German Toy Free

Some German kindergartens have started going toy free with the intent of enhancing empathy, creativity and critical thinking, social engagement with other children, time outdoors, problem solving skills and understanding and liking oneself. The idea came from a study in the 1980s where researchers realised that potential “seeds of addiction” were planted in early childhood. From there, stemmed the toy-free project, which removes the things children sometimes use to distract themselves from their negative feelings: toys. Advocates claim that by taking away toys, children will learn important skills that will better prepare them for life and prevent addictive tendencies as they age.