Saturday, January 15, 2011

Turning crap gifts/toys into something educational.

I don't know about you but as a parent I see my child given upteen amounts of stuff that I can only label as crap! and Im sorry to be so honest here but it is one of those things that really gets on my nerves.I know I should be more grateful and its the thought that counts but at times I wish people would pick up the phone and ask "I would like to buy your child a gift is there something that they need or you would like for them". So I thought I would write a post on how to get a bit creative with these toys/gifts and see if you can use them educationally before you quietly put them in the bin before the well meaning family member finds out.

My DD1 recently received a gift which was called a dog tube which was filled with many different types of dog figurines. The dog figurines are not particularly big so it is an issue to have them around my DD2 as she grows and gets moving and starts putting them in her mouth. Also my DD1 is not really into dogs as she tends to like African animals and Sea animals. So it does not get played with very often. I bring them out every now and then but only if she wants to play with them and no really young children are around.

So onto how I turned it into an educational toy and something fun to play with every now and then.

I went through the dog figurines and worked out what each breed was and then I put the breeds into a word document printed it out and laminated it, and then cut them out and made it into a game to play called "Find my name." I laid the words out where she could see them, picked up a figurine and in my best Scooby Doo voice started saying "I am a Boxer where's my word? I'm very sad without my word". My dd1 thought this was hilarious and would search for the word 'Boxer' and match it up with the figurine I gave her. We did this as long as she wanted to. I think we did about 6 different breeds and there are 13 in the tube and every now and then she brings it out and we play with it. Even though she is not that interested in it now she may be in the near future.

So before you chuck the next so called gift out just ask yourself "Is there a way I can turn this into an educational fun thing to play with?" and if you can, do it but if you can't don't let another toy clutter up the precious space you have in your house.


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