Why stuffed animals are good for your child's development

tea party with a teddy bear

Most kids bedrooms have at least one favorite stuffed animal, and likely a zoo of plushies on their bed or in their toy closet. That is because that they are enormously important toys that aid in child development for many reasons. 

Combine that parental knowledge with the fact that family and friends love to give small children huggable soft and cute plushies as gifts. Everyone likes to open gifts and go awww, for that loveable stuffed cow, stuffie dog or even something more exotic like a stuffed animal red panda. 

Here are 10 reasons why stuffed animal toys are great gifts and good for the children that receive them. 


1. Stuffed animals help kids develop their emotional intelligence

One of the best things about plushie toys is their ability to promote a child's ability to nurture and develop empathy. Kids will test out their emotional skills  on their special plush animals. You'll see caring and emotional interactions that they test drive for later use with their friends and fellow students on the playground.

You will see a young child hug their plush toy imparting love. They might console a stuffie who they say is sad or angry.  Or they might make believe the stuffed teddy or critter is their own baby road testing early caring skills. Nursing, feeding or helping a little soft buddy helps them develop compassion and this bodes well for how they interact with other humans as they grow. 


2. Plushies promote imaginative play

If a plushie sloth is your kid's favorite buddy, then you might see them be fed at the table or even become an honored guest at a plushie party. They might take their three-toed sloth pal on a playground adventure or introduce them to their pre-school human friends. 

This type of play encourages an active imagination and inventive thinking that helps develop a healthy creative child. These activities help promote neuron building in their developing brains. A healthy brains means a healthy child as they grow.

Creative children develop into imaginative adults and imaginative adults make the world a better place. So be sure to encourage imaginative and creative play and join in because it is fun for adults too! 

3) Stuffed animal buddies help develop independence and confidence

When you kiss your child goodnight and switch off the light, an abundance of soft toys and huggable pals will soothe your child's fears and help them develop their ability to be alone as they grow. Bedtime that include plushie friends make it feel like they have company. And even if mom and dad are only a room away, having a toy to hug and hold can help a child feel soothed and safe as they fall asleep. This sense of security will give them confidence and courage.

4) Stuffed animals and plushie friends have longevity

Kids gets massive value out of their plushie friends. Some kids adopt one or more favorites when they are little and keep their pals through their childhood and into their teenage years. It makes sense that if a toy has sentimental value that the child may not let the stuffie go as they grow up. Even if the toy may not participate in any more tea parties, in many cases it still might be given a prominent place on a young teenager's bed. Older teens may keep a longtime teddy bear in a pride of place on shelf in their room. Some may secretly draw comfort from them for years to come even if they'd never admit it to anyone. 

You might even find an adult or two that still keep a childhood plushie or teddy in a  special box, perhaps with a mind to giving it to their own children one day. 

Given that a special stuffed animal friend that may have only cost $20 to $30, it is an amazing value given that it may be with a growing child for a decade (or two!).



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