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Are educational toys appropriate for the classroom?

Posted at 7:27 AM, Jun 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-16 07:27:45-04

They're a growing fad, especially among middle schoolers, I'm talking about fidget spinners.

These intended educational toys can be very helpful for those with ADHD, Autism, and other learning challenges. But do they belong in the classroom?

As they've become increasingly more popular, these toys are making their way off of shelves and into more classrooms nation-wide, stirring up controversy.

They spin, make noise and some even light up, features experts say can be helpful for those struggling with sensory issues or impulse control. 

But for kids who don't present these challenges, the design of these toys have proven to be more of a distraction.

Karen Selnick, Director of the Huntington Learning Center in Williamsville says, "I think if you look at spinners and their popularity right now, in a middle school, you're going to find a lot of them. Certainly more than the 10 to 11 percent of the population has spinners, that creates a real problem for teachers."

Some schools have taken action into their own hands, banning fidget spinners from campus, others are requiring students who need them to bring a note to school.

Selnick says, it's a conversation that's necessary and presents valid sides.