When you walk down the aisles at Wal-Mart or any major toy store these days, you are generally surrounded by one thing: PLASTIC. Color-coated by gender, extremely stereotyped, low quality, sometimes dangerous (dyes, chemicals used in fire proofing, etc.) “toys”.
What happened to high quality, long-lasting toys that nurture a child’s imagination?
(I’m going to have to do a whole post on Playsilks because they are just so awesome! ❤ http://www.bellalunatoys.com/sarah-s-silks-enchanted-playsilks.html)
Well it looks like most of these toy crafters have taken to the internet to sell their wares. 😀
I’ve found a few really good sites that seem to offer high quality stuff. While it is a little more expensive than the stuff you’d find at Wal-Mart, it will definitely last longer and can be used for other kids as well.
Most of these stores come under the titles “wooden toys”, “Waldorf toys”, or “European toys”. These toys are generally made of wood and other natural materials such as silk.
Some of my favorites.
Nest offers European-style toys as well as Waldorf toys. Based in Canada, they ship to both the US and Canada.
Bella luna toys offers Waldorf toys, natural toys, and wooden toys which nurture the imagination.
For Small Hands offers Montessori toys that foster a child’s sense of independence and seeing work as part of play.
Waldorf and Montessori are different education styles that focus more on child-led learning, hands-on activities, and natural development rather than curriculum based learning like traditional schools. We will discuss this more in the future as well.