Health

Toys and games to improve the physical and emotional well-being of children


market analysis

Carmina Meneses – TOYS b2b12/05/2022

The Technological Institute of Children’s and Leisure Products (AIJU) has presented its 32nd edition of the AIJU Guide 2022-2023, with a study focused on analyzing how the pandemic and confinement have affected the well-being of the little ones, highlighting that this situation It has altered the mental health of 30-45% of children, causing an increase in anxiety, boredom and pessimism.

The AIJU Guide 2022-2023 was presented during the Juguetes Pre-show celebration, at the end of October in Altea (Alicante).

The AIJU Guide 2022-2023 includes a study with 600 families with children from 3 to 12 years old, focused on analyzing how the pandemic and confinement have affected the well-being of the smallest. The results highlight data such as that the pandemic has altered the mental health of 30-45% of the children, causing an increase in anxiety, boredom and pessimism. 50% of children are sadder and angrier.

Regarding social skills, confinement meant a reduction in time with friends for most of the children (70%), although technology became an ally in this regard, since its use increased by 47%. % allowed the virtual relation. Likewise, the pandemic also had negative consequences on children’s nutrition and their sleep, since between 20-25% of children suffer from more sleep disorders. On the other hand, digital technologies occupy most of children’s free time, with an increase of 71%. More than 40% reduced extracurricular activities, decreasing physical exercise.

Lastly, it should be noted that more than 40% of the families surveyed believe that the pandemic will have an impact on the future of their children, especially on their ability to relate to friends, their emotional well-being and their quality of life. In this sense, toys and playing with friends can help to reverse these situations, promoting social skills, the healthy enjoyment of free time and generally improving the physical and emotional well-being of children.

Promote children’s awareness

Play and toys are learning tools that can contribute to the development of social and civic values ​​in a simple and fun way from childhood. Thus, AIJU has developed the ‘Childtizens II Project’, whose objective is to promote, through play, children’s awareness of social values ​​related to sustainability, gender equality, accessibility and multiculturalism.

To this end, a system of icons has been created that allows easy and visual identification of the games and toys that contribute to raising awareness of positive values ​​in childhood. To obtain icons, games and toys go through a detailed analysis process in which their characteristics and the role they can play in the development of social values ​​in childhood are evaluated.

The presentation ceremony of the AIJU Guide 2022-2023, which took place within the framework of Pre-show Toys, had the support of the Minister of Sustainable Economy, Productive Sectors, Commerce and Labor, Rafa Climent; the general director of the Spanish Association of Toy Manufacturers (AFEJ), José Antonio Pastor, and the director of AIJU, Manuel Aragons. From AIJU, they emphasize that the AIJU Guide currently continues to be the only existing guide in the national context endorsed by consumer institutions in which only products that have passed pedagogical and usability studies with more than 100 hours of free play are recommended. In this edition, 29 groups of companies and manufacturers have participated, contributing a total of 109 products for study, of which 103 were selected to appear in this guide.

According to the director of AIJU, Manuel Aragons, this guide is intended to be a consumer aid instrument, which analyzes the information from the expert, family and evolutionary point of view of the child himself. All recommended products have been subjected to exhaustive studies to demonstrate their suitability for use and their psycho-educational and playful value. For his part, the general director of the AEFJ, José Antonio Pastor, stressed that this guide is not only a reference for consumers when selecting the requests of the Three Wise Men, but is also an exponent of the main bets and innovation trends in the toy industry: education in values, sustainability and inclusion. Fun is guaranteed. And finally, the coordinator of the AIJU Department of Child User Research and Pedagogy, Pablo Bus, points out that this is one of the most important projects of AIJU, as it allows it to act as a flagship project, defending and monitoring the importance of gaming in the childhood. It has a great impact on families and society in general and, given the large participation of companies, allows direct advice on R&D in the development of new products.

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Sustainability enters the top 10 toy purchase criteria

32% of families say they take sustainability into account when buying a toy and 44% consider that the current supply of sustainable toys is low or very low. According to the coordinator of the Children’s Research area at AIJU, Pablo Bus, although sustainability is one of the 10 most important factors, aspects such as quality-price (62%), educational value (56%) and children’s request (46 %), continue to be the main purchase criteria.

This is one of the conclusions of the study carried out by AIJU, with 2,800 families with children from 0 to 12 years of age, and in which the perception of sustainability in the world of toys by consumers in Germany, Spain and Spain has been analyzed. , United Kingdom, France and Italy. In addition, it is reflected that, for 79% of the families surveyed, a sustainable toy is related to being easily recyclable, followed by that it is made with recycled materials and/or that it is made with natural materials. And 75% associate the sustainable toy with wood and cardboard materials, also indicating that it is durable.

The presentation ceremony of the AIJU Guide 2022-2023, which took place within the framework of Pre-show Toys, had the support of the Minister of Sustainable Economy, Productive Sectors, Commerce and Labor, Rafa Climent; the general director of the Spanish Association of Toy Manufacturers (AFEJ), José Antonio Pastor, and the director of AIJU, Manuel Aragons. Rafa Climent has indicated that more and more companies have gone from seeing sustainability as an expense to seeing it as an investment. Thus, it is necessary for administrations to anticipate and help companies with budgets and tools to integrate sustainability into their strategies.

In conclusion, the environmental problems that most concern consumers are, mainly, the optimization of energy use (66%) and climate change (57%). To combat these problems, consumers think that the measures that should be promoted are educating children in responsible consumption (56%), promoting recycling and reusing products (53%) and reducing the consumption of plastics ( 51%).

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AIJU Technological Institute of children’s and leisure products


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