What Are the Best Toys for Toddlers?
Choosing the best toys for toddlers
It goes without saying that toys for toddlers need to be well made. Kids are hard on toys, especially toddlers as they are still figuring out cause and effect, learning about what their bodies can do and testing their boundaries.
As well as being high-quality we also believe that all toys should be sustainably made with the future of our planet as well as our children in mind. So we only stock toys from brands who have ethics we can get behind, from how they treat their workers to how they source the raw materials.
Beyond that though how do you decide on the best toys for toddlers? We think they should be:
- Help them develop key skills
Wooden toys have many great attributes that are perfect for toddlers.
- They are strong. Wooden toys tend to be less likely to break than plastic and if they do break they are generally easier to repair.
- Wooden toys are simpler than battery-powered plastic toys. Choosing toys that ‘entertain' children might seem like a good idea but they make children passive. Give a toddler a passive toy and they have to take the active role.
- The fact that they are simpler often makes them more open-ended. This gives more scope for children's imaginations to run wild.
- Some of the best ever toys are made of wood. Train sets are brilliant as are building blocks. What's not to love.
- Wood is a natural material and much better to engage the senses. Wood is tactile, it has texture and weight to it as well as a natural smell, all of which help connect children to the toy as well as nature as a whole.
The Best Educational Toys for Toddlers
Choosing toys that encourage development is important at every stage. For toddlers, you should be thinking about toys that:
- Encourage fine motor skills.
- Toys for gross motor development.
- Toys that help with cognitive development.
- Encourage role play.
Toys that encourage fine motor skills
There are lots of options here. We particularly love Tegu as its great for all ages, the Small Foot Hammering ball run and the BigJigs stacking train.
Toddler toys for gross motor development
Now your little ones are up on their feet there are lots of toys to choose from that will encourage gross motor development. Our favourites are a balance bike, many of which are suitable from 18months, and a Wobbel Board. Ride-on toys are also popular with toddlers as well as carts they can pull and prams or shopping trolleys they can push.
Top toys for cognitive development
Encourage colour recognition with the Tender Leaf Toys Peacock or shape recognition with any of our gorgeous wooden shape sorters. Simple puzzles are also perfect for this age, encouraging spatial awareness and shape matching ability as well as fine motor skills and problem-solving.
The Beginnings of Role-Play
Toddlers are just starting to get into role play so this is the perfect time to introduce toys that will encourage their creativity and imagination. They particularly love to copy you so a little tool kit, a tea set, cutting fruit or a baby they can dress and push about are all great options depending on what they are into.
Next up: What is the 4 gift rule?