Edx Education is anticipating a ‘bumper Christmas this year’. following what it has billed as unprecedented worldwide growth in the educational toy market throughout 2020.
The firm, recognised as one of Amazon’s best-selling educational toy brands, suggests that the combination of Covid-19 school closures and lockdown measures taken across the UK and globally, have fuelled a home learning trend which it believes is set to last “well into 2021 and beyond.”
According to statistics from Technavio, the global educational toy market will grow by $24.30bn from now until 2024.
“Factors such as the increased emphasis on STEM toys, and the increasing number of investments in the market will have a significant impact on the growth of the learning toys market value during the forecast period,” said a senior analyst at Technavio.
In the wider toy market, retailers are seeing a big reduction in impulse buying and ‘pester power’ sales, due to less time being spent in ‘non-essential’ toy shops, combined with cautious spending patterns. This is resulting in parents making more considered buying choices, opting for educational toys with longer play value.
Heather Welch, international brand manager at Edx Education, said: “Open-ended learning toys represent great value as they have endless play options and encourage creativity, critical thinking and independent play skills. Our Rainbow Pebbles are a perfect example of an open-ended learning toy as they can be sorted according to size, shape or colour, stacked to build a structure, or can be used to create a picture or patterns and so much more.”
According to Technavio’s report, sustainable and eco-friendly ‘green toys’ are expected to experience a particularly favourable growth in popularity as parents increasingly look for ways to lessen their impact on the planet.
Welch added: “As market leaders, we recognise our responsibility to find alternative manufacturing processes and materials which are kinder to our planet. We have recently launched eco-friendly versions of some of our best-selling toys, which are made from a natural Fibre Particulate Composite (FPC) material, derived from 100 per cent agricultural waste from rice husks and stems.
“This is a great alternative material as it is fully recyclable, breaks down in the environment and produces minimal pollution with large savings in water and energy during the manufacturing process.”
Since parents have discovered the new world of home schooling, many have witnessed first-hand the multiple benefits of educational toys and ‘child-led play’.
According to a recent FanFinders survey conducted with over 4,000 mums, 76 per cent consider playing and toys ‘vital’ for their child’s development with 88 per cent of mums saying they actively encourage child-led play. The survey found that both expectant mums and those with young children consider education and developmental potential the most important feature of a toy.
“With over 30 years in the educational toy market, we are delighted to see parents embracing home-learning more than ever. Not only does it create a perfect synergy between school and home learning, but it also encourages bonding experiences between parent and child, and gives parents a better understanding of their children and how they learn,” said Welch.
“Learning Though Play has long been recognised as the most effective form of learning for children in early years. The process allows children to ‘learn without realising’ and develops concentration skills, curiosity, speech and language, social and emotional skills, cognitive development, critical thinking, gross and fine motor skills, and more.
“With parents supporting their child’s learning, they are helping build confidence and a love of learning that will last a lifetime.”