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Play Therapy: Mattel, Alibaba Use Artificial Intelligence To Develop Interactive, Educational Toys

Update Date: Feb 16, 2017 08:30 AM EST
Mattel's Fourth Quarter Profit Drops 46 Percent
Play has a tremendous impact on the children’s cognitive, emotional and social growth. (Photo : David McNew/Getty Images)

Play therapy helps children communicate with people to prevent or resolve psychosocial challenges. Two of the biggest e-tailers in world, Mattel and Alibaba, team up to develop interactive and educational toys to aid child development in China.

Mattel is reported to market and sell its toys via Alibaba's platform Tmall.com. Using artificial intelligence, the two companies will develop new and innovative products through interactive learning. Consumers can expect the educational toys to be in the market middle of this year.

Margaret Georgiadis, Mattel CEO, believes that play has a tremendous impact on the children's cognitive, emotional and social growth. The company expects to help parents in China raise children to be at their personal best. Play is a fun and enjoyable activity that can elevate the spirit and brighten the outlook in life. Toys are also considered as the children's words.

Georgiadis added that Mattel has an unmatched expertise in childhood learning and development. On the other hand, Alibaba has an immense reach and unique consumer insights. Mattel's core brands include American Girl, Barbie, Fisher-Price and Hot Wheels.

Play therapy, which has been around for 70 years, allows the adults to see how children see the world around them, how they think about the people in their lives. It also allows the therapist to intervene and teach the kids skills to manage whatever struggles they are going through, according to Brigid Christianson, a licensed clinical social worker.

Play therapy is common to children aging three to 11 years old. Usually, a therapist observes a child playing with toys such as play houses, pets, dolls or cars. If the child has a disturbed behaviour, the cause can be determined during the course of play. However, some experts say that caution should be taken when using play therapy for assessment or diagnostic purposes.

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