Suitable/Unsuitable Toys

When selecting toys, ask yourself these questions:

  • Are they safe?

    • Do they have sharp corners, shoot objects, are flammable, have easily lost pieces, use glass instead of plastic, etc.

  • Are they durable?

    • Toys are going to be used, hugged, dropped, thrown, chewed, etc. so they need to stand up under normal wear and tear.

  • Do they cost too much?

  • Are they age appropriate?

    • Toys should be selected according to the individual needs, abilities, physical, and emotional characteristics of the child.

  • Do they foster values you and the children’s parents don’t uphold?

  • Do they work?

    • Nothing causes loss of interest faster than a toy that fails to perform—it can also result in frustration, anger, and discouragement.

  • Do they capture the child’s interest?

    • You shouldn’t have to coax, force, or trick a child to playing w/ a toy.

    • Toys that can be used for a variety of purposes keep interest longer.

  • Are they fun?

  • Do they stimulate creative activity?

    • Do they toys offer problem-solving opportunities, leave room for imagination, or teach new skills?

  • Do they cause anger/frustration?

  • Do they involve interaction?

    • Wind-up or automated toys do the same thing over and over, and the child can’t direct the action.

  • Can they be kept clean easily?