As the end of the year draws closer, that can only mean one thing: Christmas is coming.
With the festive season nearly upon us, and as parents, you might be starting to think about what presents to get for your little ones this year. But with the various environmental challenges facing the planet, you also might be wondering whether it’s time to start looking for some sustainable children’s toy alternatives.
Here at Gibsons, we have a wide range of board games, jigsaws and card collections available, all of which help to minimise our environmental impact on the planet. Over the past few years, we have worked hard to reduce the plastic in our board games and puzzles. Now our puzzles are all made from 100% recycled board and secured with tabs rather than shrink-wrap to reduce single-use plastic waste. You might think that because the packaging is more sustainable, that it lacks in quality? Nope! All of our games and toys have quirky packaging designs that boldly stand out from the crowd.
Made in the UK and Europe, we only use the thickest board on the market for our jigsaw puzzles, as well as working with a whole host of talented artists to bring you fresh cool designs, from nostalgic scenes to mesmerising prints. We’re also working hard to make our games collection plastic free, and games like Quirk and The Card Game for Rebel Girls are made right here in the UK. So if you’re looking for that perfect gift for your little one, whether it’s for Christmas or a birthday, Gibsons have got you covered with our range of sustainable children’s toys and board games.
But hold on - we know what you’re thinking: “why should you be considering reduced plastic alternatives in the first place?” We’ll explain everything in the blog below, as well as selecting a few of our favourite Gibsons games for you to consider for your next purchase. Let’s dive in!
Why should you look for sustainable children’s toys?
Well, you probably already know the answer to this one. We’ve heard a lot on the news about the damage that plastic, in particular, is having on the environment. In fact, plastic is all around us wherever we go - from our cars to our phones and even when looking for children’s toys.
You may not realise it, but plastic toys make up a big part of the plastic waste that fills the planet's oceans and landfill sites. According to a survey done by the British Heart Foundation, 1 in 3 parents admits to having thrown away toys in working conditions. According to statistics, 90% of toys are constructed of some sort of plastic, which translates to a lot of plastic pollution.
Most plastic toys take hundreds of years to degrade; they break down into smaller pieces until they become what's known as microplastics. Besides damaging the Earth's ecosystems, these microplastics are also now thought to be entering the food chain, as well as our bodies.
We've all become more aware in recent years of the next to reduce our plastic consumption. But there is still more work to be done by the government, industry and by us, as consumers. Unfortunately, recycling the plastic we use isn't enough. And simply recycling plastic doesn't justify its use. We all need to make efforts to reduce our usage of plastic before it's too late.
Here are our favourite sustainable children’s toys alternatives:
Here at Gibsons, we understand why you would be looking for more sustainable toys. It can be incredibly difficult to refuse to put something in your basket when it is all wrapped up in plastic and tempting you even further with its bright packaging and good design!
However, when you consider the harm that plastic poses to the Earth's environment, wildlife and us, opting for a sustainable alternative is a no-brainer. Just take a look at some of our favourite picks for younger children below!
What better way to teach your children about the importance of protecting the planet’s wildlife than with a 100 piece jigsaw puzzle that depicts creatures from the natural world?
Wonderful Wildlife is one of our many sustainable puzzles made especially for our Little Gibsons collection. Tucked up beneath the vast green land are some furry friends catching up on some well-earned sleep. Whilst outside, the day is young and the wonders of nature graze the flower-lined meadow on a beautiful summer’s day.
Like all our jigsaws, Wonderful Wildlife uses biodegradable clear labels to secure the lid instead of shrink-wrap, and we also no longer pack our Little Gibsons puzzle pieces in a plastic bag, making this product sustainable!
There’s no denying that kids love anything that is on wheels! That’s why this bumper box contains eight different puzzles with a variety of fantastic vehicles, such as a fire engine, a digger, a train and a bus; all of which are waiting to be discovered by your children.
The puzzles range from 4 to 16 pieces, making them perfect for children aged 3 years and above. The drivers all sit on specially shaped pieces, which means they can be swapped between the different puzzles; you can put a paramedic in a tractor and a firefighter in an ambulance! And the best part? The puzzles are made entirely from paper and cardboard, reducing the impact they have on the environment in the long run.
Rockpool is the perfect mix of easy-to-play but hard-to-master children’s board game. Players are tasked with collecting the most shells and cleaning up rubbish from the beach before the tide comes in. Younger players will love collecting shell cards and will soon learn to be strategic about how and when to Shout as they can only use each of their team cards once.
Rockpool provides hours of entertainment for your children, but it is also instructive in educating them about the harmful effects of littering on beaches and the detrimental fluence of plastic waste in our seas. A message we can all get behind, not just young children!
A classic staple in traditional card and board games, memory games like Superhero City and Sweet Dreams are not only fun, but they can help develop important memory and observation skills in young children.
But it’s not just kids who can benefit; it’s always good for adults to refresh their memory skills every so often! In these card games, players test their memory by matching the pairs of 36 tiles which include superheroes and animal characters.
Quirk is a hilariously funny family card game that just so happens to be plastic-free! Imaginations will be put to the test as players walk the plank, breathe fire and squawk like a chicken, encouraging you to embrace your silly side!
This exciting game is also made right here in the UK, minimising the environmental impact it has on the planet. Why? Games that are manufactured overseas rack up large carbon footprints through overseas plane travel or long truck trips. By supporting a game that’s made locally, you’re reducing fuel consumption and air pollution that’s generated from long distance travel.
Gibsons have a wide range of sustainable children’s toys and games for all ages!
Here at Gibsons, we make it easy to be more sustainable with your children's playtime! If you’re interested in having the perfect hour of fun with your kids, then we have a large selection of award-winning puzzles and board games for you to choose from. Take a look at our Little Gibsons range here.Got a question about one of our games or puzzles? Feel free to get in touch, and a member of our team will be more than happy to help you.