Are you a budding toymaker who wants to create amazing educational toys that kids will love? Creating the perfect plaything that also imparts children with valuable lessons about the world or how to behave can often be a lot easier said than done, as children are notoriously fickle about what they connect with and what they will dismiss.
The following will examine some top tips for designing effective educational toys for small children to enjoy and benefit from.
Knowing the difference between games and educational toys
Educational toys act as flexible and free tools that allow children to discover their own imaginations and push those imaginations to new heights. A great product is one that is simple in nature but has a huge range of utility in what it allows kids to have fun experimenting with. The whole point of this kind of product is that children have fun while learning, not have fun some of the time and learn the other half of the time – it needs to work in concert. This is why something like a teddy bear with a multiple-choice quiz hidden inside it isn’t really a good educational toy.
On the other hand, a game is more about a directed experience from point a to point b where the child complete one or more tasks in order to achieve a goal. A game is a structured system that can still teach children things, but it is technically not the same as an educational toy.
Involve parents and siblings any way you can
Collaborative learning is a real thing and its proven that children learn and retain information at a higher rate when they are doing it in a dynamic group environment. Children love to learn and play with their parents, so designing educational toys that give parents a way to interact can be a great way to ensure the success of your product.
You could create an educational toy that has a big and small versions for children and adults or something that comes in multiple pieces that need teamwork to assemble. The sky is the limit when it comes to designing cool products that all family members can interact with for the benefit of the child’s learning.
Parents are always on the lookout for ways to foster greater playtime interaction with their kids and have wholesome family experiences. This can be a selling point for your product and its power over self-doubting parents should not be underestimated.
Storytelling is a core human tradition that transcends race and culture, meaning that each and every child can benefit from it. Designing educational toys that help children tell their own stories is one of the best ways to teach them how to interpret reality and product content for others to digest.
Almost every kind of creative profession requires people to interpret reality and reinterpret it for others in the form of a narrative. Parents who want their children to explore the full breadth of their creative potential will be drawn to educational toys that encourage children to tell stories, no matter how silly they may seem.
In the context of the classroom, this kind of educational toy would also help children learn about perspectives outside of their own by seeing the stories other children tell. This gives children a good understanding that the world does not revolve around them and is being subjectively experienced by lots of young minds just like theirs.
Hopefully, the above article has given you some valuable tips on how to design effective educational toys for small children.