Welcome to Illinois

Same toys, “different” people

Posted in Attitudes to disability, Toys by Matt at WelcometoIllinois on September 3, 2008

Toys-R-Us has published its Toy Guide for Differently-abled Kids, which provides a list of top ten tips for buying toys for children with special needs and a wide selection of toys with details of how they can help with a child’s development related to categories such as auditary, visual, and language skills as well as self-esteem and social skills.

It covers issues I have been thinking about as we begin to think about buying toys for our baby and looks like a really useful guide. One thing that bothers me about it is the title, athough it could have been worse (at least they didn’t use “special” kids).

Looking through the guide (PDF) it occured to me that these are not toys for “differently-abled” kids however. They are just toys. I couldn’t find a single toy directed specifically at children with special needs (although that might be a good thing). The only difference is that some childern might use them at a different age to others, or in a slightly different way.

Don’t get me wrong. I think this is a really good, well-designed guide. The information that is provided about how the toys can help a child’s development should be of interest to any parent, and certainly would have been to me when looking at toys for my little boy when he was born. I just don’t understand how it relates specifically to any particular children, “differently-abled” or otherwise.

Advertisements

4 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Rickismon said, on September 4, 2008 at 10:23 am

    It is pure commercialism.

    For a parent REALLY wanting an idea of what toys to use, check out (worth buying) Woodbine house’s books on gross/ fine motor developement in kids with DS , and the language of toys

  2. welcometoillinois said, on September 4, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Thanks for the tip. Here’s the link
    http://www.woodbinehouse.com/

  3. […] the right toy for a diabled child I was previously critical of Toys-R-Us’s “Toy Guide for Differently-abled Kids”, arguing that it was simply […]

  4. […] the right toy for a disabled child I was previously critical of Toys-R-Us’s “Toy Guide for Differently-abled Kids”, arguing that it was simply […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: