Kids have a blast playing at being grown-ups. That’s why toys that emulate adult activities are some of their favorites. This is the case with toy kitchens, gadgets that will allow the little ones to get started in the culinary arts. Their greater or lesser number of accessories will provide them with the most entertaining moments.
Toy kitchens are items whose size is proportional to that of children. For this reason, their imagination will run wild as they become the cooks of the house. In case you are thinking of acquiring one of these toys, below you will find a series of tips and recommended products to make the right choice.
The most important things
Toy kitchens are one of the best examples of symbolic play. It allows the child to put himself in the shoes of an adult by performing everyday activities. Real and imaginary life are thus combined.
These toys are ideal for children from the age of 3 years and up. Available in a wide range of sizes and designs, there are even models suitable for older children up to 10 years of age.
When selecting the ideal model, take into account aspects such as the manufacturing material, the accessories included, or its safety.
The best toy kitchens on the market: our favorites
At a certain age, imitation games are the most popular among children. They allow them to get to know what the environment around them is like. Without a doubt, toy kitchens are one of the best examples in this area. Take a look at some of the most outstanding models of toy kitchens that it is possible to identify in the market.
What you should know about toy kitchens
Sometimes, it is difficult to keep our children entertained for more than 10 minutes while we do our chores. Have you tried toy kitchens? These items dazzle them so much that they are like falling from the sky. Here are some of the most frequent questions you may have about them.
What are the benefits of play kitchens for children?
For a while, toy kitchens were items aimed exclusively at girls, but, due to the values they promote, they are suitable for both girls and boys. First of all, they are educational toys, as they teach them about something as basic as food. They also instill healthy habits.
With the kitchenettes they learn to be self-sufficient and the environment around them. It will be a space in the home that will become more and more familiar to them.
The imagination of the little ones is also favored, while they acquire values such as organization, problem-solving, and teamwork. They also help them develop their motor skills.
What are the basic parts of a toy kitchen?
It is possible to identify more and more realistic models on the market, and the kids will love to feel like the chefs of the house! Just like in a real kitchen, the surprising thing is that these toys incorporate some of the most important parts. In this way, symbolic play will be more satisfying and the experience much more authentic.
The most complete toy kitchens, then, have a stove area, where kids can give free rein to their imagination. They also usually include a sink with a faucet, refrigerator, oven, or microwave. We cannot forget the different shelves and drawers for storing kitchen utensils or the washing machine.
Where is the best place to install a toy kitchen?
The location of the toy kitchen will depend on each home and, especially, on the space available for it. Some parents prefer to install it in the child’s room, along with the rest of the toys. In this way, the little one will always have all of them at hand. Another common location is the living room so that we can watch him while he plays.
Finally, some parents prefer to install the toy kitchen in the kitchen at home. Why? Because it offers a more authentic perspective of reality. Besides, the kitchen is one of the places in the home where we spend the most time, so he’ll always be with him. Finally, it allows you to take full advantage of the potential of imitation.
Are toy kitchens easy to assemble?
Depending on the model of the children’s kitchen, it may be larger or smaller and/or more cumbersome. Hence, in most cases, these products are presented disassembled. But don’t worry because, generally, assembly is easy, especially if you take into account that they are accompanied by step-by-step instructions.
In the case of wooden kitchenettes, screws and other fastening devices are usually required to assemble the pieces. On the other hand, there are other simpler models made of plastic that only require fitting the pieces together, without the need for screws. Check the difficulty of assembly by examining the product characteristics.
Are toy kitchens worth it?
At best, play kitchens are unnecessary. At worst, they are a distraction from the important work children have the drive to do. They are expensive, they are huge and they breed clutter. Kids don’t need fancy, mini pretend versions of practical tasks.
What is a good age for a toy kitchen?
Most kitchens are recommended for ages three and up, but one- and two-year-olds love getting in on the action with their big siblings. There’s always something new to add: fruits and veggies, pots and pans, cupcake sets, sandwich-making kits, and beyond.
Why are toy kitchens so appealing to children?
There is no doubt that toy kitchens are a real eye-catcher. During childhood, practically every child ends up with one of these toys in his or her possession. The truth is that there are several reasons for their success among the youngest members of the household. Here’s why they are so attractive to them.
- Because of their bright colors. It will depend on the design and the materials used, but, in general, toy kitchens are very eye-catching. It is, therefore, impossible for them to go unnoticed among the little ones.
- They incorporate different compartments. Children love to open and close drawers, store objects and move them around. The fact that the kitchenettes incorporate so many nooks and crannies (some of them secret) is an added attraction.
- They have several scenarios. In a toy kitchen, children have a variety of settings and thus play possibilities at their fingertips. They can cook on the stove, wash dishes in the sink, put food in the refrigerator, or place pans on the shelves.
- They can play in the company. These items allow them to play alone or together. This way, they can work as a team and have more fun. They can play with their best friends, with their parents or with any other family member.
- They are adapted to their size. These toys come in the perfect size for them, so they can have a more realistic experience.
- It makes them feel that they are older and independent. By performing the same tasks as their parents, they will feel like big kids. In addition, the independence that this game gives them will help their self-esteem.
If you are thinking of buying a toy kitchenette shortly, there are certain aspects that you should take into account. There are more complete and innovative models on the market, but also simpler ones. The first thing to do is to find out exactly what you are looking for. Here are the main buying criteria to make the right choice.
Of course, design is the first detail to consider when choosing a toy kitchen. First of all, you can look at their colors. Keep in mind the tastes of the small in this regard, ie, if you prefer pastel shades, shrill or pink, among others. There are models of vintage aesthetics and others inspired by their favorite characters.
Look at the theme of the kitchenette: if it is similar to that of a home, a restaurant, or resembles a hamburger, for example. We must also refer to its dimensions. It is essential, therefore, that you decide where you are going to install the kitchenette and measure the space for it. If you do not have much space, you can always opt for a folding one.
On this point, there is a diversity of opinions. Some prefer wooden kitchens, because, in their opinion, they are of better quality and also fulfill a decorative function. This is of importance, especially if you plan to install its insights, such as in the kitchen or living room. They are more durable and resistant, although their price could be higher.
Another option is plastic kitchens. These are the most common. Among their advantages, we highlight their resistance and easy assembly. Finally, we must refer to kitchens made of cardboard. These have the virtue of being very light and easy to transport. However, they are not as resistant as the previous ones.
Age of use
In the packaging of toy kitchens, the age recommended by the manufacturer is usually clearly indicated. Generally, these items are suitable for children from 3 years of age, as children under this age may not get the most out of them. Depending on the recommended age, their size will vary.
Those models aimed at children from 3 years and older usually have a height of around 60 cm, totally adequate for their recipients. However, the reality is that they are toys that cover a huge age range. There are even larger models suitable for children from 7 to 10 years old, so even the older ones will love them!
Another aspect to consider is the inclusion or not of accessories. Don’t forget that these are a fundamental part of the fun and, if they are not included in the set, you may have to purchase them separately. The variety of accessories in a toy kitchen is as great as in a real one. Of course, the more that come, the more satisfying the experience!
Some of the most common accessories are plates, cutlery, pans and pots, food and all kinds of kitchen utensils.
We can also find salt shakers, sauces, cutting boards, rags, or coffee sets. With all of them, the game will be 100% realistic. Finally, some models include sounds, lights, and other effects.
If the toy is not only entertaining but also safe, then there is no doubt that you have made the right choice. When it comes to the safety of the kitchenettes, first of all, you should make sure that the materials used are non-toxic and suitable for children’s use. They mustn’t have sharp edges or elements that could pose a risk.
You know that children put everything in their mouths, so it is vital that the accessories are not too small, as they could choke. In any case, the idea is that your eyes are always on them. Finally, make sure that the kitchenette is stable enough so that there is no risk of it tipping over during play.
We can’t guarantee that your little one will become a great chef later on, but what we do guarantee is that he will have a great time with toy kitchens! With them, he’ll be able to come up with new recipes and experiment, letting his imagination run wild. The hours will go by very quickly and you will have the peace of mind that he is happy and entertained.
Who hasn’t played with one of these little kitchens during their childhood? The best of all is that they are toys that never go out of style. If you notice, they are simple, but at the same time they are transmitters of very good values, so a 10 for these toys! By the happy face of the child, you will see that you got it 100% right.
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