“Mommy, I wish I was older” lamented my youngest son.
“Honey, you just turned 6 a month ago. I think you should try to enjoy it, at least for a little while.”
I replied, knowing full well that he won’t. Ever since my son was old enough to realize that his older brother had rights and privileges that he didn’t, he’s been on a mission to fast forward through his youth. This kid walked early, talked early, and always desperately tried to keep up with older kids.
But his desire to grow up quickly didn’t stop there. He soon wanted to know what it was like to go to work, mow the lawn, and even drive a car. And because each of these mature activities must be experienced in their own time, I always try to provide my son with toys and resources that inspire imaginary play. Knowing that play is how he learns best, I’m notoriously choosy when it comes to BooBoo’s toys. I want to encourage real world discoveries with practical application whenever possible because when it comes to play, opportunities for learning are limitless – anytime, anywhere – especially with the right toys!
Just last weekend our family was preparing for a four-hour road trip, which I viewed as a great opportunity for uninterrupted play. But when it came time to select toys for the trip, I wasn’t quite sure if I could find a product that would hold my son’s attention, educate him, and keep him happy all at the same time. Thankfully, I discovered the VTech 3-in-1 Race & Learn. Able to easily convert from a car to a motorcycle to a jet with realistic sounds and vibrations on a variety of exciting courses that teach letters, numbers, counting, phonics, and so much more, this toy was truly a trifecta of learning fun!
The best part of all was that BooBoo was able fulfill his dream of “driving” like Daddy. He spent the majority of our trip mimicking every turn from the backseat with his own steering wheel – now this is the kind of backseat driver no one minds having around! I was all too pleased to allow my little wannabe grownup to drive to his heart’s content while concepts he learned at school were reinforced through imaginative play.
Parents, it’s time to expect more from our children’s toys. I subscribe to only two simple rules when it comes to selecting BooBoo’s toys, they must be versatile enough to hold his attention and designed to foster imagination. And why not? When our kids engage in interactive play, learning inevitably follows.