According to my dad, one for much hyperbole, his family were so poor when he was growing up the only toy he had was a potato head. Wow, we thought, a Mr Potato Head. That’s pretty cool. Nope, not a licensed Playskool Mr Potato Head, an actual potato. Like a spud. He would dress it up in potato skins, play with it for a few minutes and then it would be tossed into the pot for dinner that night.
Bricks, broken of course, were also play things and according to him, it was his creative mind that came up with games like ‘skop die emmer’, out of sheer necessity, because all he had around the house were old tins to stop the leaks coming through the non existent roof.
You can only imagine his shock and surprise each year as he sees the new toys that are available. Remote controlled cars, computers that fit in the palm of your hand, credit card sized music players, dolls that talk, pee, poo and cry.
This year he’s going to be super impressed with the VTech Storio that I’m getting Emma. It’s an animated E-Book for children aged between three and seven years old. The interactive animated storyteller enables kiddies to watch the story and read along AND there’s the story dictionary which allows the kids to check out the meaning of difficult words. They also develop an understanding of the letters, vowels and phonics. And there’s parent-friendly extras to help monitor their progress and reward them with personalized certificates.