Children love playing make-believe. Not only is it fun, it also gives them the chance to develop their imaginations, their social skills, help them solve problems, and learn life skills, as well as building their confidence and giving them a sense of self. Scientists have speculated that the more a child plays, the more connections he or she will make to different parts of the brain (to do with sensory, cognitive, and language skills), which will make them more intelligent. There are many different kinds of ‘play’, and one of the most early developed is the art of imitation. Children see their parents perform daily tasks and want to copy them.
For many little boys, one of the most fun ways of imitating their parents takes place on the road. Driving is a big part of everyday life and a lot of kids start imitation by playing house and pretending to be grown up. However, you can encourage this kind of play without having the kids climbing all over the new car. Hand a little boy a cardboard box and at some point it’ll turn into a racing car. But there are a number of toy cars available to buy so your kids can play safely and happily.
Toy cars range from simple plastic models to much more advanced models with real engines. You can also purchase driving simulation games, meaning they can go as fast as they want without having to worry about them crashing into a ditch.
Rather than hiding them away from the fast-paced racing car lifestyle, it’s better to show your kids how to be responsible drivers. Make sure they know the difference between reality and the game they’re playing.
The toy company Little Tikes are famed for producing one of the most popular plastic ride-on cars, the Little Tikes Grand Coupe. You’ll probably recognise the red and yellow frame, and it comes with a large steering wheel and working horn. Little Tikes have also taken on the Disney brand ‘Cars’, and manufactured a number of imitations from the successful film, such as the character Lightening McQueen. In the same range, there are also cars for girls, push-along cars for children too young to steer themselves, and police cars and pick-up trucks. The Little Tikes range do not have pedals. There are a number of pedal cars available, but they tend to be a bit more expensive. One of the most popular pedal cars is the Instep PC300 Kids Fire Truck Pedal Car.
However, you can also get electronically charged cars, which are much more realistic. Your child can drive up to 6km per hour. They come in all different models, from Porsche, to Ferrari, to Hummers, and can often hold two kids at once. These cars are much more expensive, selling for around four hundred pounds each.
Imitating Mum and Dad helps children to understand the adult world and develops their life skills enabling them to become independent as an adult. And it’s never too early to instil your child with good road sense.