I realized last week that next year (phew!) I will be celebrating my 20th COLLEGE reunion. It's funny how quickly time passes. Should I still have questions about what I am doing in Speech therapy and still thinking about how I can be the most effective for my clients? I think one of the challenges is staying open to new ideas, new approaches and new activities. The best therapist's I've met continue to question as they get more experienced in the field.
The other big milestone in September is that my son will be turning 5. That means next year he will be going to Kindergarten. I can't believe how quickly he is growing up. We just quarterly daycare report card. On a 5 point scale, he is at 3's and 4s (average to slightly above) on his play and academic skills. And at some 2-3's for listening skills. So I've got a year to help him grow in this area. I think I might try some type of martial arts program to help him harness his energy in a more constructive way. Has anyone tried this?
Anyhow, with all of these milestones, I've been feeling a little nostalgic for some of my old toys. In the hopes of avoiding the Ebay splurge, I thought I'd write about my five favorite childhood toys and one of my favorite therapy toys that is no longer produced. I'm stretching a little-my challenge is NOT to spend 100's of dollars trying to recreate my youth.
5. Fisher Price City:
I collect some of the Vintage Fisher price sets (I have the Sesame Street house and the brown house.) I loved this set growing up-especially the mail car and the fact that you could put mail into each of the door's slits and the crossing bridge with the stop light. The new Fisher Price sets are cute-but I wonder if they still encourage the same amount of creativity. Part of the beauty of the old FP sets is the lack of detail of the figures (round ball on rounded square body) allowed you to pretend the figures were just about anything. I'm seeing more and more character driven sets (Super heros/princesses) which seem to limit play even more to more "movie retell.
2. Treetots Treehouse:
My cousins had this house. I loved that it was set in a tree house and that the dog's house was located in a little bush that you could close. I had the taller Sunshine Family dolls. But then my dad took away the man doll because he didn't think it was appropriate for me to play with a male doll. The 70's were a weird time I guess. Which just meant that I cut off the hair on my Barbies and turned their heads backwards to make the "boyfriend."
3. Paper Dolls
I used to get these at the drug store. They came in a box and each Gingham girl had coordinated color clothing. LOVED to play with these.
4. Sunshine Family Dolls:
I had the taller Sunshine Family dolls. But then my dad took away the man doll because he didn't think it was appropriate for me to play with a male doll. The 70's were a weird time I guess. Which just meant that I cut off the hair on my Barbies and turned their heads backwards to make the "boyfriend." In retrospect, these dolls are a little creepy. I think I yearn for them since they were "forbidden fruit."
5. PrestoMagix: Dry Transfer Games.
These probably came around before they knew how to make stickers so cheaply. I remember them having character sets too. Each set came with a colored scene and the transfer sheets. You'd put them on the scene and use a wooden stick to scratch the back and transfer it onto the scene. I wish they still had these as they seem like really good activities for plane rides.
AND THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY: Discovery Toys Stack & Pop.
I don't have a picture for this toy-it was really simple-it looked like a ring stacker. You had 5 foam disks that you would stack onto a white and blue "launcher" Once you had them all stacked on, there was a little white lever that you could press to make the disks "pop up." It was great to work on initial language with clients. I could get lots of repetitions in between placing disks on the "launcher." I bought three of these when they were closing them out and the last one just died.
What are your favorite childhood toys-or what is the therapy item that GOT away from you?
Next week's challenge? Organizing my families meals and shopping.