Toby is turning 5 soon and already, he is the epitome of a gamer. He loves it. Pokémon, Mario, Minecraft… even the games that Adam bought for playing with Reuben such as Transformers – something that has never really interested Tobes – grabs his attention and he is demanding to be allowed to play too.
We don’t discourage gaming for Toby either – I know a lot of people would. There is such an emphasis on avoiding technology or giving children only educational apps, but I have never really bought into either of those philosophies. If Toby loves to game for pleasure, but is also happy to read, explore outdoors, play and create then what does that matter? So as we have a little gamer on our hands we have been thinking about what we should give him for his birthday in November. Everything he has asked for has been gamer or animal based – from a new guinea pig to anything pokemon, Mario or minecraft related. We’ve talked it over and over and over and decided that we are going to get him a Nintendo switch. It has all the games that he loves, it’s something he can take with him, something he can play at home and it is exactly the kind of present that he would love. Not for everyone, I have no doubt, but knowing Tobes the way we do, it’s rather spend one lump sum on that than spend even more buying lots of smaller things that he will probably only play with a few times.
So there you go!
We actually made a decision shortly after we had tears from both boys for missing a local comi-con. They were away with their Grandparents and absolutely gutted that they missed it, but for different reasons: Toby’s were all about minecraft, pokemon and Mario and Reuben’s were all about Lego, transformers and vintage toys. Ever since then we have been looking for a similar event, something that would be fun for them and cater to what both of them would enjoy and not only did we find it but I think we knocked it out of the park:
The digital kids show.
Set in Manchester on November 18th, 19th and 20th the Digital Kids Show really couldn’t be a better fit for the boys on paper and we can’t wait to visit. I hadn’t ever heard of this show before, though last year was a gleaming success, and I’m so pleased that they go in touch with us after a conference I attended and asked if we would like to come along. A bit like those baby shows that you attended when you were knocked up but instead this will be showcasing the very best in tech toys (ahem, Reuben!), family games and media (Toby!) and a fab line up of family activities. The show will have 4 hours of live shows from TV stars and YouTubers that will appeal to all the kids and grown ups alike, from Diversity to YouTubers like of Ali-A who is responsible for those gaming videos that you will somehow have managed to subscribe to. I get the feeling the boys will probably be less likely to be interested in Diversity than I am, but you know, mama loves a dance sesh, so we will be watching that one.
Obviously with Toby being so little, it’s a bit concerning that he is wanting to play games that have the potential to link to other users – at the moment we have a block on all of that, minecraft is on story and creative mode only and pokemon go can’t be linked without Adam as he has no idea how to do it… but it’s going to be great for Adam and I to learn more about online safety for the kids, as the show has experts to chat to and learn from.
So why am I telling you? Well, partly because I find it really frustrating when I hear so many people trying to justify that their kids like gaming from a young age – there is nothing wrong with it – and secondly because I asked the Digital Kids Show for a discount code for my followers and readers, which they kindly offered up for you! Just input the code TOBYROO at the checkout and BOOM, parenting gold secured. Fancy coming along? You can buy tickets here.
Hope to see you there!