Toys: The Next Generation
Friday, Mar. 26Toys: The Next Generation
Students to unveil prototypes of new toys designed to promote child development
BY TERESA PITMAN
A good toy keeps the baby happy while you’re throwing dinner together or calms your toddler when he or she is fed up with being in a car seat. But a really good toy, says Prof. Susan Chuang, Family Relations and Applied Nutrition, helps promote your child’s development.
With that in mind, she created a major project for her second-year class studying infant development: researching, designing and building a prototype for a new toy.
“The creativity level is pretty phenomenal,” says Chuang. “This is our fourth time doing this, and in the past years, no two toys have been the same.”
This year’s toys will be introduced to the world at “The Next Generation of Toys” March 31 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the University Centre courtyard. The U of G Bookstore is sponsoring the event and providing light refreshments.
“There will be 70 to 80 new toys on display,” says Chuang. “It’s a great opportunity for parents to come out with their kids and see what the students have designed. They’ll learn a lot. The students really know what’s developmentally appropriate and can talk to parents about the features they should look for when buying toys.”
Each toy has to be based on developmental themes taught in Chuang’s course, and the students work in groups of no more than four to form a company, research toy design and create a brand-new item for babies to play with.
Each year, the students present their products in class seminars before unveiling them at the public event.
“The students take this challenge very seriously,” says Chuang. “I encourage everyone to come out and see what they’ve accomplished. You’ll be amazed.”