Top 10 Eco-Friendly Green Toys for Kids

earthopoly monopoly eco friendly toys Top 10 Eco Friendly Green Toys for KidsI used to think that “green” meant essentially what an online dictionary says, i.e., “environmentally sound or responsible.”  I assumed that a green gift to children would be something that contributed to the planet, was easily recyclable, made of safe materials, and durable enough for a generation or two.  That was before I ran across a website, www.Blisstree.com, proclaiming to be the place for inexpensive green gifts for everyone, including children.  As I read the toy descriptions, my misunderstanding became clearer and clearer and the new meaning of green became apparent:  green no longer refers to a item that can be easily recycled; green now means the object has been recycled already. In other words, green toys are mostly what we used to call trash.

Thus, following my initial suggestion, are the Blisstree.com recommendations:

  1. A Fruit Tree
    This is the first thing that popped into my head when I read about this assignment idea. I thought it would be a wonderful gift for those earnest preteen years – a horticulture lesson, science experiment, proof-of-maturity project – that would annually give back in the form of fruit. Healthy trees ready for planting in your area at Christmas time, however, is a variable proposition. A local nursery, of some tenure, in your specific area would be a helpful resource.

    Stark Brothers Nursery, can be perused at www.starkbros.com to get an idea of what you might want, availability, planting times, and cost.

    Apple, apricot and cherry trees start at around $25 without shipping. Planting a fruit tree, or any type of tree, is the epitome of “environmentally sound” and responsible behavior by helping decrease the greenhouse effect and add to positive biomass.

  2. Sprig Toys
    A complete catalog to Sprig Toys can be found at http://www.sprigtoys.com.  My ecological writing skills are no match for the author who included this company in her list of green toys, so according to the Blisstree.com site, Sprig Toys are “battery-free, eco-friendly, paint-free, kid-powered toys made with Sprigwood, a child-safe bio-composite of recycled wood and reclaimed plastic that smells like pine and has visible wood flecks.” The specific toys include play sets and trucks. Only one gift in the entire site is priced at more than $40, although an additional shipping charge does apply. The toys appear appropriate from toddler age to early elementary school age.

    When my sister and my cousin and I were little, we played with a couple of old wooden toy trucks that were so ancient that only a hint of color remained of their original design. They were wood and visibly so, but smelled only of the attic where they were stored. Oh, and they were free to at least a couple generations.

    Sprig Toys are the New Green, my example the old green.  While they will not recycle naturally themselves, Sprig Toys are made of recycled materials that would presumably go into a landfill instead.

  3. Eco-Friendly Tea Set from Green Toys
    For only $28.99, you can buy the toddler in your life an eco-friendly tea set made with recycled milk cartons. The company also notes that they gift wrap the item for free, hopefully with recycled paper.  A colorful tea set one of many toys from the company Green Toys, located at www.oompa.com.

    Green Toys are considered New Green in that they are made from items that would presumably go into a landfill if not remade into toys.

  4. Organic Joobles
    Joobles, made by a company known as Fair Indigo, are hippie infants’ and young toddlers’ versions of Cabbage Patch Kids and Jellybeans.  For $25 each, you can buy a New Green penguin, bear, or lion made with organic yarn and “eco-friendly dyes. Joobles are considered green by their manufacture from organic yarns and nontoxic dyes.  Joobles can be found at www.fairindigo.com.
    Our old green version were those yarn dolls that you made in summer camp with buttons for eyes. While these undoubtedly ended up in landfills and for good reason, I suppose they can’t be considered fully ecological as they weren’t made of organic wool and contained chemical dyes.
  5. Eco Playdough
    This $20 hippie version of Playdough is all natural without any chemicals, artificial dyes or metals. Even the container qualifies as green, as it’s made of cornstarch and is thus 100% compostable.  According to the website, www.giggle.com, “colors include orange, yellow, green, and pink.”  This toy is appropriate for the same age groups attracted to the non-green playdough, that is older toddlers through middle-aged adults.   The use of only natural materials qualifies it as green.

    Our old homemade version of playdough – flour and water – fairly qualifies as green, except when the supervising adult gave us chemical dyes to add some pizazz to the project.

  6. Imaginarium Green Triangle Activity Center
    This is a lot of name for a mere $19.99 and with six different activities and tons of color and texture, it more than lives up to the name. A picture and more information can be found at www.toysrus.com. The Imaginarium is made with “eco-friendly rubberwood and non-toxic paint.”  It would be appropriate for older babies through toddlers.
  7. Eco-Friendly Tool Set from Green Toys
    Green Toys weighs in again with eco-friendly redone milk cartons, this time fashioned into a tool-set and container for $25. A picture of this amazing transformation is found at www.giggle.com.

    Green Toys are considered New Green in that they are made from items that would presumably go into a landfill if not remade into toys.

  8. Cardboard Tree House
    This “tree house style” cardboard house is featured at www.creativetoyshop.com and costs $24.99.  Its sole green attribute is being 100% recyclable which all cardboard happens to be.  This tree house requires assembly – perhaps part of the parental creative process – and is intentionally unpainted to allow for the kids’ creativity.  Appropriate for young toddlers to young elementary school students.

    Our old green style along these lines involved a new appliance for Mom and a giant box that required no assembly or adult instructions for us to figure out how to play in it. It was fully recyclable as well.

  9. Water Blocks by Plan Toys
    These differently-shaped blocks are filled with colored water and designed to teach building skills as well as color skills. Impossible to adequately describe with words, you have to see the picture at www.hazelnutkids.com to understand how the toy is also designed to teach about color and color combinations.  This toy is appropriate for toddlers to college-aged children.

    Water Blocks are considered green by their manufacture which uses “eco-friendly rubberwood and non-toxic finishes.”

    This toy is also the most expensive of the list, weighing in at $40, shipping not included.

  10. Earth-opoly
    This $24.95 eco-friendly copy of Monopoly is made with all recyclable paper, money, soy inks, and game pieces. As described by the manufacturer, “Players buy properties, collect Carbon Credits and trade them for Clean Air.  As they travel the board visiting each impressive land form, they will learn about the planet and pick up Go Green tips from each deed card.  Learn about Earth and how to care for it as you play. There is Traditional Play or One Hour Version.“  It can be seen up close and ordered at www.fatbraintoys.com.

    Earth-opoly is considered green based upon is recyclability as well the the inescapable ecological instruction inherent in playing it.  Appropriate for ages 8 to adulthood.

Read the original article at associatedcontent

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2 Responses to “Top 10 Eco-Friendly Green Toys for Kids”

  1. Where were these gifts when I was a kid? Nonexistent, of course. If I had toys/gifts similar to this, I would have jumped on the green living bandwagon a whole lot sooner. I would have planted more trees in my lifetime based on “A Fruit Tree” gift. This is a positive step in the right direction and I support http://www.Blisstree.com for making these gifts available.

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