On Toys.

Presents

"You have come, of course, into an art gallery full of pictures and felt that sense of beauty that seems at first overwhelmng. Then little by little,  you select here a picture and there another that, for some reason or which which you cannot analyse, seem to satisfy you or meet your need or mood of that moment. The old critic may deplore your choice and deride your taste, but choice and taste they remain.

Now has it ever occured to you that a toy shop is like that to a child- a child art gallery? The breath almost leaves the tiny body  in the midst  of all the first wonder. The little hands reach out as if to snatch each seperate object, yet even as they close around a woolly dog, perhaps, the dancing eyes discern another toy quite different, one entirely unperceived by the elders looking on. Lead the child away if you will, but note how impatient he becomes to return to where he may feast his hungry gaze once more once more on that one toy- perhaps the very last toy you would have picked out for your child, just as the pictures you picked out in the art gallery were the last that a criic would have picked out.

Do you realise, you father or mother, what deep meaning may lie hidden  behind your child's selection of that special toy? Do you understand the essential need that may prompt the want? It is often there, and if parents would only seek to analyse the child's express desire , even for certain toys, child education and child welfare would in a very great measure cease to be the bugbears that they are today to all too many parents. The fact is, we parents are too prone to select our children's "toys" to suit our own tastes rather than the needs of the little ones for whom they were designed."  

The Girls Own Annual, 1917.