Soft toys are often considered as the most prized possession by kids. And that in itself is true as these stuffed animals help them grow in certain ways. Soft toys are a major part of the surreal world of any child.
They help them boost their confidence, their interactive skills, mannerism and many more. Plush toys provide teaching with comfort and that’s how a child learns some very important lessons while playing.
Since toddlers use these toy animals to project their feelings, the furry gifts are an important part of their childhood. The touch and feel of the texture of the plush toys leave a positive impact psychologically.
These soft toys also come in various colours, texture and size which also leave a different impact on them. They are designed according to the age group to which they are given to play with.
For the toddlers; below the age of 12 months, the stuffed toys are of softer texture. Which helps them intrigue qualities like bonding, empathy and affection.
Toddlers develop a sense of touch at the early stage; these stuffed toys’ soft touch gives them a relaxing feeling. At the later stage, they learn empathy along with language and names. Different stuffed animals help them learn types of animals and associate each with their names.
Even older children with soft toys learn classification of animals better and understand zoology and biology in a fun way.
Develops motor skills
Children love to role-play and hence when they play with these toys frequently, it helps develop fine motor skills. In older children, sewing these soft toys not only helps them develop basic sewing and pattern skills but also involves fine motor coordination and 3-dimensional math skills.
Helps them develop compassion
These toys that they sew can be gifted to their friends or siblings hence making them learn the importance of compassion in relationships. Also, some kids get attached to their stuffed animals during the course of making them, playing with them and spending time with them daily. This makes them compassionate towards all living beings and makes them amicable and kind.
Help learn Mannerisms
As mentioned earlier kids of all ages love role plays. For elders, the stuffed toy is just cute gifts but for children, soft toys are a creative and fun way of learning. Eating habits, sanitary habits, salutation manners and general etiquettes can be easily taught to children through role-playing where kids teach these mannerisms to their toys.
Helps them explore complex emotions/ Emotional Benefits
Even at early ages kids quickly grasp colour, size and textures from the world around them. These soft toys are a perfect way for them to do so. Their touches help regulate their blood pressure and generate endorphins making them feel mushy and calm. It also evokes a feeling of peace and security according to some university medical centres. Recordable teddy bears “evokes a sense of peace, security and comfort,” said psychologist Corrine Sweet. They also learn to control and understand their emotions through role-play with these toys.
Learn to express
Kids are too attached to their parents which makes social interaction difficult. These soft toys can be their early companions with whom they can talk about their day. Thereby helping express them better and making them sociable. Many kids are introvert because of the fear of interaction; having interacted with these toys at the early stage of childhood might help them open up and interact socially. And later, it also helps to showcase the calibre and talent with confidence.
As kids would have learned to interact with the help of these furry buddies, it becomes easier for them to interact socially and perform. This imbibes a greater sense of confidence in them which helps them achieve goals.
Knowledge sharing through role-playing
Along with mannerisms a lot of other things can be taught through role-play, even academic topics. Teaching always help understand better, hence when they enact teaching their soft toys they gain a better grasp over those topics and subjects.
Not only that but an extra-curricular activity like public speaking or debate also be practised through this method, thereby enhancing their knowledge and knowledge sharing ability.
Helps improve the psychological well being
The soft touch of these toys gives a relaxing feeling and calms a stressed soul. These toys often help them understand complex emotions and learn how to express them. Teddy bears are the most loved among these toys and are ubiquitous for a reason. In the aftermath of the 2012 school shooting in Newton, Connecticut about 7000 teddy bears were donated to the survivors and their families to comfort them. Apart from cuddling, these furry creatures are capable of dampening emotional trauma. Some scientific studies suggest that children who become more attached to teddy bears start giving them life-like significance.