Article by Sue Sinclair, Vancouver mom and owner of Raspberry Kids, which carries lots of green toys.
“Wood” You Like Green Toys?
Toys come in all shapes and sizes, and for all ages and stages. I’ve never been a fan of “plastic fantastic”, noisy battery-operated toys, or toys that require a PhD to successfully remove them from their twist ties and excessive packaging. The good news is, there are alternatives! Lots and lots of them – and wooden toys are at the top of our play list. We love seeking out wood toys based on their design, aesthetics, their natural simplicity and overall feel. We wood love to introduce you to some of our favorite wooden toy brands!
At Raspberry Kids we absolutely adore Plan Toys, which are made from sustainable rubber wood, vegetables dyes and even their packaging is all recyclable. Plan Toys is a very innovative company and every year they add to their collection. You can find green toys for early development such as blocks and shape sorters, as well as many role play products such as play food, toy kitchens, doll houses, planes, trains and automobiles.
Other amazing wooden toys brands include Tegu, which is a gorgeous and modernized take on wooden blocks that allow for hours of imaginative play and endless creativity. Tegu has the added element of internal magnets that make this line very innovative and intriguing for kids of all ages! This fair trade brand employs Hondurans and every time a Tegu product is purchased, they either send a child to school or plant a tree. These are green toys you can feel good about.
Imagination and Longevity
A fine example of wood craftsmanship is the Geared for Imagination Topozoo line. Made in the USA, these toys inspire hundreds of options to create characters and embrace the make believe. A customer of ours once said her young daughter hadn’t yet taken to this particular toy and we had a long discussion about how a child’s interest in particular toys wax and wane from time to time, but how we both felt it was important to surround our children with products we had chosen conscientiously based on how they were made, what they were made from and that this would help them form a similar appreciation for products of this nature (pun intended).
What we also adore about wooden toys is their longevity. Whether it be a dollhouse, a play kitchen, or a puzzle, this material stands the test of time and the rigorous use of a child’s daily play. Of the many toys in our house that we have either purchased or been given, it is the wooden toys that still look like brand new and will be passed down to our children’s children. As with anything, not all wooden toys are created equally. You still need to pay attention to details like what sorts of paints are being used, the overall quality of the piece, how and where the products are manufactured and so on. While wooden toys are generally more expensive than toys of the plastic variety, the old adage of you get what you pay for certainly rings very true. We are big proponents of seeking out and buying quality and conscientious green toys that will provide hours and hours of play over the course of many, many years.
We hope you love wooden toys as much as we do!
What are your favourite green toys?
Sue is a Vancouver mom of two “Raspberry Kids”, and is often seen driving around town in her logo wrapped Raspberry Mobile. If you see her in that vehicle, don’t hesitate to say hello!