With Christmas coming up, one of the main topics of discussion between my mummy friends and me has been Christmas presents. Which toy is hot and which is not? We all have different opinions, which doesn’t really surprise seeing that all our kids have different interests, characters and skills, but I thought I would have a look at the children’s toys at Littlewoods and give you an overview of my favourite toys for pre-schoolers – simply because that’s the age group I feel most confident with due to Amy’s age.
Dolls and Prams
Amy adores her dolls, so much so that they are taking over her entire bed, so we have bought her a pram set that comes with not only a buggy, but also a highchair and baby rocker. She will be able to act out lots of different situations, feed her baby, push it around the garden and rock it to sleep. I find dolls are great for role play and giving her accessories that every normal baby needs, will give her play a new dimension and a little more depth.
When buying Christmas or birthday presents, I always find it important that they fulfil more purposes than just filling a child’s bedroom. I want Amy to gain something from her toys, e.g. fun, new experiences or learning something new. Educational toys combine all these aspects and I think jigsaw puzzles, memory games or even electronic toys such as a Leap Pad or Inno Tab are a great way to provide your child with hours of fun, but also an educational challenge.
Toys that promote pretend play
Pretend play doesn’t only allow your child to use their imagination, but it also helps them to develop new skills such as language skills or emotional skills. Play kitchens, shopping tills, dolls houses or tool boxes are a great way to let children discover the world of pretend play and give them endless possibilities to develop their speech, interact with other children or adults and copy behaviour and patterns that they have seen in their everyday life.
Being creative and engaging in craft activities teaches your children skills such as hand-eye-coordination, shape and colour recognition or following instructions. Creative toys or gifts are therefore a fabulous choice when buying presents for pre-schoolers. Simple craft sets can provide children with weeks of fun and don’t have to cost much. A craft easel is a great investment toy and there are fabulous blogs out there that you can use for inspiration for art and craft projects.
Stockings are something that I have never done before coming to England and I still need some help with them from Ben. This year, we bought Amy some bath crayons and squirty toys, a Ben & Holly card game, some coloured pencils and some mini puzzles. I think, if I go through the effort of giving her a stocking, I might as well fill it with useful toys instead of plastic tad that breaks after a week. We’ll get some more bits and bobs over the next couple of weeks ad will of course add some sweet treats, but I do think we’re almost good to go.
What are your kids getting from Santa this year? I would love to hear what you have picked for them!
Disclosure: This post was brought to you in collaboration with Littlewoods, but I would suggest the same toys no matter which retailer you are shopping with.