Role- play toys help kids to learn about their environment and enhance their social skills.

Toys!! when we recall this word, our flash back memory link us with our happy childhood moments. All toys with whom we grow and their association in our beautiful life learning, all comes into glimpse.

As a young child, girls had craziness to play kitchen-kitchen. When I was very young I remember one of my neighbor friend make all kitchens set item by clay, and within a wooden box we arranged them all. But yes we were so lean into that we skip doing our homework. One of her sibling who was quite elder than us and who believe that, these things are wastage of time; we should be focus on our  learning on our homework cause these things on real mean gonna make our future bright ahead… so he took that box and throw our  kitchen toys away… of course we were sad, cause only we know the value of our  sincere efforts to shape those all objects. Somewhere it left an impact on my subconscious mind. But still I found somewhere I have eager towards toys, that’s lead me here to understand the value and utility of toys ..

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Toys that help children express and understand emotions, and social relationships are known as Social Toys. These toys help children to develop social and language skills as well as help in emotional development.   They develop their verbal language as well as body language though play –sharing and role playing. Role Playing Toys or Pretend Play Toys are toys that children play with, to imitate real-life roles. Pretend Play Toys are very important for a child’s emotional development. These toys help in nurturing the imagination to play socially and help them to develop  emotionally. These toys help them to learn about their environment and enhance their social skills like language, body language, etc by encouraging interaction.

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Dolls and kitchen miniature are very popular toys in the pretend Play category.  Usually girls are seen playing with dolls from a very young age. Children enter the world of fantasy by playing with the dolls and kitchen toys while they imitate the real life roles. This helps them to be become aware of their environment around them and enhances thinking, creativity and imagination in children. They are comfort object for many children thereby providing them emotional support and enhancing their social communication skills.

 

Toys vary across country, culture, and families but on real means toys for children are beyond culture, country, cast and religion. Indian Toys are made of various kinds of material like wood, cloth, bamboo, metal, paper, plastic, clay, rubber, coir, papier-mâché, shells etc. Indian Toys are known for its craft value and the rich culture it represents.every toy has its impotence n values, they create their own impact the way u implicated.

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The ‘Wooden toys’ are the one of the ancient craft of Varanasi.

Varanasi, said to be the oldest living city in the world, we referred to called as “Banaras” and “Kashai”.  Varanasi is a famous pilgrimage spot for Hindus; there are number of temples on the banks of Ganges. Tourist visited Varanasi for the peace of mind and to wash away all their sins in the Ghats of river Ganges. That is how Varanasi Ghats consider as the place of divinity.

http://www.malagar.in/sketch-book-of-agra-and-varanasi/
photo credit: Muralidharan Alagar

 

The Art and culture of Varanasi is quite unique. It has rich cultural tradition with the combination of archaeology, mythology, history, geography and art that makes Varanasi a center of Indian culture. The ‘Wooden toys’ are the one of the ancient craft of Varanasi. The sets of birds, animals, orchestras, soldiers and dance ensembles are made in wood, gaily painted and packed in boxes. The toys can be found in all sizes — from a 1 inch mobile to a large 2 feet tall doll.

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photo credit: Prashant Sharma

The beauty of wooden toys is in the fact that they are carved by craftsmen and painted by them. They show a perspective of life. Craftsmen make them according to their knowledge of history, Indian mythology, Mahabharata, Ramayana, etc. Wooden toy makers are the few craftsmen, who are pursuing the art of toy making over generations. A set of artists are only skilled to make the toys of wood and finish the structure for paint and there are separate families of artists whose soul job is to paint the toys.

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The toys studied can be classified into following categories- religious, cultural, animals & birds, and traditional and modern toys. All these themes have toys treated in a different way—for example—religious toys are generally hand carved, and painted gaudily, they exhibit Indian motifs and patterns. These toys also tell mythological and religious stories of their time.

The cultural theme based toys shows the classes of society, the daily lifestyle and activity of the people in rural India and also some profession which were popular in ancient India. Whereas, the modern toys are generally 3 dimensional, made by turning and have modern patterns

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photo credit: Prashant Sharma

 

Selecting the right kind of wood for toys is very important. ‘Kemah, Chilbil’ and ‘Haldu’ wood is used for making toys but they largely use Chilbil. The wood block as per the size of the toy to be made is cut from the log. The piece is cleaned and sanded to get a smooth surface. The design of the toy to be made is traced on this piece. Extra wood is chipped off according to the design. Sometimes the whole toy is carved out from a single piece of wood whereas in some cases, different body parts are carved separately and joined together with adhesive

Carving is followed by painting. Bright and gaudy non toxic colors are used to paint the body. First, the toy is dipped in distemper. When it dries, it is neatly painted with duco white paint. Two such coats are applied followed by the last coat of lacquer to bring shine to the surface of the toys. In the process of fine painting work, brush made out of the hair from squirrel’s tail is used for painting. They do not finish one piece at a time. They prepare one color and paint all the samples in a batch of toys with it and let it dry before they start with the next color. In one day, one painter finishes at least 20 pieces.

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Lacquering is done on a lathe in the lac turning method. Lacquer ware toys are produced in this way. Thus, the craftsmen manipulate the stick where several colors are used. Some of the lacquered pieces are painted with a brush. Non-toxic colors or acrylic based poster colors are used.

Channapatna city is famous as “Gombegala ooru” (toys town) in Karnataka.

Channapatna city is famous as “Gombegala ooru” (toys town) in Karnataka. the name itself suggests what it is famous for- wooden toys. it is located in between Bangalore-mysore highway. Channapatna toy makers keep one of our oldest traditions alive, Channapatna  is  a small city  yet it has a prominent name in the field of art and handicrafts. The lacquered channapatna wooden toys are known for their highly fashionable appeal which is made with bright and vivid colours. The finishing of these wooden toys is very smooth and eco friendly.

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Tipu Sultan

History indicates that the origin of these toys can be traced to the reign of Tipu Sultan who invited artisans from Persia to train the local artisans in the making of wooden toys. Bavas Miyan is the father of Channapatna Toy. He is the one who sacrifice his life for channapatna toys. He adopted Japanese technology for toys making and help the local artisans improve their art.

Channapatna toys are made of a specific type of wood called “Aale mara” (Ivory- wood). For nearly two centuries, ivory-wood  the main wood which were  used in the making of these toys,though rosewood and sandalwood were also occasionally used.

Geometrical instruments like the vernier caliper and the divider is used frequently to measure the size and maintain the accuracy.at this stage the product is removed from the lathe and in case of two different parts they are assembled together and then followed with suface embellishment which involves other decorative adorning on the surface of the toy.

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the natural vegitable colour extracted from natural element as yellow from turmeric, blue and  black from indigo, orange from  kanchi kum kum power, red from natural alizarin and kum kum power, green from indigo and turmeric, light brown from katha, dark brown from ratanjyot. Vegitable dyes has high permanence and durability and  ensure that the toys and dolls are safe for the use of  children.

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The real charm of channapatna is that the craft is not practiced in large-scale industries and factories,but within­­­ the confines of small homes.In  reality, the entire toy making industry is a small scale industry. Some are so small that the work is done right outside the homes of these skilled artisans. But the majority of them shop are where four to six people can work together. This aspect has certainly made a mark on the international circle.