Terrific Toys for Tots, Toddlers and Teens

Reader Contribution by Heidi Hunt

Have you ever spent time with a child outdoors or on a camping trip? Did you have fun floating sticks in a creek, collecting colored leaves or skipping rocks on a pond? None of these activities require batteries, electricity or any technical skill — all they require are two people spending time together doing a pleasant activity. Perhaps this could be the holiday season that you decide to forgo batteries and plastic and instead make a few simple wooden toys for the youngsters on your holiday gift list.

The wooden toys featured in this article use scraps of wood and can be made with a jack knife, jig saw, drill and a little sand paper. They can be played with individually, but are a lot more fun when two or more people are involved — especially the giggling part. How often do you hear children laughing together while playing video games?

The parachute, spear-the-fish, little slugger, little flipper and snap-toy trick all require a bit of practice to do well. But that’s where you come in – after making the toy, spend time with your favorite child, giggling as you practice, then give a performance for the rest of the family. Family and friends, isn’t that what the holiday season is about? And if you can involve all generations in the fun, it is just that much better.