Children will play with toys, they always have and they always will (even in the world of ipads). Children tend to play with a new toy for a little while when it is still new once the toy is considered old, or a newer toy comes into the collection it falls by the side.
Some of the toys over time that I have found that I prefer for the kids are –
1) Don’t need batteries – The rate at which the batteries run flat can be annoying and turn out more expensive than the toy. I find its better to have toys that do not need batteries.
2) Have multiple uses – toys that can be used in multiple ways either because it has multiple parts or it stretches their imagination.
3) Preferably not made of plastic – there is fair mention of how dangerous plastics might be that wooden toys and other materials are preferable.
Looking for such toys overtime led me to Melissa & Doug – their toys tend to match most of the criteria above as most of their toys do not require batteries, encourage creative play, teaching children skills needed in a fun way and are mostly made of wood.
Some of my favourite Melissa & Doug toys are –
1) Learning how to perform basic skills such as lacing, buttoning, zipping Baisc skills board or Lace and Trace
2) Traditional Puzzles – they have a million different wooden puzzles, teaching numeracy, letters and words, farm animals etc. Jumbo puzzles and puzzles
3) Magnetic Jigsaw puzzles that allows you to change the arrangements. For example the dress up teddy bears
4) Creative but educational play such as learning time, learning to spell words
5) Arts and crafts sticker books Reusable sticker books and making faces
Konga carries a lot of Melissa & Doug toys, visit them here to view their options
Also visit Melissa & Doug for their toys and get some discounts