Whether you’re a new mom looking to curate the perfect toy collection for your little one, or a seasoned parent seeking to upgrade their child's playtime essentials, one question inevitably arises - wood or plastic toys? Each option carries its unique appeal, with wood offering a timeless charm and plastic boasting durability and vibrant colors. As parents, we all desire to make thoughtful toy purchases that engage and captivate our children's imaginations while ensuring their safety. So, which material will you choose to create those cherished playtime memories?
Our vote goes to wood. We’ve rounded up 7 reasons why you should consider using wood over plastic for future toy purchases.
1. Wooden toys promote creative, imaginative play.
Wooden toys are often considered “open-ended” which allow for exploration, problem-solving and creativity. These types of toys provide a calm learning environment where kids can play and learn new concepts without the pressure and overstimulation of noisy, battery-operated toys. The goal of these toys is for the *child* to direct play, not the other way around.
Our wooden stepping stones, for example, promote endless ways to play including (but not limited to): developing paths, obstacle courses, pretending the floor is lava, follow the leader, hopscotch, and MUCH more!
2. Wood toys encourage problem-solving and sensory development.
Many wood toys are designed to promote learning and provide educational benefits to children. These toys encourage active engagement and foster cognitive development, enhancing critical thinking skills. Moreover, the unique textures and enchanting aromas of wooden toys stimulate a child's senses, contributing to their sensory growth.
3. Wooden toys are crafted with natural + safe materials.
Wooden toys are free of toxins and chemicals that have been found in some plastic toys, such as BPA, PVC and other added phthalates. Children’s exposure to these harmful chemicals is a growing concern among parents, as research shows that they have the ability to mimic or suppress hormones and disrupt normal development and growth.
Toys at Poppyseed Play are both non-toxic and safety certified.
4. Wood toys are sustainable and good for the environment.
Wooden toys offer a sustainable alternative to their plastic counterparts, alleviating the burden on natural resources. Not only are they biodegradable, but they also leave no trace of environmental pollution upon disposal. Moreover, the manufacturing of wood toys involves fewer chemicals and additives, ensuring both the safety of children and the preservation of our precious environment.
5. Wooden toys are durable and long-lasting.
There’s a reason wooden toys often become family heirlooms, passed down between generations. If crafted from quality wood, these toys are sustainable and much sturdier, making them a no-brainer for moms looking for toys with long-term use.
Plastic toys can be made cheaply, which not only poses the risk of them breaking easily, but also leads to choking hazards and sharp edges. Though the initial cost of wooden toys may be higher to start, they are more likely to withstand frequent use and be played with for years to come.
6. Wooden toys are more aesthetically pleasing.
It’s no secret, as a parent, that your house can quickly and easily become overrun with toys. While this may not bother some - especially if you have a designated play space - many prefer to opt for toys that add to the aesthetics of their home.
Maria Montessori also believed that beautiful toys enhanced the experience and environment of a child. The natural tones of wooden toys are calming, simplistic and free of distractions. Goodbye to bright, shiny eye sores. Hello to beautifully-crafted toys that flex your tastes, while your little one flexes their muscles.
7. Wood has antibacterial properties, unlike plastic.
One thing we know about kids - how easily they become sick! Whether it’s from touching a surface, or putting something in their mouth, the illnesses often appear never-ending. Unlike plastic, wood has antibacterial properties. This means it’s better at preventing the growth of bacteria and spread of germs.
While we don’t expect you to turn around and throw out all of your children’s plastic toys - we do think it’s important to consider limiting their use and focus more on toys that offer entertainment, safety, and longevity. After all, saving the planet one toy at a time can be our little secret. 😉