Cars, Trains & Planes

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Climb aboard; we’re off on an adventure. Toy cars, trains and planes allow children to enter a world of make-believe that lets them take control. Small children just love any toy that has wheels – from babies, to toddlers and beyond.

Apart from the fact that wheeled toys are lots of fun, they also encourage movement – babIes who are on the verge of crawling are encouraged to get moving as their toy does. There are toy vehicles stocked by Baby Brands Direct that suit every age of development, from very simple wooden toys, to cars and trains that encourage building and engineering skills.

Real-life vehicles always hold a fascination for toddlers – a trip on a bus or a train can be a real adventure. It’s no surprise that toys that represent some of the most exciting things in a small child’s world are so popular.

Wooden toys are a refreshing change from pre-programmed electronic toys as they allow children to think for themselves and enjoy traditional creative play. This helps them to be active and develop their motor and co-ordination skills as they play with the pieces from the toys, as well as develop their dexterity and strength. The beautiful array of colours, shapes and themes used to create the wooden toy collection are inspiring and will be loved by little ones given the opportunity to play with them.

A Janod spokesperson comments, ‘we seek to stimulate their imagination and empower them to invent stories and make children HAPPY through the simple pleasure of play.’

Why are toy cars, trains and planes so popular?

Toy vehicles really play into the nostalgic ideas of parents and grandparents. Toy cars and train sets have been popular since the 1950s and 60s, and most kids would have had a favourite car or train for a Christmas or birthday that really stayed in their memory. You only have to see the popularity of the likes of Thomas the Tank Engine and the characters from Disney’s Cars films to see how toy vehicles are ingrained in our psyche. For the retailer, toy vehicles are an easy sell; small, simple vehicles are a good-value purchase, something to pick up as a treat for good behaviour, or a ‘just because’ kind of present for a little one. Bigger toys and sets make an exciting present for a special occasion; with plenty of opportunities to sell on later with the addition of more vehicles, tracks, play mats and so on.

Skill development

Toy vehicles have plenty of developmental benefit as well, they encourage imaginative play, sparking creativity as children learn to understand the world around them. Listen in and you will hear them making up stories about where their vehicles are travelling to, who is driving them and what will happen when they get to the destination. As we mentioned, they encourage movement, as little ones push their cars or train along, which also helps with balance, coordination and the development of gross motor skills. Holding on to vehicles, and wheeling them along also helps to encourage fine motor skills. ‘Parking’ them in patterns or lines is also a popular play activity, which encourages recognition of mathematical patterns, spatial awareness and planning. Watching wheels spin also offers a sensory experience that appeals to all children, but which can be especially attractive to children on the autism spectrum.

How can toy vehicles aid language development?

Is there anyone who can resist making a ‘choo choo’, or ‘brum brum’ noise as they push along a toy car or train? Of course not! Making these noises helps with early communication, while children learn that making sound effects is half the fun! Janod’s range of beautiful wooden toy vehicles will appeal to little ones and parents alike, with their simple styling and appealing colours. Once children are beyond the baby stage, they soon learn that toy vehicles are great fun to race, so they learn to co-operate, negotiate and compete in a friendly way with other children while they play their game.

STEM learning

Finally, vehicles encourage an interest in the STEM categories – children must work out how to put a track together, think about speed and distance or the height planes might fly. For introducing engineering skills, both the Janod DIY truck and the VTech Fix & Learn Car Carrier encourage little ones to have fun learning how to build and add to their vehicles.