When our kids get toys, it’s not unusual for them to rip off the packaging before they’re out of the shop, and get bored of the play options on offer by the time afternoon snack hits the table. This is just part and parcel of being young, right? Most parents certainly aren’t surprised when they see last month’s must-haves piled at the bottom of the wardrobe!
In reality, though, while a normal part of being a kid, this behavior teaches some pretty negative lessons about the value of belongings overall. Hence why many parents are starting to encourage their kids towards more positive alternatives like collecting.
It could be that your child is already passionate about an easily collectible item like baseball cards. Or, you may need to get them started by buying them their first few rare coins or stocking up on something more familiar, like the Happy Holidays Barbie, a plush My Little Pony, or something similar. Either way, encouraging them into a long-term collection could well help your child to flourish in the following unexpected ways.
Teaching financial responsibility
Most kid’s toys are cheaply made and designed to be purchased with pocket money from one week to the next. By comparison, collectible and rare items tend to have a far higher price tag that your kids will likely need to save for over at least a few weeks. This can be a great way to teach about the importance of saving money without necessarily needing to give boring lectures that they’re unlikely to pay much attention to. Even better, the reward at the end of these periods of saving ensures that your kids are a whole lot happier to do it all again without so much as a push in the right direction from you in the future.
Playing the patience game
Collecting can also be a great way to encourage your kids to be more generally patient, not just in terms of waiting before they can buy things, but also because they’ll need to practice patience when it comes to not ripping open packages or damaging those items once they have them. This is a far cry from the typical toy packaging you’ve seen discarded in seconds and is guaranteed to have a fantastic effect on how they approach any given situation in the future.
Social plus points
For shy kids, especially, hobbies like collecting also provide some fantastic social opportunities. Local or school clubs that relate to their hobby are especially likely to help them forge immediate connections with people who share their interests. Equally, you could see about starting some sort of collectible club at the school, and thus help your child to make friends that may even be in their class, but that they might have been too shy to speak to otherwise.
Admittedly, young children are unlikely to engage in collectibles unless you make this a joint activity, but for children from around the age 10+, this can be a fantastic hobby that’s well worth helping them to hold onto.