Child psychologists say that's a good idea, because certain types of structured play can entertain as well as build skills for children as the grow.
"Everybody says oh they are just playing as if you can't be learning and playing or working and playing at the same time nothing could be further from the truth," said Kathy Hirsh-Pasek of Temple University.
Researchers at Temple University's infant lab found that when youngsters played with construction blocks with their parents, they used words such as "up", "down" and "on" concepts which doctors say are important for understanding math, engineering and science.
Investigators observed families in three situations: "free" play, which is with any toy, "preassembled" play, where the children are given blocks that have a fixed structure, and "guided" play, where the little ones are given the blocks along with instructions for building a structure.
Investigators found guided play was the most effective, because parents and children spoke the same language.
"Parents used spatial language more when they interact with the blocks," said Nora Newcombe of Temple University.
Researchers say this shows playing with an interactive toy is more beneficial to the child than playing with something preassembled especially when the parent is involved.