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The Toy Shop

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colorful building block toys Whether we're adult toy collectors or kids who enjoy playing with toys, we all relate to toys in some manner.  Some toy manufacturers focus on old standbys like construction sets, board games and train sets while others cater more to current trends with themed dolls and action toys from movies and sports figures.  In any event, a vast selection of children's toys is designed and manufactured each year.  Many toy makers also produce limited edition reproductions of nostalgic toys.

Evidence of simple toys and games has been found in archaeological digs, and throughout the course of recorded history, people have made and enjoyed a wide variety of toys.  During the Roman Empire, children had rag dolls and played with stone and glass marbles.  In Victorian times, toy manufacturing began in earnest, and during the 1930s, a toy collectibles market developed.  In recent years, Internet auction sites have spawned a large secondary collectibles market for toys.

Whether your child is the active type, or whether your child prefers to play quietly, there's definitely a toy designed to suit.  Quite popular today are interactive toys.  Fitted with computer chips, these toys look like robots, dinosaurs, dogs, or other animals, and are programmed to interact with the child by talking or moving.  The child gives a command, and the toy reacts.  Other interactive toys play games with children, like chess, checkers, or Battleship.

boy playing a computer game Computerized games are also very popular.  These games can be handheld, or can attach to your video monitor via a console.  These games are extremely realistic, and simulate adventures such as flying an airplane, playing a baseball game, racing a car, or even skateboarding down extreme ramps!  The child controls the game via a joystick or handset.  Many of these games accommodate more than one player, and can be enjoyed by more than one child at a time.

Other toys that have sprung up and quickly gained popularity are educational toys.  These toys are not just designed for the child's entertainment, but are rather designed to be fun while they are teaching the child a skill, like math or reading.  So popular is this category that there are even educational toys for infants that claim to develop a baby's brain activity or teach hand-eye coordination.

Finally, much of the toy industry concentrates on keeping kids active.  After all, tired kids are good kids!  It's not hard to find toys to keep your child moving, whether it is an appropriately sized skateboard or bike, or the good, old-fashioned game of Twister. features brief introductions to toy collecting and the history of toys, as well as a directory of selected children's toy stores and toy manufacturers.  We hope you enjoy browsing our site.

Representative Children's Toy Stores

educational toy

  1. Toys R Us
    This toy retailer offered an extensive selection of children's toys and games.
  2. Crayola
    Visit this online store to find colorful items such as crayons, colored pencils, markers, chalk, and paint.

Toy Resources

  • Toy Safety (Business)
    This CPSC publication deals with toy safety issues from a toy manufacturer perspective.
  • Toy Safety (Consumer)
    This CPSC page features a menu of toy safety articles, primarily from a toy consumer perspective.

Toy Supplier Directory

  • Toy Store Directory
    This children's toy store directory lists toy retailers and suppliers throughout the United States of America.

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