends; these toys are the ones your children will keep coming back to.
As a child we had a chest full of these and it was a go-to whenever we were bored or as an alternative to screen time. The possibilities with these building blocks are endless, and they stand the test of time - in fact we’re not sure who enjoys this toy more; adults or children.
These type of toys are perfect to inspire creativity in any child. Where one day they are an Italian Michelin star chef, the next they can be a high flying food critic coming in to write a review. A toy kitchen is also a great tool to help children make sense of the world by practising skills such as pouring, cutting, taking things in and out of the oven, and more.
Never underestimate the power of simple wooden blocks - they contribute to the development of skills such as physical, social, and language (not to talk about hand eye coordination). The fact that these blocks are so simple means children use their creativity to play with them - from building towers, to laying them on the floor, or even using them to help with counting. Their durability means these wooden planks will stick around for years.
This is another toy that really gets children thinking. They can either create something from scratch using their imagination, or follow steps to build a structure from a picture. And because the tiles are multi coloured, there’s even room to explore patterns and geometric shapes.
This is one of the toys that gets pulled out of the cupboard time and time again, by children of all ages. The beauty of the marble run is that because of the different construction options, it can feel like a different toy each time you play with it. As well as hand eye coordination, children get to make predictions and experiment with the runs to see where the marble will end up. And the bigger they get, the bigger and more complex the construction.
No household is complete without a few tubs of playdough, and it’s no wonder, because this toy holds numerous learning opportunities for those little hands. Whether it’s used to enhance creativity, or improve hand eye coordination, this toy is an excellent conversation starter, and can be played with a variety of age groups. And if you find your playdough dries up too quickly, find a simple recipe and make your own!
Did you notice what all these toys have in common? They are all open ended toys. Rather than having buttons to press or levers to pull, most of the toys on our list leave room for the child to imagine and create. It is for this very reason that they stand the test of time.