By Jack Placidi
With the work-from-home situation still persisting from last year, parents have had to juggle their own work life while keeping their child entertained. Impressionable children, especially younger ones, often like to mimic what they see their parents doing around the house, be it role-play or interacting with the same items that adults use. As much as a child might be entertained by a parent’s key chain or going through a closet to try on different clothes, there are many toy options available out there that can help provide some “disguised play” for kids. Being a media production manager with aNb Media/TTPM, I see a lot of the latest toys and games pass through our office that fit the bill, and I assist in the filming and editing of these products to highlight everything they have to offer.
The Genius of Play is helping families incorporate more play into their daily routines through its upcoming “Genius Play Hacks” campaign, taking place this spring. This new campaign offers visitors a way to encourage families to use their imaginations and think creatively about how they can play together every day. Throughout March and April, The Genius of Play will feature play ideas sponsored by member companies that integrate their product along with a fun and inventive way to play with it.
As we focus on #GeniusPlayHacks this month with the Toy Association, below are some of the latest toys TTPM has reviewed that can provide some play for your child that will make them feel like Mommy and/or Daddy around the house.
When it comes to business attire, the typical tie one might wear also makes for an alluring play thing for baby. To prevent any tugging and pulling to choke a parent while they work, Tasty Tie has created a play-safe tie for baby to wear for their own important chewing and teething business. Great for gnawing and tactile play, this cute tie will give little ones their own professional attire to chew on.
Be it the shininess or the jingle-jangle sounds, key chains are always tempting for babies to grab and play with themselves. To give them the same type of play, PlayMonster has a cute little owl and snail with loops and clackers to provide the same type of engagement a little one might get with a key chain, but in a safe and cleaner way.
Parents can put baby in the stroller, and now kids can put their dolls in one too. Even the simple act of caring for a child can be expanded upon with this role-play accessory that lets any child be the parent in their mind. Even more impressive is the fact that this comes in two pieces with the stroller AND the carrier, adding more imaginative possibilities for doll care.
A lot of parents have had to utilize their homes as office spaces during quarantine. This set is ideal for giving kids their own office tools for the modern-day play atmosphere, like a laptop with felt windows, headset, and a trusty coffee! Kids can run their own imaginary business while the adults are working too.
Laugh & Learn Lil’ Gamer – Fisher-Price
After a busy day of work, some adults like to play video games as a way to relax, and with this cute mimic of a handheld console, children can join their gamer parents side by side. Everything about the Lil’ Gamer has been crafted with great detail, from the pixelated onscreen art, to the chip tune sounds that it plays as kids press the buttons and simultaneously learn about numbers, colors, and the alphabet.