What jewellery is your child interested in; rings, earrings, bracelets, ankle bracelets and necklaces? Children and teenagers see popstars, Disney characters and TV characters wearing jewellery and want replicate their style. There are also other reasons why children wear jewellery: religious, cultural, choice, fashion and medical.
Fed up with your children borrowing your jewellery for dressing up? Why not encourage children to get creative and make their own. There are many kits on the market but children can also design and make their own jewellery by using an assortment of inexpensive materials; pasta shapes, beads, buttons and plaiting string. Jewellery making improves concentration and encourages perseverance, especially when using fiddly material which requires careful threading. Jewellery making gives children an element of choice as they can choose the pattern created from beads/material/colour/shape/size, making each item personal to them. Once your child has completed their jewellery, they will feel a sense of achievement at their creation. Children may want to make jewellery for friends and family, like friendships bracelets, developing social skills.
Jewellery is often regarded as being special; so when children are mature enough to look after a ‘special’ piece of jewellery they can develop a sense of responsibility and often feel a greater connection to it.
“The beads are so pretty. They look real, like the ones my mum has.” Girl aged 9
From a safety point of view, it is important for adults to monitor young children in the making process to prevent small beads from getting swallowed/stuck and elastic/string getting tied around necks. It can be hazardous to let babies and young children wear jewellery, as some items may be sharp or earrings could get pulled out when playing. There is also a choking hazard if a necklace gets pulled tight. Children can also become allergic to the metal used in jewellery or toxic paints, so be vigilant of any rashes or marks on the skin.Tags: creative play, Good Toy Guide, Jewellery, Prize Draw, role play
This post was written by Dr Amanda Gummer