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October 09, 2015

MacKenzie Masten

The Benefits of Toddler Games in Early Childhood Education

Topics: Learning Through Play

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The first two years of a child’s life are extremely important in terms of their development. During this time a toddler creates their first “sense of self”, where they are able to differentiate themselves from others. This development is fostered by a child’s first teacher - their parent. Parents are critical influencers and educators for the first part of a child’s life and therefore are an integral part of a child’s early learning process.

Parents put a lot of effort into finding the next great toy or game that will guarantee their toddler intelligence and a successful future. And they should! Research has found serious benefits in healthy play for toddlers, making play an integral piece of early childhood education.

Top 10 Benefits of Toddler Play

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As iPads, iPhones, and tablets are becoming common household items, the way we view early childhood education is evolving. Today the most popular medium for any child's play is on a screen. Online apps and games are great ways to educate and entertain children while giving parents a couple of minutes of well-deserved peace and quiet.

As convenient as they seem, there’s a necessary balance to be had between offline and online play. Online apps and games do stimulate certain areas of a toddler’s brain, but they are unsuccessful in targeting all developmental areas. Offline play, while more time-consuming for the parent, allows for a parent and child to engage all areas of their kid's brain and allows the family to learn together.

Finding a balance will allow your toddler to reap the benefits that come from both forms of play, but actively playing with your child will create lifelong memories that a computer screen cannot replicate.

So, to help you maximize early childhood education for your tot, we've put together a guide on the Best Online and Offline Ways to Play (Toddler Edition!). 

Offline Toddler Games:

Roll and Play

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“My 19 month old daughter is obsessed with this toy/game combo,”- Amazon reviewer.
The game itself highlights the different parts of development that come through play with color cards that correspond to actions, emotions, numbers, and animals.

Zingo! Sight Words
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“Perfect for kids learning to read & fun for the whole family!"Jenae, I Teach My Child

This game takes a fun spin on the classic game of Bingo! Children are able to learn through play while they begin to recognize sight words and develop their vocabulary.

Count Your Chickens

countyourchickens “I love that we can sit down together and play as a team. It is a great way for me to help her learn in a fun way."- Amazon reviewer.

Work together as a family to help mother hen bring her chicks back to the coop. This exciting family game teaches children how to work together against a common obstacle.

Online Toddler Games:

Endless Reader

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“A great learning method to make things enjoyable & educational at the same time!”Pimbernickel

This game is filled with friendly monsters who teach your child how to spell and read with exciting sight words that come to life right before your child’s very own eyes.

Writing Wizard

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“I watched my three-year-old progress from unrecognizable squiggles to readable letter forms on paper since he started playing."soralette

Writing wizard is deigned to help children learn how to trace, draw, and write through the power of the touch screen.

Sprinkle Junior

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"My three year old loves this game. It actually makes her think and try new things!"- JennyQ08

Sprinkle Junior is a water-physics puzzle that teaches your child the basics of physics through exciting puzzles and challenges. With STEM education on the rise, it’s no wonder this game has been downloaded by over 3 million people.  

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