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DESIGNEDUCATIONALMARKETINGSOCIALTECHNOLOGYTOY Blog

How pandemic has affected toy trends and toy market?

7 November 2021 — by _Fabio_Guaricci

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Since past two years our lives have changed massively in terms of lifestyle, health, earning, vacations, basic needs, livelihood, travel, etc. all the sectors and markets have been affected. And so has the Toy Industry. Today, we are going to read a little about how pandemic has affected toy trends and toy market. To understand this we will also have a brief look at the consumer behavior.

Firstly, during this period of time global toy sales performed well. The primary reason for this resilience is the fundamentally sound foundation of the toy business: that desire of being a parent, to bring joy to their children and to aid to their development, especially in tough times to take their mind off current happenings around them. It is hard to see how this underlying demand driver for the toy business would not continue. The toys market alone is forecast to reach revenues of more than $120 billion by 2023.

Secondly, there is emergence of few second-tier groups of companies who never had a look-in at the shelves of the big retailers and who now benefit from this trend. At the same time is shows a possible threat to both the mass retailers as well as the traditional leading companies. Interestingly, both the trends are gaining traction in the market, which are still affected by the pandemic as well as those that have brought it under control.

How pandemic has affected toy trends and toy market? Faced with challenges to supply chains, store closures and shifts in consumer demands, traditional toys are expected to see an overall slower performance globally. However, a number of categories that fit well with needs of at-home children and adult entertainment and education have seen a surge in early 2020, such as games, board games, puzzles, stem toys, construction and educational toys.

While the trend towards the digitalization of playtime and pastime was already taking strong roots, covid-19 stay-at-home mandates had given further boost to video games and there is a rise in competitive tournaments, e-sports, thousands of new games and educational content in the virtual world. There has also been a rise of cross platforms. The physical games and toys are now available digitally/ virtually with cost saving ideas that people seem to love and enjoy with a vast variety of present out there.

There is a growing demand of Themed toys and games mainly based on social and mainstream media featuring cartoon characters from TV shows and movie franchises. Educational, interactive and multi-functional toys are number two as families choose to buy them as a tool for development. The touch of personalization is also driving innovation and boosting demand for custom-made products. Baby toys are getting smarter and greener as parents are looking for innovative ways to help infants develop basic skills. Building takes a virtual turn with many digital options as well as using creative and reusable compounds with the concept of DIY.

As many toy makers in traditional space have repositioned themselves as entertainment providers rather than “toy makers”, mid-to long-term opportunities and challenges include the need to build expertise and operate across multiple platforms keeping in mind the emerging trends and technologies with conclusive tips like, Integration of Physical and Digital, Appealing to millennial’s nostalgia, Gender neutrality, Incorporating influencers, the unboxing trends, and habit focused toys for specific time.

Edited by – Jesal Patel

ARTDESIGNEDUCATIONALMARKETINGSOCIALTECHNOLOGYTOY Blog

A new way of Education with Experiential Learning

7 October 2021 — by _Fabio_Guaricci

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In today’s world full of technology and advancement, only theory based knowledge isn’t enough. Narmada Bal Ghar is an NGO that works on providing a new way of education with experiential learning by empowering 850+ schools with Classroom Labs, Providing resources to 1100+ teachers and reaching more than 250K students all over the world. They believe in making kids Future ready by developing entrepreneurial skills.

Narmada Bal Ghar was established in 1999 by Bharatbhai Mehta along with close friends and relatives. Managing trustee is Mr. C. P. Shah, Director Jayesh A. Oza, with Advisory Committee members : Dr. R. A. Mashelkar (Padma Vibhushan), Dr. Sudhir M. Parikh (Padma Shree), Dr. Balvant Jani, Dr. Anamik Shah and Mr. Kirit Vasa.

NBG is focused on giving Experiential Learning of science and technology to School Students of age 3-18 years, on School education. For Physics, Chemistry and Biology they have designed 120+, 70+ and 80+ tests for observations and experiential learning by activity kits based on official school curriculums.

Apart from school studies, they also have subjects for co-curriculum that offers Artificial Intelligence and Emerging Technology Initiatives that aids our day to life and are clearly the future in every field:

  1. Computer coding (uses Child compatible Blockly language)
  2. Drone Assembly and piloting (mantling, dismantling, piloting, video shoot, and other uses)
  3. 3D Printing (manufacturing prototypes from deductive to addictive with zero wastage)
  4. Artificial Intelligence technologies (with VRs and artificial screens to expose kids to AI)
  5. Artificial Intelligence products (kids build usable AI products with Plug and Play system)
  6. Digital Encyclopedia (a collection of digitally available resources)
  7. Language Juggler (handling text and speech from physical to digital medium)

They have designed a special place called “Makers Room” for Innovation and Incubators. It is facilitated with tools and product sets for learning, making, exploring new designs and innovating. They can be arranged at the schools or shared by group of schools. Maker room curriculum is designed to ensure skill development and technical ability to qualify for a job or promote enterprise.

Product sets are of those products that

  1. Use A.I./E.T. technologies
  2. Have a real life use and
  3. Carry market prices much higher than the set cost

This “no cost learning opportunity” is designed to reach every income group and the believe every school – teacher – parent can adapt to it. And they also learn – the profit on sale or saving by making rather than buying..!

NBG also believes in gaining Confidence with Character by teaching Music, Dancing, Drawing, Debates, Sports, Yoga, Skating and cultivating general reading habits as a part of Holistic Education. Along with the school knowledge and information, they also work on keeping kids grounded to their Cultural values by knowing the historical stories of their origin. This helps kids to always remember their roots and at the same time advance themselves the emerging technologies.

Lastly, they have also worked on creating competitive platforms to teach healthy sporting competitions that builds skills like, critical thinking, problem solving and group learning. They regularly organize Science innovation contests. The experiments made in these contest are never part of any school textbooks. They are fully designed and prototyped by students. Currently, they are planning for pre-2021 contest at Morbi, Gujarat to accommodate over 150 teams and 600 students.

This everyday changing world offers a million opportunities to those who are seeking it out there. Narmada Bal Ghar provides the necessary vision to look out for those opportunity and help kids gain the required set of skills to turn those opportunities into a chance to change the life, society and the future of the design industry by providing a new way of education with Experiential Learning.

Edited by – Jesal Patel