If you're in a position to buy toys for young children, there's no reason that you should feel constrained to stick with mass produced and unoriginal toys that you find in the major toy stores. When you're looking for toys for a young child, you are looking for something that will be both durable and mentally engaging. To find toys that match this description, you may have to search harder, but the toys you discover will provide your children with years of enjoyment.

Just because you are looking for educational toys, that doesn't mean that your children can't have a good time playing with them! While keeping in mind that different age levels have different needs, look for a toy that will challenge your tot. Even if your child might need your help at first, you can't go wrong with a puzzle that is designed for their age group. Puzzles encourage fine motor development and problem solving skills for small children. Don't forget to look for unique puzzles that might appeal to your child, either; for instance the toy company Melissa & Doug offers a wide variety of colorful, detailed puzzles that are both durable and fun to play with. They provide puzzles from ages 3 and up that are theme specific. For instance your child may be interested in horses, farm animals or dinosaurs. If so you can find puzzles that are made with their interest in mind. Melissa & Doug also provide challenging toys that teach small children how to work with zippers, snaps, buckles, even sneaker lacing!

For an older child who might prefer to play independently, why not consider getting them an art set? If you can encourage artistic achievement at a young age, you can help your child develop a lifelong appreciation for creativity, something that will serve them well no matter what they end up doing. Find art kits that are durable and offer a wide variety of material to work with. You may wish to take your child to a place that sells art supplies for children and walk around with them, seeing whether they are more interested in painting, beading or collaging.

One thing to consider when buying toys for your child is the material. While of course you know that small parts can be a choking hazard, check the durability of the toy in question. If it is made of fragile plastic, there's a chance your child could step on it and make it splinter. In terms of durable toys, you can always go with the traditional route of toys made out of wood. Wood can be easily cleaned and will stay in good condition for years with a minimum amount of care.

When searching for toys for the child in your life, keep in mind that the choices you make now can affect them in the years to come; make sure their toys will not only amuse them, but help them grow.

For educational toys and unique gifts, Party Gift Mart is a great educational online toy and gift shop that provides birthday gift ideas for kids and tots.
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