When you have a toddlers at home, it is always safe to check all the pockets of their clothes before you put them in washing machine. You may never know what they may have collected that day. It could be a piece of small chalk from school or a beetle or frog on their way home or in the garden. You don’t want those things to go into your washing machine, do you?
Why Children Hoard things
You may have noticed how your toddler carefully unusual objects and treasures them. Though most of the objects your toddler shows interest in may seem useless to you, in her wold it is something new and exciting; hence, naturally she wants to examine, explore, touch and may be taste it as well. Often they love to have a collection of similar objects like pebbles, chocolate wraps, feathers, shells, bugs or buttons. Though those piles of useless objects may appear silly to you, know that you child is learning a lot from his own collection.
Not driven by adult compulsions like market value of the products, their usefulness or how to benefit from them, toddlers just value those simple things as great treasure and find happiness in their world. Don’t look at their treasure with your adult vision, instead look at them with the eyes of a child.
First step towards organizing things
Though a simple act, collecting different things will teach your child important life skills that may come in handy throughout his life. One of the skills that is visible is the planning and organizing skill your child exhibits in the collection. Don’t you see how well they plan to pick up their favourite things and then organize and keep them in order? You may be amazed at their skill quite often.
Children learn in being responsible with their collection as well. Since there is no adult supervision in this activity, the child creates this world on his own. They have whole control over it and also they take responsibility in keeping it safe and secure. This will be their first step towards independence.
Your toddler may stop collecting things in later years, but the impact of their first hobby will have a lasting impact on their lives forever.
How can you help
Don’t try to change your child’s entertainment into profitable hobby by guiding them to collect stamps, coins or something you consider worthwhile instead of useless things. Let the child enjoy their own treasure and their beautiful world when they can.
Never call their collection useless to break their hearts.
If your child wants to share a story about his wonderful treasure, show your excitement and enjoy your child’s innocent world. You can use this collection to teach them to count and segregate things according to size, color etc.
Help your child to see fine differences in their collection which is an essential cognitive skill necessary for their intellectual development.
Help them understand and observe the details about the feather or pebble so that they will have a better connection with the world they live in.
You can encourage the collection of your toddler since it will improve his thinking skills. You can make your child present his collection for the whole family once in a while to teach him presentation skills in early years. It can be great fun for everyone as well.
Moreover, if you had some collection of your own in your childhood, it is time to bring it out and start enjoying it all over again with your child once again.