I was at a blogger event earlier in the month and some of the PR folks from Hasbro said that they would have some exciting information for me later in the month. It is exciting news! Doctors, educators and child developmental specialists have long known about the educational value of play. Play is not just play for kids, it is learning. But what we are also learning as autism and other similar disabilities become more prevalent, is that the natural “play sequence” that comes naturally and instinctively to some kids, does not come instinctively to all of them. Some kids need to be taught to play, and skipping over some developmental steps in life can hinder their progress. And, even the most engaged and informed parent may not know what to do or how to encourage this in your child if it is not coming naturally to them. If you watch this video, I think that you will agree (if you are a similarly situated parent) with the sentiments expressed here:
Today, nearly one out of four children has some type of developmental challenge, ranging from ADHD and autism spectrum disorders to learning disabilities and developmental delays1. Because playtime can often be challenging to children with these diagnoses, toys go to the bottom of the toy box, and the joy that comes from connecting between peers, siblings and other generations gets lost. With this in mind, a passionate group of Hasbro employees believed they could do more to spread the joy of play to all children. Thus, the grassroots and employee-led project, ToyBox Tools, was born.
“Play isn’t always accessible out of the box for children with a developmental disability, which is something Hasbro was able to recognize and work towards finding a solution,” said Joanne Quinn, Executive Director of The Autism Project, part of Gateway Healthcare. “We are thrilled to team up with Hasbro to offer this original and free resource to parents, caretakers and educators in an effort to unlock the power of play and make it enjoyable for children at their own pace.”
List of Hasbro toys in ToyBox Tools Autism Project:
Mr. Potato Head Silly Suitcase (Available Q1 2015)
This is a fantastic resource and just in time for the holidays. Have fun & happy holidays!