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The Power of Play

Sometimes it’s hard to look at a brightly colored toy and see it as anything but just plain old fun for kids. Yet, we all know that it is the intention of toys, through that fun play, to harness that power of learning and growth. It’s true that from the early days of a childs’ life – their interaction with toys facilitate the environment to learn so much, that’s the power of play.

Is your child now learning hand-eye coordination? imagination? movement? textures? sounds? consequences? As a parent, it’s sometimes hard to predict the exact milestone your child is trying to master, unless it’s plainly obvious. That’s why it’s reassuring to know that Fisher-Price has done the research and has easily organized their products to age and milestone, and has embarked on a new Milestone Moments Campaign.

On staff is Dr. Deborah Weber, Senior Manager for the Fisher-Price Child Research Department {and also an expert in early childhood development. Dr. Weber holds a Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate degree in Early Childhood Development and Elementary Education {Plus she has 2 kids!}.

Dr. Weber has some information around the brand new Fisher-Price, Milestone Moments Campaign and some tips she has learned through her education, experience and from being a Mom:

  • Milestone Moments Campaign:
    • Every child goes through milestone moments at every age and stage of development; therefore, Fisher-Price decided to launch its 2011 milestones campaign to communicate to mothers the range of Fisher-Price toys available that help babies grow and develop in various ways, depending on what milestone they are experiencing at a specific time. The milestones are: soothe, sense, move, discover, socialize, learn, create and imagine.
  • Dr. Weber’s Tips:
    • Soothe: Keep your baby close to you in a swing or bouncer when you are doing things around the house such as cooking or laundry. It will make them feel comfortable and confident to know that mom is by their side.
    • Learn: Encourage your child to play with toys in different ways. Be sure to join in the play with them and show them all of the special features of the toys including the lights, sounds, different shapes, colors and interaction, as seen with the Fun with FriendsTM Musical Table.
    • Sense: Establish a routine with your baby by putting on a soothing mobile at the same time every night. When your baby hears a familiar Ocean WondersTM tune or sees a familiar visual, they will know it is bedtime and will feel soothed and relaxed.

Though age suggestions on packages are a wonderful help, learning doesn’t stop when that intended age is reached. I see this now with my 6 year old, when she plays with her {2.5 year old} twin sisters. The toys they sometimes play with might be classified for 2 year olds, but they are all able to create new ways to play with toys, together. Their imaginations are limitless, so keep this in mind the next time your kids are ‘bored’ with a toy.

After all, my girls used their Ocean Wonders mobile long after they were out of cribs – they needed that soothing and familiar sights and sounds. This product intended to sooth a baby to sleep was also reassuring to my toddlers, whom were adjusting to the world of big-girl beds.

It has been interesting to see my oldest daughter play with some Fisher-Price toys, made for kids whom are my twins’ age. I can’t wait to share more about this with you in future posts regarding the Fisher-Price Play Panel.

The power of play is stronger than we may realize!

Play Panel

Follow the Play Panel at http://www.fisherpriceplay.ca

Disclosure: I’m part of the Fisher-Price Play Panel and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

 

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4 Comments

  1. Personally I find it very encouraging that Fisher-Price is researching this stuff. Plus I love it that Dr. Weber has 2 kids… it’s funny how that almost means more to me than all of her education. That being said I am sure that the education and parenting experience together are what make her an asset to Fisher-Price 🙂 .

    My older sons often will play with my 4 year old’s toys – and definitely not in the way they were intended! Just last week my son was using one of my daughter’s preschool toys as an “army weapon of death”. My little princess wasn’t too thrilled with that lol!!

  2. 🙂 I find that kids can use their imagination to use toys as they see fit for them at that time. I bet the R&D department at Fisher Price would be something pretty amazing to see in person…. there is plenty more that goes into making these toys then we could imagine.

  3. Oh, playing (unstructured, just let ’em go kind of playing) is so important. Fisher Price has some great toys that lead to imaginative play – SUPER essential in development in so many ways. This Milestones Moments Campaign sounds great!

  4. I enjoy what you guys tend to be up too. This kind of clever work and exposure!
    Keep up the superb works guys I’ve added you guys to my blogroll.

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