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When it comes to a child’s education, anything can be a learning tool; and that includes toys! Educational learning toys immerse young learners in their lessons in a fun, engaging way, while reinforcing the idea that getting an education can be fun. And for teachers of children with special needs, finding creative ways to connect with students is especially important, making toys in the classroom an asset.

If you fall in that last category, then AblePlay toys are what you should be looking for. In short, AblePlay is a toy rating system that provides parents, special educators and therapists with comprehensive information about the developmental skills those toys promote. Digging a little deeper, this rating system focuses on eight areas of child development—cognitive, communicative, emotional, social, sensory, physical, technical and adaptive—and highlight in what capacity they can specifically help children with disabilities.  

Here’s a deeper look at the skills AblePlay toys focuses on:

Cognitive: How toys help children develop processing, reasoning, memory and analysis skills.

Communicative: How toys enhance a child’s ability to communicate both verbally and non-verbally, especially those who struggle with comprehension and language use.

Emotional: How toys empower children and give them confidence.

Social: How toys help boost a child’s imagination and his or her ability to interact with others.

Sensory: How toys impact a child’s ability to gather, process, regulate and understand information gathered through their senses.

Physical: How toys aid the development of both fine and gross motor skills.

Technical: How toys teach children to bridge the gap between technology and play.

Adaptive: How toys make play accessible for children with special needs.

Always striving to create educational toys for every type of student, including those who have limitations in the classroom, we at Miniland Educational have a handful of AblePlay toys in our inventory. Read below to find out more about them, and most importantly, what they do for young learners with special needs. Have fun learning!

Pair Game: Learning Values

This activity-based game has 12 colorful task cards that teach children about gender equality, tolerance, diversity, respect, good behavior, traffic signs and vocabulary. Pair Game earned four out of five stars in physical, communicative, cognitive and social/emotional development.

Pair Game Updated Super Pegs Mini

Perfect for kids under the age of five, this pegboard game has four different types of pegs, each in one of four primary colors. The goal is to match the pegs to their associated patterns, encouraging creativity and motor, visual discrimination and cognitive skills. Super Pegs Mini was rated highly for physical and social/emotional development on the AblePlay rating system.

Super Pegs Mini Product Updated

Emotiblocks

This award-winning game has characters with interchangeable pieces, allowing students to experiment with 100+ character combinations. There are activity cards that go along with the characters and personalities, teaching special needs students about vocabulary, how to recognize and identify facial gestures and basic emotions, and about the importance of tolerance, empathy and racial diversity. Under the AblePlay rating system, Emotiblocks earned four out of five stars in physical, communicative, cognitive and social/emotional development.

Emoti Blocks Main 

Child Development and Emotions: How to Teach Emotional Intelligence In the Classroom