Best Toys for Young Toddlers
Toddlers are constantly on the move. They have an urge to see more, do more, and try new things. For moms and dads, this can be a difficult stage for entertaining little ones!
This is a great time to take advantage of your baby's newfound drive to do things for themselves. You can introduce toys that expose baby to new skills, all while keeping them happy and occupied.
A Guide to Toddler Toy Must-Haves
Toys that Baby Can Manipulate
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says, "toys that can be manipulated, such as shape sorters, stacking blocks, and baby-safe puzzles, are great for a child’s fine motor, cognitive, and perceptual skills."
Get baby stacking with the Oball Anyway Stacker — it's a spin on the traditional stacking toy. This colorful and flexible stacker lets pieces fit together in any order baby likes. And the pieces are perfectly sized for little hands to grasp and hold.
"[There are] several ways you can stack or use the sections which make it interesting to continue playing with - he has played with it many, many times and hasn't become bored with it yet." — Grandmother, Amazon.com Reviewer
“Toy musical instruments, textured puzzles, mobiles, and baby-safe mirrors are excellent multi-sensory options.”
Toys for toddlers are often bright, bold, light-up, and musical. That’s because at this stage, baby’s senses are ripe for stimulation. According to the AAP, "Toy musical instruments, textured puzzles, mobiles, and baby-safe mirrors are excellent multi-sensory options."
Bright Starts Lights, Lights Baby Color Driver: This fun, brightly colored toy is for little drivers! Baby can turn the steering wheel to move the odometer, activate blinkers, and hear opposites. It makes fun roaring car sounds, and baby can honk the horn, turn the ignition, adjust the mirror, and rattle the antenna.
Baby Einstein Baby Neptune Ocean Orchestra: This playful toy introduces your little one to classical music by letting them explore how instrument sounds are combined to create music. It features colorful dancing lights, and is easy for little ones to activate. There are two modes: Symphony, for younger babies, uses a simple "press-and-listen" approach; Composer, for older babies, allows them to add and remove instruments in the melodies.
Baby Einstein Octoplush: This fun animal toy is not just soft and cuddly; it’s a multi-textured pal that introduces baby to colors. By squeezing each leg, they will hear the corresponding color in English, Spanish, or French. A simple squeeze or a hug will play fun melodies. There is also a volume control — a great feature for a weary parent!
"My 3-4 month baby loves this toy. She can already get the Octopus to make the sounds. It's a perfect size for her to grab and hold." — Michelle, mom, and Amazon.com reviewer
A Toy Bin Staple
A ball is a staple for every toy bin. They're also a great way to expose your toddler to new skills. "Cognitively, infants and toddlers learn about the properties of balls: They bounce, roll down hills, are easy to move and difficult to keep still," says Francis Wardle PhD, for Scholastic's Early Childhood Today. Balls are great for play at home, and can be tossed in the diaper bag for on-the-go fun. The Oball Football [link to product detail page] is flexible and bendable. The finger holds make it easy to grasp, throw, and squeeze. It’s a simple and great choice for curious and active toddlers.
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