Admittedly I am a new mom. I’ve been a mom for 2 years now, to a now 10 and an 8 year old. Yep, we are doing this parenting thing adoptive-style! Over the Christmas holiday this year my sisters-in-law, two of whom were expecting their 2nd and 4th child, asked me what is the most surprising thing about being a parent?
Oh, the answers that flooded my mind. I mean when you are dealing with 6 years of temporary care history, ADHD times two, diagnosed intellectual disabilities, anxiety and survival patterns, being a mom in that kind of circumstance presents a ton of surprises.
But what came out of my mouth was the most surprising thing. “What surprised me the most is how quickly we go through toys.” Are you kidding me? The first thing I say is something trivial and superficial? I must be a crazy person. But after more thought a question comes to mind – was it trivial? Was it really superficial? I mean isn’t that a reality we all deal with in this fast paced, at your fingertips, microwaveable society – this disposable view of our world? Don’t we all see this same message getting through loud and clear in the hearts and minds of our kids as we examine their play habits?
This is why I love the discovery of magnetic tiles – you know those building shapes with connecting magnets on all sides enabling 3D building options. Honestly, it’s the one toy that gets played with daily. It’s true, kids love to build at any age, and these magnetic tiles have lasted reaching double digits and even the attention of my 40 year old husband! There are so many ways to enjoy this lasting toy.
My daughter builds a horse barn to practice what she is learning about taking care of horses from her equine therapy sessions. Her plush horses roam around her fenced property which she created with magnetic tiles. My son does everything with his magnetic tiles. He loves to build cities, ramps and roadways with his matchbox cars, entire lands, including trees and huts for his safari animals, volcanoes and more for his dinosaurs, animal carriers and worlds for his multitude of plush animals, and oh how he loves to turn off the lights and build with his flashlight – and the translucent tiles are awesome for this kind of play!
Of course there is this entire other world of greatness with magnetic tiles – with a new emphasis on STEM learning in the Common Core Curriculum, magnetic tiles seem to be the go-to toy for learning. Why? Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics have become a major focus in education. We have seen a dramatic improvement in our children’s academic performance since these toys have been added to their collection.
So while we are trying to find tangible ways to help our kids find the value in patience, loyalty, perseverance and effort, it’s nice to have something in the toy box that supports this effort.