Every day your child has hundreds of opportunities to play and choose the toys with which he wants to hang out. These toys are those with which he most identifies, the ones that most attract his attention or those that society predisposes to their consumption. As parents who try to keep everything under control for her sake, we are sometimes tempted to choose ourselves, including the toys she has to play with. However, we recommend that let your child choose his toysregardless of whether it is a boy or a girl. It's a good way to start educate in equality without promoting stereotypes.
The truth is that, until now, toys had been those great forgotten because their only purpose was merely the entertainment of the child. Although nothing is further from the truth, since it is not the only function.
Various studies show that toys are your child's first links with the world that surrounds you and will have a determining role in education both emotionally and cognitively as well as socially. Therefore, it is important that your child surrounds himself with a wide range of toys and decides freely. Society can influence us, but you as a parent have the last word in your child's education.
- On an emotional level
Toys give us subtle messages that influence their emotions in one way or another. For example, there are toys that help them calm down when they are afraid and others that stimulate and over-excite them. All of this defines the personality of your child.
On the other hand, for example, there are toys that subtly promote tenderness, nurturing, caring for others or ourselves, while there are others that exert pressure to be strong, dominate situations and competitiveness. So, toys determine how you feel and define how you should act according to a gender role depending on whether you are a boy or a girl.
- At a cognitive level
At a cognitive level, the stimulation that boys and girls receive from toys also stands out. It is not true that the differences are exclusively due to gender; in fact, the differences are often subtle. What really influences are the experiences (the imitation of their parents or the toys with which you stimulate your child).
As a general rule, girls are usually encouraged more with toys that promote language, emotional and social intelligence. An example of this are baby dolls. On the contrary, to children with those related to physical strength, visual and spatial area (fighting dolls, cars ...).
Therefore, it is logical to think that boys and girls will be more effective in one field or another. However, the rules are made to be broken and the brain plasticity that a baby has goes beyond gender.
- On a social level
There are certain times when boys and girls may have integration problems due to the toys they choose to play with. For example, if you are a child and you do not like soccer as they reach adolescence, you have more difficulty spending time with other children, since most of them have that sport as their favorite. Or in the case of girls, if you are a girl and you play soccer, you will also have the same problems adapting to the girls' games.
We are social beings by nature, therefore, your son or daughter needs to have a group to identify with. At first, this group is usually defined by gender and not by tastes and in many cases, it ends up being a difficulty when your tastes are contrary to those of your group of friends.
All these factors mentioned make inevitably are reflected in the lifestyle and future employment of your children. This explains why men tend to choose careers related to the scientific-technical area and women choose careers associated with education and the arts.
The influence that games have on your child is remarkable, however, there are a series of tips that you can follow so that this influence is in your favor and, in this way, educate your child equally.
1. Propose alternatives
If there are only pink games or balls at home, it is difficult for you to choose. Therefore, it is important to surround your child with all kinds of games and toys so that he can decide for him or herself.
2. Put your prejudices aside
Your child seeks to please you and when he sees your face of joy or displeasure when he approaches a kitchen or plays with construction games, it will provoke a reaction in him or her. Therefore, think about the values you want to convey to him and try to be consistent.
3. Stimulate their abilities and respect their tastes
Encourage him in any of his decisions and games, regardless of the toy he chooses. In this way, you will give him a positive message of love and support that will not only strengthen his personality, but will make your relationship even closer.
4. Be careful with your language
Saying things like: “this is a girl thing” or “boys don't cry” will influence how they perceive that game or toy. So it is important to be more aware of the comments you make to your child.
5. Bet on games that involve everyone
The most recent novelties are in board games, more and more there is a variety of games in which there are no boys or girls, nor a certain color; but stories to be played and have a fun time regardless of the genre. Fortunately, cooperative games are evolving for both children and adolescents and that favors integration, stimulation of all and non-competition.
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