Shape Sorters

  • About
Shape sorters are great toys for retailers to make available for little one’s development and enjoyment for several reasons. Firstly, they help harness their fine motor skills as they pick up pieces using their hands and fingers and place them in the appropriate place. In doing this activity they are also learning to focus their attention and efforts, whilst also learning volume through handling the 3D size of the pieces and how that fits against the 2D hole. This exercise also improves their hand to eye co-ordination, memory and boosts confidence through success. These activities also encourage opportunities for verbal interaction while practising counting and identifying colours and shapes. Understanding of cause and affect is also enhances as the shapes drop through the toy and can be retrieved.

Retailers can access supply of baby and toddler shape sorters in a range of price points and styles to suit consumer needs, including traditional wooden ones to those with electronic chips that give the name of the shape, colour, number or rewarding sounds when correctly inserted.

Why are educational toys such big sellers?

Toys that offer educational development are always going to be popular - parents who have children heading toward preschool and school age want them to have all the advantages they can as they head into the classroom. And for those who are not educated in a school setting, educational toys offer the ideal opportunity for home-based learning. Even before the 2020 lockdown, the numbers of children being home educated in England had increased by 13 per cent, according to government figures. By late spring and a month into lockdown and nearly a quarter of British parents had said they were likely to continue homeschooling even after lockdown finished, according to a survey by For the children who have returned to a school education, parents now have a heightened awareness of their educational needs - and also a concern over the time lost when children were not back at school. So any toy that has a perceived educational value is going to be more attractive than before. For the retailer, there are so many sections of education to address - STEM, geography, literacy, maths and so on - that there will always be something new to offer to the customer.

Benefits of educational toys

The main benefit of educational toys is that they make learning fun - and everyone, children and adults, always engage better with things when they are fun! Good educational toys encourage children to explore, and experiment, or really engage with the subject matter. They also offer repetition, which ensures knowledge retention.

Although it can be argued that most toys are educational in some way - encouraging children to use either imaginations, learn about the world around them and discover how to cooperate and problem solve, here we concentrate on the toys that Baby Brands Direct supplies that teach school subjects such as literacy, maths, colours, science and so on.

One of the main things an educational toy should do is to challenge the child’s mental ability - this encourages them to think in different ways, learn to problem solve, identify patterns, and expand the way they think. All useful life skills that will give them an advantage at preschool and school.

We all learn in different ways - some of us are visual learners some of us are aural learners some of us kinesthetic and so on. Educational toys tap into these different ways of learning, so are especially valuable to children who don’t engage so thoroughly with traditional ‘school learning’. Being able to retain information through fun, varied activities will open up a love of learning that can last a lifetime. As well as teaching academic skills, educational toys can help in all-round growth - for instance, they can encourage emotional and social development, such as how to take turns, how to lead, play with others and persevere when an activity is not easy or straightforward. Educational toys can also encourage improved concentration - when children discover that learning can be fun, they can focus for longer and the educational value is increased.

Some of our favourite educational toys include the cute Linkimals Counting Koala. This musical learning friends for babies from Fisher Price introduces numbers, counting and shapes. Toddlers can join Tad and his Letter Factory friends as they explore letters and music in the Letter Band Phonics Jam, while school age children will love learning about language and geography with the Leap Frog Magic Adventures Globe.