9 Brilliant Kids Learning Toys & Resources from UK Small Businesses
When it comes to investing in new play and learning resources for our kids, there’s nothing nicer than supporting small businesses. With that in mind, here’s a look at 9 brilliant kids buys to joyfully boost your child’s learning – all from independent retailers:
1. Make Phonics learning hands-on with Mini Writers Club flashcards & activities
Supporting your child with phonics doesn’t have to be tedious. Mini Writers Club founder, Anna, created her fun collections of flashcards and activities to make sure that was the case! Browse the Mini Writers Club shop to discover phonics resources to support all stages, and handy resources like magnetic letters and numicon shapes – great for adding to sensory play or teaming with playful learning printouts.
2. Practice mindfulness with Mindful Kin activities and Worry Stones
Mum of 2, Sal Gould, started Mindful Kin after being inspired by her children’s natural mindfulness, like being able to find the beauty in the small things. She founded Mindful Kin to create prompts that would help nurture this quality as they grew, followed by sensory worry stones to help all children dealing with big emotions or anxiety.
3. Encourage imagination with Tevi Toys
For gorgeous small play toys designed to foster imaginative play and feel great in little hands, take a look at Tevi Toys wooden animals. These sustainable wooden figures are handmade and designed in Cornwall by husband and wife, Jordan & Jim.
4. Get creative with Conscious Craft art supplies
Providing your child with their own art supplies is a great way to encourage creativity. And if you want to shop small for your materials, make sure you browse Conscious Craft. Conscious Craft is a family-run business stocking quality arts & craft brands from across Europe. The perfect place to stock up on oil pastels, crayons, felt tips, glue – the lot! If you need a box to store everything in, see this affordable caddy from Hobbycraft.
5. Learn through rhyme with educational poem cards from ‘Kelly the Poet’
Make learning science, nature, and history facts more engaging with clever educational rhyme cards from Kelly the Poet (a writer, poet, and mum of 2). These cards would make great additions to your learning resources and be left out as an invitation for your child to read or ask questions about what they find.
6. Improve sensory play with an Inspire My Play PlayTRAY
Sensory play is a powerful tool to strengthen fine motor skills and support sensory integration for young children. The downside? The mess can be hard on us parents! The Inspire My Play original PlayTRAY was designed by mum of three and former early years teacher, Laura, as the perfect solution. It comes with two trays (shallow and deep) as well as removable compartments – all specifically designed for messy and creative play.
7. Never run out of play ideas with PlayHOORAY’s PlayPROMPTS
Mum of 3, Claire Russell, founded PlayHOORAY back when she had one baby and was making lists of play ideas to set-up with her little one. As a former early years teacher, and full of ideas, Claire decided to launch PlayPROMPTS to give other parents easy, accessible suggestions of invitations to play. Now there are prompts available to help for every scenario – from highchair play to travel ideas, birthday play to play ideas for at the beach.
8. Invite your child to explore with Print Play Learn’s Montessori-style printables
Whether you’re looking for playful invitations to draw, count, play or explore, that’s what Print Play Learn is all about. No shipping required, you can sign-up and download resources to print out beautiful open-ended learning printables to support your child during the early years.
And one for the grown-ups….
9. Give Sonshine Magazine a read
If you want to learn about raising confident, happy kids, treat yourself to an issue of Sonshine Magazine. Launched by mums of boys Kirstie Beaven and Hayley Grove, Sonshine is a quarterly magazine taking a positive slant on parenting sons, to create a better world for all children – but is a great read for all parents! It follows a different theme each issue and is packed with non-judgemental articles and down to earth humour. It’s also beautifully illustrated by independent artists (who are also parents!).
Do you know of any other small businesses offering playful learning resources? Hop over to Instagram and share your favourites to be featured in future Print Play Learn articles on the best learning resources.