Toy Story

I have often been critical of just how little imagination is needed by kids to play with modern toys.  They come with all the bells and whistles – dolls that talk/cry and have all the bodily functions, dinosaurs that walk, and roar all on their own.

But kids don’t, and shouldn’t need such props to be able to have fun, and treasure the toys they have.

A few visual clues are really all they need, and their imagination fills in all the additional details.

My folks took these photos in one of their recent trips, of some kids playing

Photo 8-03-2013, 14 22 42

There is an obvious attachment to that toy car.  But when you look closely at it, you realise that most of the details are being filled in by the child’s imagination, not with photo-realistic modelling of the real thing (let alone sounds, lights, remote control etc etc)

Photo 8-03-2013, 14 23 28

As far as toy cars go, that is awesome.  That is a real toy.

I was over in NZ last week for a bit of a break, catching up with family. I took a few of the CNC models over – a couple for my brother who is a teacher, as I thought his kids would appreciate them.

Unexpectedly, he had the idea that I visit his class, and build the models with them, in person.

The kids were really taken with them, and the experience of putting them together.  We all had a lot of fun.



We made a dolphin and a velocirator in the session, and they are getting painted up at some stage by the class.


If you were wondering about the school uniform – it was a couple of days after the rugby world cup final, and it was “all black dress day”.

3 Responses

  1. You are so right Stuart, Children need to experience playing with toys that take them out into the garden or into the street to play.
    Last year during the summer holidays I ran driveway workshops for the kids in the local area. We made wooden toys like:
    Ladder Golf…Tic Tac Toe games…Flying Helicopters and Cotton Reel Moon Tractors. The kids had a ball and one of them surprisingly named them the NBN Toys (No Batteries Needed)
    Keep up the great work.


    • That is so cool Dave! And I love the name – NBN Toys. I might have to poach that one….with your blessing.

      • Hi Stuart… No worries about using the NBN Toys. After all, it was one of the kids that came up with it. I will let him know to expect some royalties in the post…he!he!

        I see from one of your later articles that you have used the term. Well done!

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