One of the perks of being a grandparent is getting to experience life through the eyes of a child again. Play is a great way to connect with your grandkids when they come for a visit. Whether it be a gift for the holidays, a birthday or just for fun, what better way to encourage play than with toys?
Toys have changed a lot over the last few decades, and there are so many options on the market. Unless there's a specific request, it's hard to know what kind of toys to buy. Age, interest and budget come into play, and you want to make sure the toys you pick are appropriate for that sweet grandchild of yours. You also want to ensure you buy something that will be loved — not just tossed to the side in two minutes. Here is a list of five types of toys your grandkids are sure to love and enjoy!
LEGO makes toys that encourage imaginative play for all ages. One thing that makes LEGOs so great is the endless possibilities they offer. LEGO has several styles of building blocks that cover a wide range of ages and interests.
LEGO DUPLO blocks are larger-size blocks made for children aged 1.5 years and up. These blocks are easier for little hands to build and take apart. LEGO DUPLO blocks come in themed sets that include everything from farms and hospitals to superheroes and princesses.
Traditional LEGO bricks are brightly colored building materials that are great for imaginative play and encouraging creativity for children age 6 and up. These LEGO sets also come in a variety of sizes and themes that make them an open-ended play option for most budgets.
LEGOs are great for building elaborate stories and creations in a small space, including an assisted living apartment. You might even create a small LEGO town that you can add to every time your grandkids visit. The stories and interactions had within your LEGO town will create fond memories and fun topics of conversation for you and grandchildren.
Board games get the whole family connected and having a good time. Because there are hundreds of options, you can find something to suit just about every member of the family. Some classic board games are still very popular, such as checkers, chess and backgammon. Other popular games that haven’t gone out of style, like Monopoly, The Game of Life and Clue, are great for older grandkids that may have outgrown traditional toys. And for the youngest family members, there are options like Hi Ho Cherry-o and Hoot Owl Hoot.
Card games may be good options as on-the-go toys. Word games, like Quiddler, are great because they're fun and educational. Many toy companies make game-specific card games with neat pictures on the cards, which can engage younger players. Having cards in the shape of fish, for example, make a game of Go Fish that much more fun. You can’t go wrong with a classic deck of cards, either, or a book of word searches.
If the weather is nice, taking a board game out on the deck with your grandkids can be a fun way to enjoy the sunshine and the mountain views from the Collinwood assisted living community.
Magnatiles are another type of open-ended building material that are a huge hit with kids of all ages. These small tiles connect to each other magnetically and are easy for anyone to put together. Since the tiles are magnetic, any other toys with magnets can attach to them.
Magnatiles come in many set options. With a lower priced budget, you can always start small and add more tiles over time.
A great activity to do with Magnatiles is building a tower as tall as your grandchild. Snap a picture, and you’ve got a great keepsake you can re-create every year.
Art supplies are a great gift option that offer hours of playtime. Art supplies can include everything from Elmer’s glue, construction paper and markers to clay, paint and glitter. Even with a simple collection of art supplies, the possibilities of creating are practically limitless. Your grandchild could even discover a new talent or find a hobby that can last into adulthood.
If you gift your grandchild art supplies, ask them to mail you a piece of their artwork every month. This is a great way for them to connect with you, and soon, you'll have quite the collection of masterpieces.
If you’re looking for a larger gift, an outdoor toy may be the way to go. Sandboxes and small ride-on toys are great options for the little ones in your life. For older grandkids, a ropes course or tree swing could offer hours of playtime.
Have your grandchild ask their parent to video record them next time they use their outdoor toy. They'll love showing off their new tricks to you virtually.
Toys are a great way to connect with the little ones in your life. Next time you're looking for a new toy to gift to the grandkids, check out one of these five awesome options!