As a Play Therapist I support creativity and self-expression through child-directed play & art based activities. I have found through training and experience that the best toys for children are not always the ones that have flashing lights or connect to the internet. Below are 6 toys that I find help promote creativity and self-expression.
1) Art supplies (paint, crayons, colored pencils, glue, paper, scissors): Allow a child to use their creativity to create whatever they would like.
2) Wooden Doll Family and Dollhouse: Promotes modeling of various family roles and nurturing.
3) Various costumes: Costumes could be bought or old clothes from various family members. Costumes are another great way to allow children to step into different roles while expressing their creativity.
4) Play Dough: Provides a blank medium to create whatever the child can imagine.
5) Musical Instruments: Encourages a child's ability to create rhythmic sounds, beats, their own songs.
6) Kitchen set (toy food, toy plates, toy pots and pans): Another way for children use their imagination to step into various roles.