Pretend play is key in your child’s development, encouraging imaginative play and their social skills.
Depending on your living space and what your child gravitates to, you’re likely to find yourself getting some pretend kitchen gear or a shop.
If you want to go all out on their mini shopkeeper experience, you have to check out the Basar Shop by ethical and high quality German toy brand, Selecta Spielzeug.
The picture shows what it could be like when you stock it up, but the Basar Shop itself features one back panel with eight compartments plus a shelf, a side shelf which can be placed on either side, and a counter with two shelves underneath.
It’s made from ethically sourced birchwood and is a seriously cool investment piece for bringing out the entrepreneurial streak in your mini shop owner or market stall holder. Dimensions: 107 x 82 x 102 cm and it’s suitable from 2 years and is Â£146.71 from the Selecta Store.
If you’re keen to buy a pretend play shop for your toddler but don’t want to break the bank, try the Pintoy Shop (pictured above) Â£89.99 or the Pintoy Table Top Shop, Â£69.95. Both are suitable from 3 years though.
You could accessorise with Selecta’s own cash register Â£46.49 which rings, has a merchandise plate and play money and receipts, but you can get the wooden Santoys Cash Machine for Â£16.50 at ABC Toys and it has a built in calculator and the same ethical credentials.The Selecta one is suitable from 2 years whilst Santoys is 3 years though.
The Selecta scales are Â£46.49 and include 7 labelled weights to help your child learn how to weigh, or you can get a Santoys scale (left) for Â£14.95, which is without the weights but obviously infinitely lighter on your wallet! However…a bit of digging and I did find solid wood weighing scales (left) with 4 weights plus moveable balancing weights on the beams and an indicator for Â£9.99! Bargain!
There are lots of places to get pretend play food so do shop around. Try TotsNToys, We Love Toys, Wooden Toy Store, and if you want to stock it to look like a supermarket shelf, you can get 2 shopping baskets full of ‘branded’ food items in various cartons for Â£9.99 (pictured right).
Limiteds has a really large range of realistic pretend play food from vegetables, fruits, bread rolls, coffee cream and all sorts starting from Â£1.25, which is brilliant for filling your shop (or pretend play kitchen) with foods that reflect more of your family values and encourage positive attitudes towards stuff like fruit and veg.