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Don't Ignore Traditional Toys

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Don't Ignore Traditional Toys

Don't Ignore Traditional Toys This Year Don't Ignore Traditional Toys This Year

Don't ignore traditional toys

By Karen MacPherson
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Parents face a tough balancing act in choosing b>toys for their children.
On the one side, there's the high-tech toys, those flashy, animated playthings highly coveted by the kids. On the other side, there are the traditional toys - construction sets, board games, arts-and-crafts kits - that inspire kid-powered creativity.
The balancing act is particularly challenging this year because some of the new electronic toys offer more play value than their predecessors, experts say.
"Many of them are much more age-appropriate, and they're not just about pushing buttons," said Joanne Oppenheim, co-author, with her daughter Stephanie, of the annually published "Oppenheim Toy Portfolio.
"There's more physicality to them. More often they are getting kids off the couch and on their feet. And they're not as didactic as they used to be."
While high-tech toys are all the rage, however, the Oppenheims and other experts stress that it's still important for kids to have more traditional playthings.
"In fact, I would suggest that parents delay kids' exposure to these toys as long as possible," said Diane Levin, a Wheelock College child-development expert.
"Give your children open-ended toys that nurture their creativity. And remember that some electronic toys are worse than others, such as those that promote gender stereotypes."

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