By the time your child is five, he or she is ready to take big leaps and will be on the verge of entering formal school. For parents it may seem like they are cooperative and independent suddenly. You will start witnessing a routine along with increased curiosity and affection towards individuals. But, this does not mean that your role is over in helping them develop their skills.
The child needs to engage in constructive activities at home for which the ideal solution is to have appropriate toys to play with. Inappropriate toys can prove to be distracting socially and mentally.
Let us look at some toys which are age appropriate for a 5-year old and a perfect fit to build necessary skills:
- Animal Blocks- This jigsaw puzzle is six times the fun as each side of the cube can create a different animal image. Children can choose any one animal puzzle they want to solve and thus try to arrange the blocks. It is challenging and exciting to sort blocks and get sides and sequences correctly. Analysing the visual sides develops their logical skills. Focus, retention of information and logic also improves their cognitive ability.When the child completes the picture by arranging each piece helps in developing fine motor skills.
- Subtraction Truck- With this toy, children can enjoy playing with a wheeled object while also learning numeral values and the power of subtraction. This phenomena is fascinating and yet simplified in the form of a dump truck that clearly shows the child that to subtract is to remove or 'take away'. Children are fascinated with what is 'leftover' in the truck, thus completing the process of subtraction. This toy improves the number skills in the child as they learn to understand addition and subtraction. Opening and shutting of gates in the truck developes fine motor skills.
- Nesting Hen- With this highly engaging toy, children get a chance to think of creative ways to balance eggs on the back of the hen. This augments fine motor skills and improves dimension awareness, thus developing their concentration levels. Nesting the pieces in the toy gives a way in the development of fine motor skills.
- Hopping Number Line- Children love making the frog jump positions using their hands to reach the desired leaf. Each point on the graduated number line corresponds to a real number and the hopping frog helps them understand that addition is to move forward as opposed to subtraction, which is jumping backward. The toy simplifies abstract arithmetic operations. Moving the frog along the line makes the child develop fine motor skills along with promoting writing skills .
The above toys are an effective way in which parents can augment skills built in the school. Since all of these toys involve intensive finger and hand usage, it will help in building concentration, besides ensuring clear conceptual understanding which is at times a little difficult to be achieved at school.“Play is the brain’s favorite way of learning.” -Diane Ackerman