Not that Toy Story
March 12, 2013 8:03 PM   Subscribe

"Galimberti explores the universality of being a kid amidst the diversity of the countless corners of the world; saying, “at their age, they are pretty all much the same; they just want to play.” Photos of Children From Around the World With Their Most Prized Possessions. (previously)
posted by Grandysaur (16 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
These are captivating and poignant at the same time. Indeed, all kids want to do is play.
posted by carter at 8:22 PM on March 12, 2013

Those are touching. I'm looking at those photos of kids with the cast-off toys living in mud huts and hoping they'll grow up to be doctors and writers and engineers.

It could happen.
posted by Loudmax at 8:41 PM on March 12, 2013

So sad. People don't make toys for their kids anymore?
posted by hat_eater at 10:27 PM on March 12, 2013

So sad. People don't make toys for their kids anymore?

*raises hand* I do! Why the other day I took some cardstock and cut out a bunch of paper robot parts so my kids and I could build robots together. And currently I'm in design/planning phase of building them a floating castle for bath time.

My wife made like a bajillion of those little bead lizard things which my two-year-old ADORES. I'm also the person who asked this question about more advanced fort-making and, yes, we do have a whole closet full of PVC pipe that we bust out with the kiddoes and construct unwieldy blanket fort palaces on dreary winter nights.

My father-in-law was always making games and toys for my wife and her siblings when they were growing up. He was a post-WWII refugee so I think the idea of using your money to buy toys was a little difficult for him to accept 90% of the time.

All that said, however, I only know a few other families who actively make toys for their children (we live in solidly middle-class North America). A lot of people don't have the time or maybe the inclination, I don't know. Personally I really, really enjoy the look on my sons' faces when I pull something out of a bag and say "Look what I made for you!"

These pictures are endlessly fascinating. The socioeconomic disparity evident in a few of the photos is troubling and makes me a little heartsick if I dwell on it too long. And is it just me or is it kind of manipulative that the very first photo is the one that depicts the deepest poverty? Actually that seems kind of shitty and exploitive, really.
posted by Doleful Creature at 10:55 PM on March 12, 2013 [1 favorite]

Oh wait, I missed the last one, which is also an image of devastating want compared to many of the other pictures. Maybe I'm wrong.
posted by Doleful Creature at 10:57 PM on March 12, 2013

I thought the Previously would link to this.
posted by Aiwen at 12:14 AM on March 13, 2013

They might not know it, but Chiwa might, those mosquito nets are part of their prize possessions.
posted by Goofyy at 12:18 AM on March 13, 2013

How has Chiwa managed to keep the white teddy bear so clean? Prized posession, indeed.
posted by Harald74 at 12:52 AM on March 13, 2013

I live in the decadent West, but I've made toy for my kids. Eldest daughter has a wooden sword I made (she at once declared it to be a "princess sword") and a simple frame loom, which I (badly!) joined with dovetails. My 5 yo boy also wants a wooden sword, but I can picture the resulting havoc, so I'm a bit hesistant...

The summer before last I was out in the garden making something from deck boards. Probably a planter or something for my wife. The kids were bothering me to make something for them, so in the end I nailed together a "T" from a couple of scraps just to mess with them. The resulting creation was instantly whisked off to the sandbox, and has since been played as bridge, garage, table, ramp and probably other stuff. I think it's still there...
posted by Harald74 at 1:05 AM on March 13, 2013 [2 favorites]

It couldn't get much more decadent than around here, but my kids have variously had swords, shields and Harry Potter wands made out of wood.
Last week my 4yro wanted bunk beds like hers for her Barbies.
Over xmas holidays the bigger boys made a catapult with me.
My wife tends to do the soft toys, and her stuff looks much better than my rough and ready, 'nail it till it holds together' design.
That said, while they certainly play with the stuff we have made, if they were asked for their most prized possession I'm pretty sure the killbot3000 and barbie dreamlaundry would beat them out.
posted by bystander at 3:25 AM on March 13, 2013

And for the post, I love these types of photo essays. I'm working my way through What I Eat right now.
posted by bystander at 3:26 AM on March 13, 2013

Not making toys per se, but forts, cutting up cardboard boxes, building with legos-hot wheels-train track, diggers and dirt, or just dirt in general, 'cleaning' the kitchen, painting, etc. - they're all good ways to make play with kids, rather than having kids play with complex battery operated stuff.
posted by carter at 5:47 AM on March 13, 2013

Here's a direct link to the full series on Galimberti's site. Quite a few more photos over there.
posted by me3dia at 8:56 AM on March 13, 2013

I love how some of the kids have definite themes ... The dinosaurs, the little girl in the cow barn with her gardening tools, and (somewhat off-putting) , the Ukrainian boy with
posted by Fig at 10:10 AM on March 13, 2013

My most prize possession when I was nine was the hatchet my dad got me for my birthday.

I never hurt myself, and I built a ton of awesome forts in the woods. Best toy you could ever get for a kid that age.
posted by dunkadunc at 1:51 PM on March 13, 2013

A friend posted this on facebook and I found this thread on my way to posting it on the Blue.

The one I find most interesting is little Cun Zi Yi in China, because her toys are most similar to the ones I had growing up. Aside from the cuddly stuffed animals, just about everything else I had was intended to foster learning, building, and creating in a gender-neutral environment. I've joked with Chinese friends that my parents Tiger Mom'd me way more than any of their parents did, and now it's almost like I have proof.
posted by phunniemee at 5:55 AM on March 14, 2013

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