If you've been thinking of downscaling the presents this holiday season, then you're going to love this new study by researchers at the University of Toledo. It found that an abundance of toys actually reduces the quality of play for toddlers. When given fewer toys, the toddlers focused better and played more creatively. Specifically, the study observed 36 kids ages 18 to 30 months as they engaged in free, individual play. Those given more toys tended to bounce from thing to thing while those with fewer toys focused on each toy longer and in deeper, more imaginative ways.
If you've ever watched your children rip through box after box after box of toys on Christmas morning only to forget about each as quickly as they opened it, then you didn't need a study to tell you this, but it's nice to have the validation . . . and the confirmation that opting for fewer presents this year is not only easier for you, but is actually better for your little ones.