ERIC Number: ED493098
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Toys: Universal Tools for Learning, Communication and Inclusion for Children with Disabilities
The toys children use during play are extremely important in their development. Anthropologists have found evidence of toys dating back as far as the first record of human life and among all cultures. Toys can be an entertaining and educational way for children to learn and respond to social situations, and they give children the opportunity to interact with other children. For children with disabilities, toys are not only a wonderful educational tool, but they can provide a unique opportunity for communication, self expression, and, especially, inclusion. On the surface, children playing with a toy seems simple, but in fact, they are learning a skill each time they play. Playing with toys can set the foundation for reading, writing, mathematical reasoning, social interaction, and creativity. Even though a child with a disability may have some limitations, he or she can still develop skills to use throughout life. Playtime also gives children, especially those with disabilities, the opportunity for success. Children who experience success during playtime want to repeat the experience, and they also want to take on a new or more difficult challenge during their next opportunity to play. This publication presents specific life skills children learn at play; provides ten tips on buying toys; describes categories of toys; and offers helpful suggestions for selecting the "right" toy according to age and skill level. [This document was prepared by the Simon Technology Center, a PACER Center project.]
Descriptors: Toys, Interpersonal Relationship, Interaction, Play, Disabilities, Skill Development, Psychomotor Skills, Self Concept, Experiential Learning, Guidelines
PACER Center. 8161 Normandale Boulevard, Minneapolis, MN 55437. Tel: 800-537-2237; Tel: 952-838-9000; Fax: 952-838-0199; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.pacer.org.
Publication Type: Guides - General; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: PACER Center, Inc., Minneapolis, MN.