Playing is important to children. It is the way they practice growing up. Toys are the tools children use in play. Toys can be purchased, or they may be as simple as kitchen pan lids or paper sack puppets. Anything children can play with safely can be a toy. In fact, you may have watched infants open presents and noticed that they spent more time playing with the ribbon and wrapping than with the toy inside.
Try to remember two or three of your favorite toys. Were they ones you created yourself or ones someone made for you?
Toys can be divided into several groups, depending on the part of the child it helps to develop.
* Toys for physical or muscle development such as wagons, bikes, boxes, puzzles, blocks, brooms, and shovels.
* Toys for sensory (touch, sight, sound, taste, smell) development such as water toys, musical instruments, bubbles, play dough, and sand toys.
* Toys for make-believe and social development such as dolls, dress-up clothes, cars, trucks, games, and books.
* Toys for creative and intellectual development such as clay, crayons, paints, books, paper, and scissors.