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Jane Lake and Toys!

Is it me or did they stop making toys that don't overstimulate kids? Looking for Christmas presents that are appropriate for kids gets more difficult each year.

Toys like the yo-yo, the hula hoop, a jump rope, an etch-a-sketch, jacks, and marbles are eternal classics. Now if it doesn't talk, move, interact with TV, or sing it is BORING!

I remember as a kid putting a playing card in the spokes of my bicycle to make a cool noise as I rode. Now I would just press a button to sound like a jet plane, a motorcycle, or press another button to hear 1 of a hundred tunes (not that I wouldn't have an ipod in my ear anyway!)

I think we are creating a society of overstimulated technophiles who are losing touch with the ability to revel in the beauty of a perfect aggie. You hear a lot more about anxiety and depression today then you did 10 years ago. Could this be a result of the loss of simplicity?

Will toys someday have warnings on them from the Surgeon General saying "This toy may be hazardous to your psyche!" I think maybe they should.

I entered this in the Philosophy Blog War. Pleases vote for my entry here:


Children are used to being entertained now, and I fear they are losing their imagination. I refuse to buy any toy that requires batteries, and that doesn't leave much to choose from!


I do agree that this is a problem, but children will still play with old favorites, especially if encouraged to do so by adults. My nephew asked for a magic set that is really neat but is actually rather old-fashioned in that is is all wood instead of cheap plastic, and it doesn't seem really gimmicky and of course it is not the sort of toy that requires batteries. I bought it for him for Christmas. I think he will enjoy it. My niece loves to play with her American Girl bitty baby, which is just a regular doll, albeit a high quality one. It doesn't require batteries to do something or anything like that. She does love the accessories, like the diaper bag and onesies and all that. Sometimes I think more classic toys can seem rather exotic, since kids aren't used to them anymore!

I agree this is a problem too. My 12 year old son just asked me for a Rubik's cube. I didn't know how he knew what one of those were. We were all talking about Slinky's the other day, he said that he didn't like them because they easily get tangled up. I don't remember that happening to me.

This time, I totally agree with you Jane! :-)



You're right toys are going extinct. More stimulative things are in forms of video games now by leap frog and other learning type stuff companies. Kids are getting obese staying inside playing damn games. They need to run around and hula I read that blog and I agree with you.

I do know how to tangle a might be a gender difference, I am not sure, but
when you spin a slinky around your head in a circle then stop really fast almost any slinky will keep going until it ends in a tangle.

Nice post, Jane!

I think (most) toys are designed to keep kids distracted so they're "out of the way".

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