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When my son was only 2 and a half months old we celebrated his first Christmas. And even though he was so young, I wanted to give him a nice present to celebrate this special moment. So I bought a few little toys and 2 baby books, wrapped them with a cute wrapping paper, and placed them under the Christmas tree!
I was so happy to see that gift looking so lovely under the tree lights!
But looking back at that moment I realize that I knew so little about baby toys! I had no idea what kind of toys a baby really needs!
In the next months, I started to look for toys that could help my baby to discover the world around him in a playful way. I wanted the toys to starve his curiosity and to encourage him to develop new skills.
After reading more about baby’s brain development and how smart toys can influence it, I became more aware of the kind of toys that I chose for my son.
What we learned about choosing the best toys
Here are some of the important criteria that I followed when choosing a baby toy:
– I only chose high-quality toys for two reasons.
First, safety is very important when it comes to baby toys. So I wanted to make sure that the toys that I bought were safe for my son. Second, I truly believe that babies don’t need a lot of toys. So I focused on quality over quantity to offer him the toys that I thought that were best for his age.
– I avoided toys with a lot of noise and lights.
In my opinion, they overstimulate the baby and make him more agitated. Also, I preferred wooden toys over plastic toys, especially after reading more about Montessori materials. We still had some plastic toys but only a few.
– We tried to find toys that were suitable for each important developmental milestone in the first year.
From toys that encourage tummy time to toys that are great for accompanying the baby’s first steps. And I looked for smart toys that can help babies develop and practice all the new skills that they learn at this early stage.
photo credit: Monkey Business Images / shutterstock.com
Along the time we discovered many toys that my son loved and that offered him both fun and learning opportunities! This is why I decided to create a toy guide for parents who are looking for the best toys for their kids.
I wanted to make this list as inspiring as possible so I invited two other moms to help me select some of the best smart toys for babies.
I hope that you’ll like these ideas and that you’ll find here some awesome toys for your babies!
1. Sassy Developmental Bumpy Ball
This toy is great for developing baby’s tactile sensitivity. It has multiple textures and materials that the baby can explore.
2. Activity gym
The activity gym was my son’s favorite place in his first months. He learned to reach and grab the hanging toys.
And he liked to enjoy some tummy time on the mat, looking in the mirror!
Here are two nice activity gyms for babies:
Skip Hop Alphabet Zoo Activity Gym
Fisher-Price Kick & Play Piano Gym
3. Musical Farmyard Cube Educational Baby Toy
This toy is awesome for babies! It’s perfect for their little hands and it looks very cute!
4. Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics Baby’s First Blocks
My son played a lot with these blocks! He started using it when he was a baby but he played with it during his toddlerhood too!
The toy allows kids to sort and stack the pieces, identify the shapes, and insert each piece in the sorting lid.
5. Hape Double Bubble Wooden Toddler Bead Maze
Mazes are fascinating for babies and can bring hours of fun! This toy promotes hand-eye coordination and dexterity and it’s a good choice for developing baby’s skills.
6. Infantino Textured Multi Ball Set
This simple ball set is a great opportunity for babies to explore different textures and develop their tactile senses.
7. K’s Kids Pull-Back Vehicle Set
These colorful cars are soft and cute! They have a pull-and-go system so babies will certainly have fun playing with them!
8. Melissa & Doug K’s Kids Match and Build Soft Blocks Set
This set is the perfect choice if you are looking for a building toy for babies. The blocks are soft and light, so it’s easy for young children to lift and manipulate them.
9. Shape Sorter Baby Toy With 2-Sided Activity Bag and 9 Textured Shape Blocks
This shape sorter is great because you can take it with you anywhere and it will keep the baby busy! It’s a good way to practice fine motor skills too!
10. Pound & Tap Bench with Slide Out Xylophone
This toy brings a lot of fun! It’s a very good choice if you want to encourage musical development because babies can pound and tap while playing music.
11. Mini Maracas Toddler Wooden Musical Instrument
This is another toy that encourages musical development. And it’s great for gross motor skills too!
12. Nuby Octopus Hoopla Bathtime Fun Toys
If you want your baby to enjoy bath time, this toy is exactly what you need! It’s cute and colorful and can entertain the baby during every bath!
13. Walk-A-Long Puppy Wooden Pull Toy
My son loved pull toys! We had several ones after he started walking and they encouraged him to practice his balance and coordination.
Pull toy are great for active play and they are really cute too!
14. Galloping Zebras Toddler Wooden Push and Pull Toy
This toy was a great help when my son started walking. It helped him practice walking with more confidence and it kept him busy for hours!
It’s a great toy for boosting a child’s coordination, balance, and physical strength.
15. Large Wooden Conical Stacking Tower
Stacking pieces was one of the first games that my son enjoyed when he was a baby!
A stacking tower is perfect for babies because it develops hand-eye coordination and creativity.
And a bonus: Our favorite Activity Play Cube
This is an awesome toy and can be used for a long time. It keeps kids busy for hours and it challenges them to develop a lot of new skills!
If you want to have only a few toys in your home and you want to invest in one that your child will love for a long time, this is a great choice!
I hope that you liked these ideas and that they will inspire you to choose some awesome toys for your baby!
At the end, I want to invite you to discover a full collection of nice activities for babies and toddlers on my Pinterest board: Activity ideas for babies and toddlers.
I wish you a lot of happy playful moments with your kids!
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⇒ Save these ideas to your favorite Pinterest board
photo credit preview photo: Oksana Kuzmina / shutterstock.com – photo credit Pinterest photo: Monkey Business Images / shutterstock.com
I originally thought most of these wouldn’t be suitable for babies but you don’t realise how much they absorb from playing. It amazes me to watch my daughter learn how to do things from playing with toys.