You can fill in the blanks here.
The fact is that play in the physical world stimulates the brain in unique and necessary ways. As a result, the brain develops properly. In primitive societies, and in the early days of the human race, children no doubt played with sticks, sand, stones, water, mud - even, dare I say it, animal guts, brains, etc. Do you really think they did not?
Research tells us that as early as 6 months the unborn child is ‘playing’ with the umbilical cord, a soft and squishy material not dissimilar from some polymer compounds that have been sold in the toy category. This manipulation of gooey, granular, and otherwise kinesthetically satisfying materials is key to human brain development.
There are few brains and guts for kids to play in today, even mud may be in short supply. So the canisters of gooey, squishy and other textural compounds, often sold in toy stores, will continue to answer that need as long as we have hands to manipulate them with, and brains in need of said development.
You can learn a lot by listening. By talking, you merely hear what you already know. By listening you may learn something new. So says the current Dali Lama and truer words were never spoken. To give credit where credit is due, the above we learned from a recent conversation with an industry expert in such materials.