Now as you know I’ve been out of Australia ( or this blog would have been on time, Right!). I have bought back a collection of toys,
bought out of what we would call a newsagent, that are Christian themed. They were purchased from Amy’s Hallmark Shop in New York between the United Nations and the Blue line. I could not imagine doing that in Australia. Even in a toy shop, if I was lucky I might find a Noah’s Ark, but that would be it. Even in a Christian book shop it is extremely hard to find christian toys (yes I know I said book shop!! so of course I shouldn’t expect to find christian toys in there?).
It is not politically correct to stock anything that points to a faith, especially a Christian faith, at home, hence the overtop excitement that I could not just find them, but have a choice of items off the shelf.
Now as you know I advocate the use of some generic toys to elicit a spiritual response from children, everyday items that can be easily found in our stores, for example Ikea heart cushions, blocks, play mats; I suggest making felt pictures, and using colouring in pages, to tell stories. But where can we find Christian toys in Australia? The internet is fabulous but sometimes in this area it is also not our friend, as many sites will not send outside the US, so unless you can pay for an American post box ( I believe Australia Post has a system for doing this) or have a Us bound friend, we are let down by this option too.
Here are some options I have found, they are not comprehensive, so if you know of something please let us all know. Maybe you have been inspired to set up your own company making Christian toys, please feel free to let us know, or maybe you are one of the American sites who can find a way of making your products easily available to the ANZAC market, agin please let us know.
St Paul’s Melbourne shop https://cathedral.org.au/cathedral/shop/sells beautiful tactile timber nativity sets ( the set I bought for Wesley Church Melbourne have teeth marks showing that our little ones cut their teeth on these figures both figuratively and theoretically)
Godly Play Australia lists some men’s sheds that will make Godly play figures http://godlyplay.org.au/materials/
Gepetto’s Toy shops, have great Noah’s Arks http://geppettosworkshop.com.au/sassafras/category/playtime/noahs-ark/
Though not selling Christian products this company does have some great christian motifs in its work, from the cross on the tent material and play gym crosses, to the angel chairs ( mouse chairs) (wouldn’t you love some of those in your children’s space in church)
Try http://www.nurturebright.com.au/store/index.php?route=common/home before they go.