A baby gift can serve a lot of purposes, and one of those purposes is education. Children develop rapidly, and they learn quickly. One of the roles a parent assumes is as educator. Toys for a young infant is not just a plaything. It is an educational tool that provides an opportunity for a child to learn at his or her own pace.
Children, from the day they are born, are explorers. They use all of their senses to satisfy a hunger for learning. Give a child under two years old a toy and chances are it will be touched and tasted and then banged on the floor or table so there is sound. We tend to think of toys as merely a way to entertain children, but they are much more than that because children learn from everything that is made accessible.
That is why parents have wall hangings and infant mobiles around the crib. These give a child plenty of opportunity to look at colors, motion, shapes and designs. In other words, the child is learning. It is unfortunate that the word 'educational' seems to equate to the word 'uninteresting' in people's mind. Educational toys are merely toys that are designed to promote learning in a fun way.
The right baby gift that is an educational toy will provide a child with the opportunity to learn new things, explore creativity, attempt movements and generally become an explorer. There are several different types of toys, and offering young children a different selection ensures that they get to explore in the way that best suits their learning style.
For example, a baby activity gym is like a little schoolhouse if it has colorful graphics, hanging toys, varied textures and ways for the child to generate sounds. Wooden or plastic blocks teach a child how to stack, but they also teach concepts like size and balance. Puzzles that make sounds when a piece is put into a correct place teachers matching, shapes and sounds.
Other educational toys that make a great baby gift include paint sets, music CDs created for babies and toddlers that love to dance, and of course, games. The exact educational toy that should be given as a gift will depend on the age of the child. Since learning is a process, it begins from day one and continues into adulthood, therefore the toys will 'age' with the child.
Learning Never Stops
Learning never stops, and that is particularly true for children. When you are trying to decide on an educational baby gift, just remember that children instinctively learn. You should choose age appropriate toys that promote sensory abilities. To stimulate learning, the toys need to have bold colors and interesting shapes. In addition, the toys need to be sturdy and reliable because a child who is learning is also actively using the toy on a regular basis.
Just because you are going to a traditional baby shower does not mean you must give a traditional gift like diapers or baby bottles. You can select educational toys and know that your baby gift includes the gift of learning. That is the most precious gift of all.