There’s no masking this: Ours is an extroverted world. We value people who are highly social, and exuberant. And through modern technology, especially with the growth of social media, we are moving more and more in that direction, most often without realizing it.
There’s nothing wrong with being an extrovert. Similarly, there’s nothing wrong with being an introvert. Both extroversion and introversion are perfectly fine personality types. The trouble, however, is that many people fail to see it that way. Parents often think there is something wrong with their introverted kids. They push them to socialize, to be more outgoing, where they actually need to be encouraged to be who they are. For at the end of the day, many of the most successful scientists and entrepreneurs have emerged from among them.
In our world, an introverted childhood can be especially difficult. Schools can be stressful for such kids, as it is designed to make kids interact and socialize, even if they might not be comfortable doing so. All this interaction can leave them exhausted. Elizabeth here writes about a time when her 4-year-old son was clearly enjoying a birthday party in his own way, but she was concerned by the fact that he was not enjoying it as part of the group. She was able to recognize the error in her way of thinking, and we hope others will be able to as well.
These kids can have a wonderful time on their own. They can create their own internal worlds, and be completely immersed in them. They have a rich imagination, and so they find their own way of engaging with the world. Therefore, the toys for them should also be able to allow them to do so. The best toys for them will thus fuel their imaginative powers, encourage them to do what they love doing, and maybe even influence them to one day change our world.
So how do you make their playtime more enjoyable? How do you choose toys for them?
We have come up with a few points to help you decide. While choosing your next toy, ask yourself these questions:
1. Can it engage your kid for long hours? An introverted child might not want to always play with their friends, and might instead prefer a quiet corner in the house. That’s perfectly okay! But you must also ensure that in the absence of human company, your child has something to engage with. Let the next toys be such that the kids can play with them for hours, and come back to it again and again.
2. Does it boost confidence in your child? It is possible that the child might suffer from a lack of confidence. The toy, therefore, must be something that’ll build confidence in them. Puzzles are good examples of toys that serve this purpose, and so are the digital games which compliment and congratulate the child, during and after gameplay.
3. Does it engage different motor skills? Although their playtime may lack participating with a lot of friends, it should not lack interactivity. Choose toys that require physical interaction on the part of the child, especially those that ensure the involvement of many of their senses (visual, auditory, tactile) in the gameplay.
4. Does it have useful content? We can all agree that educational toys are good for kids, regardless of their personality types. But due to the dearth of interaction, it is possible that the little introverts will lack social skills. The toy, therefore, could be rich in content that would give them valuable cultural and social knowledge.
5. Can it expand their mental horizons? The toys could be things with which they can build their own imaginative world, and learn about new ways to think, and new things to think about. They could be toys that will allow the kid to explore, and learn about all the wonderful thing in the whole world without leaving their comfortable corner.
We believe the little ones would love toys that meet these criteria!