Anxiety in children is at an all-time high thanks in part to the pandemic, virtual learning and the election. But some of today's hottest, award-winning toys can help. From compounds like putty and slime, to active toys like bikes and even plush, lifestyle and parenting expert Amanda Mushro showcased and discussed some of the hottest must-have toys and products that can also help soothe fears, support social emotional needs and reduce screen time - without them evening knowing it!
Amanda is a nationally recognized parenting expert (and a mom) who has appeared on national and local broadcast stations. She is also the writer behind the blogs www.AmandaMushro.com and www.QuestionableChoicesInParenting.com.
· New from Wild Republic, Comfortkins allows children to practice wearing a mask with their favorite plush animal friends.
· The line features several animals with colored masks.
· Available on WildRepublic.com
· $25 each
· I’M A GIRLY 18” fashion dolls encourage children to play creatively and help them find their very own style.
· All dolls are co-designed by the brand’s own kid design team, KIDS4KIDS. The design panel, made up of 8 to 14-year-old boys and girls, tells the brand exactly how the products should look.
· Kids can customize a doll just for them with more than 150 accessories, interchangeable wigs in many colors, and dolls with different skin tones.
· The hair can be styled and combed in various ways and for the first time, one can even cut the doll’s hair and simply exchange the wig afterwards.
· The packaging is made of recyclable materials and can be used as well to store the fashion doll or for crafting.
· $79.99, Ages 3+ Available on Amazon and Target
Activities like slime and putty are a treat for the senses and can also help to generate a sense of calm. Kids are engaging their sense of touch and for so many kids, slime and putty can be such a relaxing, calming, regulating activity. Here are some examples:
Social Studio Hands-Free Video Station from WeCool Toys
· The new Social Studio by WeCool Toys has everything one needs to shoot their very own viral videos.
· Equipped with an adjustable base and rotating head to shoot at the best angle possible, this device allows kids of all ages to shoot viral videos hands free!
· Kids can use their Social Studio to shoot all types of videos. From cooking, crafting, and sliming, children have the freedom to create fun videos.
· Includes fun and trendy backgrounds, mixing tools, various slimy compounds, and sparkly mix ins! The only limit is your imagination.
· $19.99, 4 and up.
Angry Putty from Crazy Aaron’s puttyworld.com
· Angry Putty Turn your frustration into fun! Angry Putty™ features a unique formula that builds
resistance as you play.
· This amazing putty actually absorbs your tension— getting tenser and tenser with each stretch—to leave you feeling happy and relaxed.
· AGES 3+ | $9.99 | www.puttyworld.com
From virtual learning to video games, kids need time to break away from their devices and play with toys that encourage learning without a screen.
· The Smarty JOJO!™ is a super-charged interactive airplane that gets high-energy preschoolers learning on the go. Motion sensors encourage physical activity while JOJO teaches directions, shapes, colors and opposites.
· The newest SMART technology enables JOJO to "magically" identify colors. JOJO’s kidspeak conversation also nurtures emotional intelligence, calling out feelings and helping kids recognize their own emotions.
· Bi-lingual JOJO speaks in English or Spanish.
· Over 150 random actions and reactions make the experience different every time a child plays!
· Ideal for kids 3 to 5 years old. MSRP: $24.99.
Active play has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem.
· Give your child the most unique and coolest bike on the block with the Mobo Lite 16 inch Bike! A state of the art magnesium alloy frame that's even lighter than aluminum allows for responsive handling and a sporty look.
· 16 inch wheels are perfect for kids 5-8 years old and includes optional training wheels for those who are learning.
· Coaster brakes allow your child to stay in control while braking and an adjustable handlebar and seat allows for a perfect fit.
· Bike riding is a great outdoor activity. Let your child enjoy safe and healthy exercise on the Mobo Lite 16 inch Bike.