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For many centuries, the development of mankind was unthinkable without games and toys – it was they who helped to properly shape the psyche of children.

According to psychologists, toys are extremely important for the development of a child's facial expressions, with their help you can develop certain psychological qualities, and you can improve his physical development. Interacting with his world, which is represented by toys, the child gradually learns to communicate correctly with peers and adults.

wooden toys have been known since ancient times. They are inextricably linked with the cultural, every day and folklore features of the corresponding historical era and the region where they were produced. Archaeologists have found evidence that East Slavic tribes had wooden toys as early as the 9th century AD. However, confirmation of this can only be found in historical documents; there are practically no samples of such toys preserved due to the peculiarities of wood as a material. Even the works of toy masters of the 18th century have survived to the present in very small quantities. Museums and collections mainly display toys from the 19th century.

The simplest specimens are tree knots, only slightly tweaked with a knife. In some regions, spruce cones were used in the creation of toys, which served as arms or legs for wooden figures. Since the wooden toy is inextricably linked with the forest, the figurines are presented mainly in the form of forest dwellers. These are birds, animals or fictional folklore characters, depicting woodcutters or old women with bundles of brushwood on their backs.

There are three most famous historical regions for the manufacture of wooden toys. The first of these has been known since the 19th century. It was located along the shores of the White Sea, on the Onega Peninsula, in the Arkhangelsk and Vologda provinces. Toys made by northern craftsmen are very characteristic. Experts believe that their appearance is due to the influence of the cult heritage of their ancestors. Such toys, with their stingy, columnar appearance, resemble ancient northern idols. Facial features are not drawn too expressively, the figures are mostly cone-shaped, with flat facial parts. The main motives for the production of toys for northern craftsmen are horses, birds, boats, woman dolls and various rattles.

Wooden toy in the modern world

With the development of industry and the invention of plastic, wooden toys gradually faded into the background. Their place was taken by bright and light plastic dolls, cubes and pyramids. For a long time, wooden toys remained just souvenirs but were not intended for playing directly. Recently, due to increased attention to the environmental friendliness of products for children, wooden toys like wooden activity walker, balance board, balance bike etc. are gaining their former popularity again. In addition, according to psychologists, simple and even primitive wooden toys have a better effect on the child than plastic toys with many small details. A child, having built a house from simple cubes, can endlessly fantasize about its external and internal decoration. And picking up a plastic house, worked out in advance to the smallest detail by the designer of the toy factory.


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