We all want to make choices that are not only fun for our little ones but gentle on the planet. But how do you avoid a house full of cheap plastic toys destined for a landfill when these products practically dominate the toy aisles? To help you make more earth-friendly choices for your household, we’re diving into all things sustainable toys: what they are, why they’re good for your kids, and how to spot them when you’re shopping!
Understanding Sustainable Toys
So what exactly makes a toy sustainable? There are a few things to look for: First and foremost, will the toy last? High-quality, durable toys can last for many stages of your child’s life and be re-used by younger siblings, reducing the number of toys you buy. (More on this below!)
Secondly, what is the toy made of? Sustainable toys are crafted from responsibly sourced materials, often utilizing renewable resources and recycled or recyclable materials.
Educational and Developmental Aspects of Sustainable Toys
It's never too early to start teaching our children about the importance of taking care of our planet. Sustainable toys provide a fantastic platform to introduce environmental concepts and nurture a love for nature. As they play, we can engage them in conversations about conservation and the importance of protecting our environment. Sustainable outdoor toys or toys that emphasize a love of nature like the Lil’ Green World Collection make these conversations even easier!
Sustainable toys are often developmentally-friendly toys as well. Why? Toys that are meant to last and grow with your child are usually geared toward child-led play, the kind that supports kids’ creativity and cognitive development. This is a far cry from gimmicky toys that simply entertain rather than engage children in meaningful play.
Longevity and Durability
We've all seen those flimsy, break-apart toys that barely survive a single play session. Sustainable toys are meant to be just the opposite! Sustainable toys are made from top-notch materials, and designed to endure even the most rambunctious play sessions. Also, consider how long your child will remain interested in the toy. If it’s made from eco-friendly materials but will only be played with a few times before it gets thrown away, it’s still wasteful. Open-ended toys that can grow with kids are the way to go – they don’t need to be replaced as often and are less likely to end up in a landfill.
And that means we save money in the long run and give the planet a high-five at the same time!
Best Practices for Choosing Sustainable Toys:
So how do you find said magical, eco-friendly, long-lasting toys? Keep these principles in mind as you shop and research brands, and you’ll end up with high-quality toys that are easy on the planet:
Toys like building blocks, art supplies, and pretend play props are the superheroes of imaginative play. They offer endless possibilities for play because they’re powered by our kids’ imaginations – not by gimmicky effects– so your kids can turn just a few toys into endless fun. And when you choose open-ended toys made from durable materials, you won’t need constant toy replacements. That’s a win for eco-friendly entertainment!
Eco-Friendly Toy Disposal
We can’t talk about sustainable toys without talking about what happens when our little ones outgrow them. Let's explore a few methods that give our kids’ beloved toys a second chance at life!
We can make choices that prioritize our planet while creating magical memories for our little ones. When we prioritize high-quality, long-lasting toys that can grow with our child, we’ll consume less and leave a smaller carbon footprint in the process.
At KidKraft, we create toys that are durable enough to last through the toughest toddler treatment and open-ended enough to grow with them through the school years. From our safe, non-toxic paints and finishes to our sturdy wood constructions, KidKraft toys minimize the plastic, maximize the fun, and will stick around for years to come!