Top 5 Toy Brands For Fostering Creative, Open-Ended Playtime In 2022
More and more parents in Australia and worldwide are making the conscious choice to move away from plastic, battery operated toys and choosing more open ended toys made from natural materials.
If you're not already familiar with open ended play, in short it is defined as free form, flexible play without rules or instructions.
So why are more parents and caregivers choosing this form of play based learning?
Here are just a few of the many beneficial reasons why open ended play is a wonderful way for children to learn an array of important skills in their early years:
- It gives children the freedom to create and explore at their own pace allowing them to develop problem solving skills
- Allows for and encourages their imagination, memory and creativity without rules, restriction or instructions
- Encourages independent play which helps children learn leadership, social skills, and decision making skills as well as self soothing. This supports their emotional growth and helps them understand and manage their feelings
So let's get into our list! We’ve carefully curated our top toy brands (in no particular order) based on the educational value of their range as well as the quality of the materials used:
At Kubi Dubi, one of their main focuses is the safety of toys in the hands of young experimentalists, and the quality of the materials they use.
State-of-the-art equipment and technology allow them to create unique designs that educate and inspire children of all ages.
Their beautiful range of wooden building block sets in particular, are the perfect introduction to open ended play. Children can create and imagine so many different scenes and uses for the blocks each time they play. From towers, to castles, to famous buildings and fences for animals, the possibilities are endless.
All of their toys are sustainably handmade and created by skilled artisans who have extensive training and expertise in their field. Kubi Dubi believe that by purchasing wooden toys, we show that we care about the environment and teach our children sustainability and how to take care of the world we live in.
[Kubi Dubi Best Seller: Extra Large Wooden Building Blocks - Aladdin's Palace]
When it comes to open ended, creative play Playful Wood is a must! Their beautiful range of wooden toys and puzzles are like no other and are a wonderful resource for early learning.
In particular, their large Wooden Shape puzzles allow children to explore and create so many different shapes in both 2D and 3D form.
The quality, precision and passion is showcased in each and every one of the toys from the Playful Wood range. To ensure the quality of the materials, owner Pavel only sources timber from local, FSC certified suppliers and only uses natural treatment methods and finishes.
[Playful Wood Best Seller: Extra Large Wooden Dump Truck - Robur]
Bumbu Toys are wonderfully unique and beautifully crafted wooden toys that are handmade from sustainable maple wood, hand painted with non-toxic paints and are designed to ignite your child's imagination and bring them endless joy through play.
They have an ever growing range of incredible wooden figures as well as a beautiful collection of open ended stacking toys and puzzles that are loved by children of all ages. In particular, their unique and visually striking Wooden Peacock Puzzle is a brilliant open ended toy that allows children to create and play with it in so many different ways. This puzzle was also recently named Best Wooden Toy and Best Wooden Puzzle at the Greece Toy Awards 2021.
[Bumbu Toys Best Seller: Japanese Maple Tree]
This wonderful, unique range of wooden toys are designed to engage children and teach them important skills in a fun way so they will want to keep playing and learning.
Beautiful bright colours feature throughout which are all painted by hand using non-toxic, water based paints. This helps children learn and practice colour recognition and other skills such as grasping, motor skills, counting, patience and much more.
In particular, their beautiful Wooden Peg Doll Sets are a wonderful open ended toy for children to create and tell stories with, practice role play, build with and also incorporate into their sensory play and small world set ups.
[Wooden Educational Toy Best Seller: Mushroom Fishing Game]
Vera & The Neva is a family-owned business from Russia that specialises in creating wooden toys for children and is focused around promoting independent play. Their toys are designed for developing children’s emotional intellect as well as their critical thinking and creative skills.
Their unique wooden toy designs present a wonderful opportunity to explore the world through unusual shapes, colours and textures.
In particular, their Wooden Sorting Acorn's With Bowls Set is an excellent open ended toy that is ideal for practicing counting, motor skills, pretend play and can also be used in lots of sensory play settings.
[Vera & The Neva Best Seller: Wooden Building Blocks - Pastel]