Do you still remember the best moments of your childhood? Eating sweets on the sly and hiding the wrappers under the cupboard or using chairs and sheets to make dens. But wasn’t it especially great to return home with twigs in our hair and smiles on our faces having been out playing on a summer’s evening? All that fun climbing trees, building dams, watching ants carry a massive caterpillar, holding snail races and snitching fruit from the neighbour’s garden. Nature offers endless opportunities for play.
Full schedules, the pressure to perform and digital media increasingly dominate the lives of our children nowadays. Outside of school, children spend their time at music classes and private lessons or in front of the television. There’s little time left to play outdoors. Some see nothing beyond their own four walls, school and the supermarket anymore. Many city kids end up believing hens lay colourful eggs. They don’t realise the really exciting adventures awaiting them right outside their front door.
A survey of children aged six to thirteen in 1990 showed that almost three quarters of them spent time outside every day – this figure had dropped to less than 50 percent in 2003. Of 1,000 seven to twelve-year-olds surveyed in the UK, more than 50 percent said they were forbidden from climbing trees or playing in a nearby park on their own.
Toy Trend 2018: Explore Nature
The Explore Nature trend hopes to remind people that the biggest playground and most exciting stories await directly outside our front door. Children should be encouraged to discover nature and its inhabitants for themselves and experience and investigate the world with all of their senses.
How many legs does a beetle actually have? How does a fish move? What kinds of creatures live on a leaf?
With the beaker magnifier from Haba’s Terra Kids series, kids can use the integrated magnifying glass to marvel at and closely examine beetles, tadpoles, leaves and fossils.
Crafty kids aged eight and older can make a little sailing ship with the complete carving set from Kosmos. The set contains a children’s carving knife, lime wood block and detailed instructions.
Besides learning basic cutting techniques and how to work with a natural material like wood, kids also get so much enjoyment out of putting the ship on water for the first time and marvelling at how it stays afloat.
Children can demonstrate their green-fingered skills through play with the ladybird products from moses.Verlag. From a gardening apron, matching gloves and child-friendly gardening tools through to a grow-your-own edible flower set and watering cans, moses offers everything sure to get a little gardener’s heart racing, all with a fun ladybird motif. Children can plant tomatoes, strawberries and nasturtiums, watch them grow and then gobble them up.
See what else there is to find in the Explore Nature trend in the TrendGallery in Hall 3A of the Spielwarenmesse® 2018. Buy your ticket for the Spielwarenmesse® from 31 January – 4 February 2018 now.