Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Wooden Toys

In a modern, affluent family there is usually an abundance of toys. In the last twenty years or so, more and more of them have included electronics, made of high-tech plastics (when I was a child, plastic toys were thought to be poor imitations, because the material in them was so poor) and cleverly designed. On the leading edge are all the high-tech gizmos (cell-phones, iPods, computer-games, etc.) that have useful functions but also possess a high amount of "play" potential.

On the other end of the spectrum are simple wooden toys. Good for creative stacking, arranging and infinite imaginative play. Frank Lloyd Wright often spoke of a set of colored, geometric wooden blocks as his favorite childhood toy, and the most important. The ultimate organic- shaped from a living thing. We could get even more primitive if we went to sticks and stones and bones, but simple wooden toys have been shaped by a conscious mind and are elegant, adaptable, and usually have a clean design.

All that, and a nice "thock" sound is made when you bounce one off an older sibling's head.

By Professor Batty



2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The best!

Nothing can beat the tactile feel and smell (especially if they're made from cedar!) of good ol' wooden toys. Eventhough my kids will occasionally play video games (on either the Mac, PC, or the neighbor's Xbox), they were both raised on wooden toys and continue to hold them in high reverence even to this day.

Something tells me that their kids will have wooden toys as well. . .many years from now. . .

-DJZ


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was already pondering making some blocks for the new hordes of progeny... now I am certain.

Again, you are right.

CD

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