The Christmas season is a special time of year which sees friends and family united together to share good will and happy moments. The idea of giving is central to the Christmas experience, and gifts provide a fantastic way of displaying affection and appreciation of our loved ones – especially our children. When it comes to younger children, many of us want a Christmas present which is sustainably and ethically made, but also engages the child for long periods of time, helping to keep them occupied and mentally stimulated, whilst providing them with much needed entertainment.
Christmas Shopping in 2020
The past year has been particularly unusual for us all for various reasons, primarily due to the unprecedented outbreak of COVID-19, which led to strict social distancing measures and the closure of schools and nurseries earlier in the year. Many parents struggled with the demands of working from home whilst meeting the needs of young children and as a consequence, a number of parents have had to think carefully about how to keep their children entertained at home, and how to ensure they don’t fall behind developmentally.
Keeping Young Minds Busy
It is important that children have access to both fun and educational toys which will help with their development, the circumstances of lockdown this year have made many of us realise just how important it is to have good quality toys within the home for our children, making the choice of gift for this year’s Christmas all the more important.
What Makes A Good Toy?
A good toy should be appealing to the child, first and foremost – most children enjoy toys which are fun and engaging to play with and offer an attractive design, often with bright colours. It should also stimulate creative play, motor skills, problem solving, role play, sharing, verbal communication and language skills.
A ‘good toy’ is often one which appeals to a wider age range, where older siblings can get involved in play with their younger siblings and their toys. Children of an older age, 7-8 years often still enjoy playing in the kitchen, dolls house etc. Parents and carers are looking for more inspirational ways of entertaining their children at home, ideas and activities are important and these should stimulate thoughts and behaviour as well as being fun and attractive.
Young children love to be creative and imaginative with their play, toys which replicate everyday life often provide the best tools for this type of play – for example, a toy kitchen, toy dolls house or toy shop can provide hours of entertainment and foster unlimited creativity.
Our Top Christmas Toys
We believe the best types of Christmas toys are ones which not only promote imaginative play and support developmental skills, they are also engaging for a wider age range and involve creative play which can be interactive or individual.
It was from the design of the first doll’s house that the Le Toy Van company was born, back in 1995 when Georges Le Van designed the first dolls house in his garden shed. This universally popular gift benefits from a wide use age range – from tiny tots to older children up to 8 or 9 years.
The dolls house is also a feature item within the children’s play area which can be kept years after the child has grown out of it. Our range of dolls houses are designed to encourage fine motor skills, creativity, problem solving, pretend play, role play, sharing, verbal communication and language skills.
Our Dolls House Selection
The spectacular Palace Dolls House is the grandest house designed by Le Toy Van, it was the winner of the 2019 Junior Design Award and is the largest in our Daisylane collection. Ethically made from sustainable wood and decorated with non-toxic paints, the gender-neutral design encourages this toy to be shared between siblings, providing hours of fun and creativity as well as helping to refine coordination and fine motor skills.
Another of our grand dolls houses – the 4 storey Cherry Tree wooden dolls house is ethically made from natural sustainable materials and offers beautiful, unique decorations in each room, including functioning shutters and back windows. It also inspires creative and imaginative play as well as developing coordination and speech development.
Winner of the Loved By Children 2015 Award, the Sweetheart Cottage comes complete with 37 pieces of furniture and provides hours of imaginative scenario fun whilst promoting hand to eye skills. This mid-size wooden dolls house fits well into smaller play areas and is ethically made from sustainable materials with a child safe design. The house is fully painted and decorated with hearts and flower motifs using non-toxic paints, it also features opening shutters, windows, doors and a glittery scalloped roof.
The perfect gift for inspiring story-telling and imaginative play, the Bluebird Dolls House is beautifully painted in a soft pastel colour scheme, with different illustrations in each room. It features opening and closing shutters, windows, a door, and roof, and comes complete with a 37-piece furniture set.
The Mayberry Manor Dolls House is a 3 storey ethically and sustainably made wooden dolls house, fully painted and decorated dolls with attic windows, a chimney stack, large bay windows and opening sash windows. This gift will promote endless hours of creative and imaginative play both individually and interactively.
The beautiful Bay Tree Doll House is a fully painted and decorated 3 storey dolls house with a feature circular window. The set also includes a staircase, loft ladder and opening windows, making it perfect for a creative setting helping young children to build skills such as turn taking, speech and language, and social interaction.
The ever popular Sophie’s Wooden Doll House was awarded Best Doll House and Winner of the Right Start Toy Award, the Top 100 Baby Products and the Toy Talk Award.
This large 3 storey classic dolls house is beautifully decorated in a white and rose-pink colour scheme, each room has a different decoration scheme with detailed wallpaper which children enjoy identifying – this helps to develop creativity, social skills, and language development. The house also features a glittery scalloped roof, front porch, as well as opening and closing shutters and windows.
Role Play Christmas Toys
Our number 1 seller worldwide, the Doctor’s medical bag has always proved immensely popular. Part of the Honeybake range, this vintage style set comes complete with an array of wooden medical instruments which include a thermometer, syringe, toy stethoscope, scissors, blood pressure gauge, an ear scope and two medicine bottles. Offering a gender-neutral design, this set inspires fun and creative story telling and can be enjoyed individually or interactively to help develop speech and language as well as turn taking skills. This set was winner of the Doctor’s Toy Award 2016, the Slow Toy Award 2014, the Junior Design Award 2014 and is also recommended by the experts at Fundamentally Children 2016.
The two-in-one reversible wooden Shop and Café stall has won several awards including the Right Start Award 2017, the Junior Design Award Best Toy Design 3-5+ Bronze 2017 and was recommended by the experts at Fundamentally Children (Good Toy Guide).
The shop and café are fitted on wheels with 2 stabilisers for easy mobility and include a bell to ring and chalkboard signs. This is the perfect role play toy which encourages creativity, social and language development. It is exceptionally well-adapted for interactive play helping children to develop turn taking skills and is made from durable, sustainable, repurposed rubberwood.
What child doesn’t love a play kitchen? Having a play kitchen can help your child to develop valuable life skills and cultivate a passion for cooking. It is also an excellent way to develop dexterity, coordination, imagination, and creativity, whilst ensuring your child is engaged and busy for extended periods of time. This toy can be played interactively or individually.
The Oxford wooden kitchen features an oven with an opening door and hob with turning knobs, as well as a microwave, sink and clock with movable wooden hands. The set comes complete with utensils which include a spoon, whisk, and salt & pepper.
Further Recommended Christmas Present Toys 2020
How We Can Help
We believe that childhood should be a special time of life where the imagination is able to run free – childhood development is essential for setting the foundation for lifelong learning – it is a vital stage of the child’s life which should be filled full of positive experiences and lots of play. A happy childhood is the foundation for wellbeing in later life. Our sustainable and ethically made wooden toys are designed to encourage creative and long-lasting play to support the developmental phases and provide hours of fun. For more information on our products, do not hesitate to get in touch.