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Promote Child Development with Marble Run Toys

Promote Child Development with Marble Run Toys

Developing a child’s creativity and skills is a goal of every attentive parent. And toys are a perfect way to do that. Playtime doesn’t have to be wasted time. It can be a fertile ground of learning and discovery and an expansion of mental, emotional, and physical skills. 

Toys that challenge kids will increase their mental capacity over time. This is known as “active learning.” It's what happens when children use toys that make them think through challenges, problems, and scenarios.

In children aged six to twelve years, the advantage of using toys as teaching tools is that they think they're just having fun. But we know that the game they're playing is teaching important life-long skills.

Here are some of the skills we believe kids can learn from marble runs:

1. Marble runs build self-esteem.

Between the ages of six and eight, kids are beginning to exhibit some independence. They want to do things on their own. They also begin to understand the feeling of a sense of accomplishment.

This is a great place where marble runs come into play. Not only are they building cognitive and motor skills, but they're also building self-esteem through the accomplishment of building and playing with the marble run.

2. Marble runs foster teamwork.

While we as parents love to encourage independent play, we also have the responsibility and privilege of helping our kids learn. Working together as a team, we can encourage and guide them to maximize learning opportunities that come from marble runs. This ensures that they get the most out of their toys – and the learning experience they bring.

3. Marble runs encourage goal-setting.

We can assist our kids with marble runs by helping them set goals, as well as identifying the steps to reach those goals. Building a marble run is a lesson in creativity and patience, and we're the ones who can break down the ultimate goal of a completed marble run into manageable steps for our kids.

4. Marble runs develop the ability to focus.

Let’s face it, children in the age bracket of six to eight years have trouble focusing. We can help improve that focus by encouraging manageable playtime goals. Giving them pictures of run designs that they could make would give them something to shoot for. Many children are visual learners, so this is the perfect way to help them. 

The truth is that children have the ability to focus, but often their attempts are thwarted by their environment. Things like computers, phones, and tablets can offer distraction, but not necessarily learning experiences. Removing these, as well as clutter from other toys, from the play environment helps them focus on the task at hand.

5. Marble runs improve memory and recall.

One of the great advantages of marble run sets is their ability to improve children's memory and recall. If we show a picture of a marble run and encourage our kids to replicate that run, we're effectively exercising and expanding their ability to memorize and recall. This teaches them how to gather, store, and retrieve the data they need for specific tasks.

Kids in this age group have a greater memory capability because many routines (such as tying shoes, brushing teeth, and bathing) are automatic now. Once they figure out how to do basic marble run structures, you can give them more complex challenges. (To see different levels of design ideas, check out our Starter Set, Super Set, and Extreme Set, or download our app for interactive ideas and instructions.)

Your children are a precious gift. You love them deeply and want what's best for them. Creating a loving environment in which they feel secure is obviously most critical. However, finding ways to develop their mental and physical skills at home is important as well.

By using marble run toys in patient and creative ways, parents can help their children learn and exercise those abilities that will last a lifetime.

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Setting Up a Marble Race with a Marble Run

Setting Up a Marble Race with a Marble Run

Marble runs are a long-lasting toy because you can design so many different types of games with them.

Setting up a marble race is a perfect example of the toy's versatility, and it can be a great learning opportunity for kids. It also introduces a competitive aspect, which further extends how much the toy gets played with.

TO CREATE A MARBLE RACE WITH YOUR MARBLE RUN, HERE ARE SOME STEPS TO FOLLOW:

1. Make sure you have a high-quality marble run.

There are lots of different marble runs on the market, and not all of them are created equal. (Check out our buying tips to find a fun and sturdy marble run.)

The best marble runs for racing have plenty of tubes and action pieces. See-through pieces are also a must-have, since they allow you to see the marble action from start to finish.

2. Decide which type of race you'll create with your marble run.

You can either build a race with interconnected pieces (like the one pictured below), or you can build two separate structures. Building an interconnected race requires a little more teamwork and planning, while separate structures allow for independent construction.

3. Evenly divide your marble run pieces.

Once you decide what type of race to set up, evenly divide the number of bases, tubes, and action pieces. This is very important so the race is as fair as possible. As you set up the marble run, you might find that one needs more bases or tubes than the other, which is okay. The key is that you don't want an imbalance of action pieces because it will greatly impact the outcome of the race. 

4. Decide how you'll conduct your marble race.

Now that your marble run is ready for the race, you have some options for how to conduct it. You can either release the marbles down the marble run simultaneously, or you can get a tablet/smartphone/stopwatch to time the marbles from top to bottom. We recommend trying both options and conducting the race at least three times before declaring a winner. This guarantees the result is consistent.

LEARNING BENEFITS OF MARBLE RACES

If you've been around here long, you know we believe strongly in the value of marble runs as an educational toy.

Marble races are a perfect learning opportunity for the following reasons:

  • Kids can analyze which action pieces produce the fastest results and why.
  • They learn basic physics concepts by noting how steepness and length affect the speed of the marble.
  • They learn time concepts and comparison of results.
  • They gain the ability to analyze processes and make adjustments to achieve faster results.

Setting up and executing a marble race is also an opportunity for us as parents to work alongside our kids and show them how we problem solve.

Marble runs provide kids so many opportunities to play and learn. The marble race is just one of the many ways you can use your marble run to help your child grow and develop.

We would love to learn how you use your marble run to have a marble race at home. Please send your pictures to us at support@marblegenius.com and we'll find a way to share with others!

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Importance of Interactive Toys For Kids

Importance of Interactive Toys For Kids

Interactive toys are an inseparable part of kids' lives, playing a vital role in their development in early phases of life. The main purpose of interactive toys isn't simply limited to having fun, but also to learn. 

FUNCTIONS OF INTERACTIVE TOYS

In our view, there are five primary functions of interactive toys for kids:

1. Improvement in Cognitive Skills

Interactive toys help kids recognize colors and develop memorization and problem solving skills. Kids also learn about numbers and size when playing with certain interactive toys.

2. Development of Social Skills

It's important for children to know and master social skills from a young age. Some of the interactive toys like board games prepare them to understand emotions, explore the environment by turns, and learn to cooperate with others.

3. Growth of Imagination and Logic

Children use their logic and imagination while playing with toys that are open-ended and allow for flexibility. Interactive toys also develop awareness and recognition of the surrounding environment.

4. Development of Motor Skills

Some interactive toys work on various parts of the body like legs, hands, and fingers to balance and develop kids' muscular abilities. This is necessary for continued growth as they explore the environment around them.

5. Growth of Speaking Skills

Today some robotic interactive toys are available in the market, teaching kids how to speak a language properly. With guidance from parents or older siblings, they can learn speech skills while enjoying the fun of the toy.

TYPES OF INTERACTIVE TOYS

Various types of interactive toys are available in the market today, including educational toys and digital games. While you can find a wide variety of interactive toys, here some of the most popular.

Gear Sets

These interactive toys improve children's imagination and logical skills. They're very kid-friendly, with bright colors, and can be assembled easily. In addition to providing kids a new building experience, gears also develop their problem solving and critical thinking skills. Children think like engineers as they interact with different components, such as pillars, gears, axels, handles, and interlocking bases.


(Gears! Gears! Gears! Deluxe Building Set, 100 Pieces)


LEGO Blocks

A long-standing classic, LEGO blocks are a perfect choice for developing kids' intelligence while having fun. There are many different LEGO toys, including free-form sets with no instructions to highly scripted sets that build boats, cars, planes, and more.


(LEGO Classic Medium Creative Brick Box)


Marble Run Toys

Marble games have been played by kids for decades. With the advancement of new technologies and manufacturing innovation, they've emerged as a leading interactive and STEM development toy in recent years. This is particularly true of the marble run.

Though you can find a variety of marble runs at stores or online, there are only a select few that offer the highest quality while maximizing the development benefit for children. At Marble Genius, we consider our marble run toys among the best you'll find anywhere.


(Marble Genius Super Set)


Whether you decide to move forward with the purchase of gear sets, Legos, or marble run toys, it's always important to do your research so you know what you're buying.

Marble runs in particular have had a number of very cheap and flimsy versions being sold on the Internet. Do your homework and read this blog post to find the best marble run money can buy!

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Why Educational Toys Are Important

Why Educational Toys Are Important

We all know that kids learn best with hands-on toys, such as Legos, building sets, science kits, and marble runs. But what exactly do our kids learn while they play with them?

The benefits of educational toys cover many aspects of a child's development. Here are a few we'd like to highlight.

BENEFITS OF EDUCATIONAL TOYS

1. Educational toys enhance creativity.

Through educational toys, kids are exposed to different ways of learning and playing. This ultimately enables them to try new things and explore their imagination. A good example is building blocks. While building a structure, kids have the opportunity to explore the world from their unique lens and imagine it in new and exciting ways.

2. Educational toys teach new subjects.

From a young age, children can be exposed to a variety of subjects through educational toys. Examples include learning about different colors, shapes, and words. Older kids can expand their knowledge of science, mathematics, writing, and more. One example is marble runs, such as the ones we make here at Marble Genius. When kids put together a marble run, they're exploring the concepts of physics, engineering, and math...all while having fun.

3. Educational toys develop problem solving skills.

Hands-on toys are designed to provide a problem that needs to be solved. Kids use their own ideas and thoughts to solve it and ultimately reach the given goal. Puzzles are a great toy that enhance problem solving skills. By developing these skills at an early age, kids are equipped to tackle bigger problems as they grow older.

4. Educational toys foster critical thinking.

In order for kids to reach the goal in educational toys, they need to engage their minds with plenty of thought, sequencing, and memory. Multiple senses come into play as they make observations and analyze different problems. Tracking, sequencing, and sorting are among the other skills they learn.

5. Educational toys boost kids' confidence.

Everyone gets a boost of confidence from doing something successfully, and this is definitely true of kids. Once they've worked hard to solve a problem and see the fruits of their labor, they feel more confident to tackle other challenges in the future. By introducing new varieties of educational toys, kids have the opportunity to test new skills and gain confidence in new areas.

6. Educational toys keep kids busy.

As parents, it's a continual challenge to keep our kids entertained without putting a screen in front of them. Educational toys are the perfect solution for boredom, as they offer continual challenges and ignite the imagination. Interactive toys that allow for future expansion are the best at occupying a child's interest for hours.

MAKE EDUCATIONAL TOYS A PART OF YOUR HOME

Keeping a wide variety of educational toys on hand will allow your kids to expand and grow in new ways every day. By stocking your home with puzzles, building blocks, marble runs, and more, kids can explore their creativity, learn new subjects, develop critical thinking and problem solving skills, and grow in confidence. Best of all, they'll have FUN!

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