Rewards baby as they learn that their actions have reactions
Babies are exploring and experimenting with the world almost from the day they are born. Cause and effect is a scientific concept that babies learn very early in their lives. A delightful example of this is when babies begin to explore gravity by dropping toys whilst sitting in their highchair. The toy drops downwards and makes a noise as it hits the floor. Parents will tend to pick the toy up and return it to the infant. This enables the baby to continue with their experiment and learn more about cause and effect; babies learn a great deal through repetition and it is good to facilitate opportunities where babies can begin to understand that, for instance, a toy will always fall to the ground. This type of learning through cause and effect continues throughout childhood. Encouraging children to be curious about the world facilitates learning through experience. Toys that reliably make a noise when pressed, pulled or touched teach babies that their actions have an effect on the world. VTech bath toys with their pouring and squirting features encourage cause and effect awareness. Children demonstrate that they have understood the concept of cause and effect when they talk about the consequence of actions. Before children use spoken language researchers discover what young infants understand about the world by presenting them with unexpected events. For example, babies are beginning to understand that toys reliably fall to the ground and that if a toy train goes into a tunnel it will come out the other end. If babies are presented with an unexpected event where, for example, a moving toy train disappears behind a screen but does not come out the other end they will stare for a long time at the screen. VTech toys offer babies and children the opportunity to learn more about cause and effect by pressing buttons and listening to the sounds, moving toys around and playing educational computer games.
Imagination and exploration through interaction with characters.
Children’s imagination is active from an early age. Imaginative play has links to what psychologists call ‘social pretend play’. Young children pretend or imagine that, for instance a wooden block is a cake and they carefully ‘cut’ it. A large proportion of pretend play tends to be social. Imaginative play begins when infants play and pretend with adults. As young children develop they begin to try to engage other children in social pretend play. Young children in nursery benefit from engaging in imaginative play. It helps them to begin to understand that other children think differently to them and have different ideas. Children can engage in imaginative play with other children where they have agreed on a story or scenario that they want to act out. Young children playing with toys use their imagination to invent scenarios and play out the consequences. They can use characters to explore scenarios and act out scripts such as going shopping or bedtime. Imaginative and social pretend play is beneficial for children as it allows them to explore different ways of viewing the world. Children who use their imagination when playing with other children are increasing their social competence and their understanding of other people. In a study where we observed children playing in a nursery we found that young children engaged in imaginative play, often using the toys in unexpected ways. Children’s imagination benefits from the opportunity to play with all types of toys.
Encourages fine motor skill development.
An infant’s growth and development in the first year of life is rapid. Many movements that young babies make are in preparation for the next stage of their development. When young babies watch a mobile they are constantly moving their head, arms, legs and even their mouths in response to the movement of the toy. Sound and movement attract a baby’s attention; if a toy is placed almost within reach of babies their movements become more animated. Bath toys provide opportunities to develop and use motor skills to great effect. For example, a young baby has greater control over their leg movements than their arms. You will often see young babies in a bath reaching with their legs towards a floating toy and kicking. All these movements strengthen muscles in readiness for the next stage - walking. As babies develop they become more adept at grasping objects. Young infants learn to grasp an object, for instance a cube. The grasping, at first, is quite clumsy but through repetition, and across time, infants become adept at grasping and develop fine motor skills. Infants first use the ulnar grasp where their fingers close against the palm when trying to hold an object. Within another month they are able to move the object from hand to hand. After the first year, infants adopt the ‘pincer grasp’ where they use their thumb and index finger to grasp even very tiny objects. Shape sorters help infants to fine tune their visual perception and hand coordination. Soon infants are building towers with two cubes; this also requires fine coordination skills. As the child grows computer games have been shown to help with hand and eye coordination. Spatial skills can also be enhanced when playing games that require concentration, quick responses and finely tuned motor skills.
Enhances musical skills with music and sound activities.
Babies are sensitive to sound patterns early in life and respond emotionally to voices. Even before they are born infants detect and monitor sound to a certain extent. During the second half of their first year babies are particularly sensitive to differences in beat and rhythm. Music is a complex form of auditory stimulation that is linked to human movement. Infants are drawn to music and are very good at being able to discern different musical structures. In a recent survey we found that parents often choose a particular traditional nursery, for example twinkle, twinkle little star, because of the gestures linked to the song. Babies love music and nursery rhymes that have plenty of repetition and gestures. Children also love to experiment with music. Toys that allow children to create their own tunes facilitate learning. Children can learn about a wide variety of sounds and tempo. They can also learn about the sounds of different musical instruments through pressing keys on a musical toy. Children who grow up in the Western world tend to be exposed to the typical even-beat pattern of Western music. There is a link between learning, singing and rhythm that is related to the type of culture that children grow up in. Musical creativity can be nurtured through the infant’s and child’s exposure to music, musical toys and instruments.
Playset includes shape sorter, elevator, spinning gears, and a gate to raise and lower.
Place the Minnie Mouse Ice Cream Truck on three SmartPoint® locations to hear fun phrases, sounds and music!
The Minnie Mouse Ice Cream Truck plays fun sounds, phrases, 3 sing-along songs and 6 melodies.
Teaches the letter "I" and the name of the vehicle.
Works with other Toot-Toot Drivers playsets (each sold separately).
Best for ages:
1 to 3 Years
Sort the sweet treats in the shape sorter, load up the Ice Cream Truck, go down the tracks and past the gate to help Minnie Mouse make some sweet deliveries!
Little sweeties will have a delightful time creating, exploring and playing with the VTech Toot-Toot Drivers Minnie Ice Cream Parlour. Take a ride with Minnie Mouse and her Ice Cream Truck down the tracks and through the gate, activating three SmartPoint® locations as you go. Drop ice cream shapes into the shape sorter and into Minnie Mouse’s Ice Cream Truck, raise the elevator, spin the gears and move the gate to promote motor skills. Listen to Minnie Mouse’s voice say fun phrases and encourage pretend play. So brush off that sweet tooth and bite into this adventure!