Friday, 21 October 2016

"Brain vs Battery": What's Your Take?

Yesterday I witnessed another memorable day of my life. My toddler got his first cricket play kit. It was so amazing to see my husband giving him the first cricket lesson for his life. They both tried their hands on bat in our living room. My tot was also very happy after getting a new toy to explore the world. He was kicking the ball and out of 10 miss hits, a single successful hit was giving him a reason to feel overjoyed. As a mother, I was also on top of the world, catching the glimpse of my son's future as a famous bats man in my heart.
But irony is, I am noticing my son, more attracted towards his toy piano than his new cricket kit. The piano is a battery operated toy with lights and music. Fact of matter is he has many battery operated toys and he always prefers those toys out of dumb soft toys and others. But the question is, does he not find fun in doing more physical activities while playing? Is he willing to play only with those toys that use less of his mind? I did some research on it and now my take on battery operated toys has been changed. We live in a modern world that moves so fast. Unfortunately, that means our kids like things that go insanely fast, too. But that doesn’t mean we have to go as fast as they want us to, especially when we, as parents, know what’s best. 
Batteries have now become a must have for today's parents. We assume that these battery operated toys with buttons, lights, beeps and shiny plastic, stimulate development of our babies, fact is completely opposite. As per many experts these toys are making kids weak, especially when they are toddlers and developing their thinking abilities. As our babies grow, they learn to fully use their minds. But these new high-tech toys are actually dumbing down our kids, inhibiting their intellectual growth and confining their creativity. Toys play an important role in progress of our babies but today's smart toys do lot many things which hinder babies thinking out of the box.Imagine a baby having a toy drum which he needs to beat for creating sound. If he gets any toy that automatically does that on a single key press, the baby will definitely go with automatic toy. I have decided to hide some of my son's battery operated toys for now. I will try to give them to him for a limited time. I want my tot to be creative and imaginative in making his own play. So, low tech toys are way to go. 
As per my reading, these three types of toys are best for growing babies:
1) Thinking Toys (target mental and fine motor development; like puzzles, blocks, art supplies, etc.)
2) Moving Toys (target gross motor development; like ride-ons, instruments, balls, pull toys etc.)
3) Pretending Toys (target language and social/emotional development, problem solving, motor skills; like dress-up clothes, kitchen sets, stuffed animals, etc.)
Would you be willing to eliminate your kids' high-tech toys? Do you think toys that light up, make sound, or require electricity are harmful to your kid's development? 

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