Can "Educational Toys" Really Make Children Smarter-Woodmam

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The International Council of Toy Associations once conducted a test in which they showed a series of toys to 12 children between the ages of 3 and 8 to observe their reactions. The room in which the test was conducted was individually decorated with some of the most common toys: a hodgepodge of Lego puzzle blocks, wooden blocks and dominoes, rag dolls and other stuffed toys, jigsaw puzzles, and stacking blocks, miniature tents, and some electronic toys.

When the experiment began, the two boys immediately went straight to the Lego blocks; the three girls began to play with Leo with a stuffed octopus toy; and a 5-year-old, wearing a baseball cap backward, went straight to the pile of electronic toys. He turned on a toy laptop computer and began tapping the letters on the screen on the keyboard. Each time he got it right, the computer would ring. He was excited at first, but after a few minutes, he wandered over to the Lego pile as well. Then a 4-year-old girl picked up a brightly colored electronic toy box and started tapping the symbols on it, and the box would make a tiny sound and read out the corresponding English words in turn, but the little girl soon lost interest. Finally, she announced that "talking to people is more interesting", and then got up to play with the rag doll.

As the hours passed, more than half of the children crowded around the Lego blocks. They sat there, brows furrowed, engrossed in putting together cars, spaceships, and various houses. It was quiet and friendly, stopping every now and then to show off their work, look for a specially shaped block, or to help the younger kids snap two difficult blocks together. And the electronic toys were abandoned to the side, and the children have long forgotten they existed. In the final interview, a 6-year-old girl said, "We have a lot of electronic toys at home. But it's no fun to play with them after a while because they are always the same, without any changes. I like toys that can build different things."

In fact, as early as the 19th century, there are critics who warned that: too active toys will create children who are not active enough, and the more imagination and ingenuity that inventors put into toys, the less space left for children's imagination and creativity.

Children's creativity and imagination are now valued by parents, but we overlook the ability of toys to bring out the creativity and imagination in our children when choosing toys.

So do the various educational toys we buy for our children really make them smarter?

According to Howard Gardner, a world-renowned educational psychologist, the definition of intelligence is too narrow and does not truly reflect a person's true strengths. A person's intelligence should not be assessed by the amount of knowledge he or she possesses, but by his or her ability to solve problems. On this basis, he proposes eight major human bits of intelligence: linguistic intelligence, logical-numerical intelligence, spatial intelligence, motor intelligence, musical intelligence, interpersonal intelligence, introspective intelligence, and natural observational intelligence.

According to Mr. Howard's theory, education experts believe that the development of multiple intelligences should start at an early age, so parents choose relevant educational toys according to different bits of intelligence in order to stimulate their children's intelligence. But until now there has been no direct evidence to prove that educational toys make children smarter.

But there is no doubt that educational toys can stimulate children's imagination and creativity.

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