Toys that make noise drive me insane. I’m assuming I’m not alone in this. I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to avoid all toys that make noise—I’m not even going to try. I’ve accepted it and I’m moving on, though we keep them to a minimum.
One of my favorite toys that Orison ever had was a toy phone that I got him for Christmas 2005. I remember it so well because the music and noises were quiet! Imagine that, toy manufacturers making toys that parents can stand to be around!
I’ve tried to locate this particular phone so that you all could know which one is awesome, but they must not make it any more. It was a little light-up, musical phone by Chicco. Here’s photographic proof:
For his birthday a couple months ago, my parents just sent Orison these really cool cars that go super fast when you shake them. The boy loves them! The mom loathes them. Perhaps that’s too strong of a word, but they do drive me nuts. They have to be the loudest toys I’ve ever been around. What were my parents thinking?! Don’t they remember what it’s like to have young children???
But I was at a kids’ birthday party awhile back and overheard one of the dads talking about putting tape over the speakers to make the toy quieter. I immediately barged into the conversation and pleaded, “WHAT?!?! What do you do?!?!”
“You just put some packing tape over the speaker if you want to make it softer.”
I’m struck dumb with the sheer genius of this idea.
Then another mother in the conversation said, “Well, I tried that with one of Zoe’s toys, and it didn’t do enough, so I stuck sticky tack into the holes.”
I’m thinking, “People, you are changing my life.”
Here’s something to consider: I remember when we were helping with a preschool Sunday School class a few years ago. They shared that one way to get kids’ attention was to lower your voice to a whisper, and then everyone quiets down to be able to hear. They attend better to that change in volume, rather than raising your voice above the sea of 4-year-old voices. And it worked!
Is it possible that the same could be true for toys? Rather than trying to be the loudest toy in the room, could it engage a child better if it were softer?
Anyway, I’m off to arm myself with packing tape and sticky tack, to see if I can thwart toy manufacturers’ attempts to give my children conductive hearing loss.