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Not Toying Around: When education, exercise and toys meet in the middle, only good things happen

When it comes to buying toys for their kids, parents probably find the gift somewhere between mindless and meaningful.
The former comes in the form of parents being pushed in a particular buying direction as far as selecting the toys their kids want most, regardless of the whether or not the product or item has many, if any, redeeming qualities or an educational acumen to them.
Some parents, to the credit of online consumer reports, trending and mass marketing, typically succumb to the temptation of taking the road less traveled when it comes to toy buying in general.
That practice probably leads to a lot of happy faces, but the parent also has a responsibility to prudently make purchases for their kids. That means putting forth a propensity for not only delivering the toys children want but splicing in products that suggest education and exercise, two important attributes of a well-rounded child that often are overlooked.
Of course, if your kids have zero interest in music, for example, then buying them a brand new trumpet will resonate more as noise than delight. But let's say they can't get enough in the way of tantalizing tunes; that gives mom and dad the opportunity to enlighten their child with more than just an easy to buy MP3 player or iPod. Those are great gifts but hardly promote musical acumen but rather more of a laid back approach to musical cues.

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That's not to suggest all of technology is bad; it just depends on how it is implemented.
Rock Band, for example, is a good start but after all the savvy marketing and video game platform smoke clears, is simply a plastic guitar or drum set that is more hand and eye coordination as opposed to promoting the art of learning how to play.
Looking toward your smart phone may be the most intelligent way to go but not quite in the way you'd think. Sure, there are plenty of apps for your tablet or smart phone that let you play the piano right on the screen. But buying your kids a stocking stuffer in the form of JoyTunes takes that mentality a step further. JoyTunes is an app that not only encourages but teaches kids how to play the piano. That convenient step by step approach does a world of wonder to promote music in a way that an MP3 player simply can't duplicate.
From music to simply getting moving, a lost art form centers on activity oriented toys for your children. Little kids or toddlers tend to get bikes, especially around the time they first start learning to pedal for the first time. But somewhere between your very first bike and the dawn of discovering video games, the penchant of parents to keep buying bicycles gets lost amidst an array of Madden football games.
In addition to buying something as simple as a bike, family vacations find themselves at the bottom of holiday gifts, which is unfortunate. Family trips can be tailored to be not only enjoyable but educational at the core. A one-dimensional toy or game pale in comparison to the memories created and cultivated as part of a truly memorable vacation.
Plenty of options abounds, whether mom and dad pack up the family vehicle for a trip the Grand Canyon or take vacationing a step further with something abroad; the kids certainly will appreciate the excitement and parents will relish the time together as a family.
Excitement abounds on any number of unique vacations, perhaps a house swap or something a little more splendid or distinct, such as a safari for kids. That may sound a little far fetched but locations such as Samara Private Game Reserve in South Africa is surprisingly kid oriented with the aforementioned safaris for children and an up close and personal look and understanding of local wildlife. Imagine comparing a PlayStation with being stationed that close to nature.
Getting creative when it comes toys for the kids will allow you to buck the trend of rudimentary toys and gifts in exchange for something that sails well outside the boring box.

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