So I've compiled a list of great resources that will hopefully help you in choosing the best toy for the children on your shopping list. One idea that these resources emphasize (and I strongly believe in) is looking for toys that are open-ended--that is, toys that the child has to use some imagination. Some electronic toys are great but I think some toys should just be the old-fashioned kind (blocks, wagons, dolls) that don't play for the child but that the child has to create a way to play with it.
- Education.com Gift Guide--this guide provides toy suggestions that are tested by kids and teachers. The list is categorized by age and price.
- Gift ideas from Tumblon--one of my favorite websites/parent resources provided this helpful list of gift ideas categorized by age group.
- Gift ideas from Playful Learning--one of my fellow bloggers posted this great list of gift ideas. These are hands-on, well-tested gifts that encourage learning and exploration.
- eBeanstalk.com--I discovered this website a few months ago and it looks great! All the toys are tested by child development experts, including child psychologists, speech pathologists and educators.
Lastly, here's a useful article from Creative Play Plus about what to look for when choosing a developmentally appropriate toy. Great stuff!
Enjoy the holidays with all the children in your life!