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When babies hit that toddler stage, they start getting really busy. They are exploring and finding all sorts of new things to do. My baby loves music and things that light up. She is fascinated by things that stack and stick together. She loves anything she can push around (including the garbage can).
If you have a toddler like this, then this holiday gift guide for toddlers ages 1 and 2 is for you!
Just Like Mommy
Toddlers this age love doing the things Mommy does. So, toys that mimic daily tasks are a big hit. Play brooms and vacuums, for example, let the toddler feel like she’s just like Mommy. Also, play cooking pots and pans, and play food, make playing in the kitchen easier on Mommy – the regular pots and pans can stay in the cupboard and the toddler can still have a good time. Toys like these help to capitalize on the mimicry toddlers use to learn how things work in the world around them.
Toddlers this age aren’t ready for a traditional bicycle or tricycle. They don’t have the gross motor coordination to move the pedals, and the pedals usually end up hitting them in the legs as they push the vehicle around without pedaling. Instead, I suggest getting these little ones a pedal-free tricycle. This allows the child the freedom of a riding toy in a way that is usable and approachable.
Nesting and Stacking Sets
My toddler loves to stack and hid things, so nesting and stacking sets make for great play time experiences. One of our favorite games to play is “Where’s the Ducky?” We place a mini-rubber ducky inside one of the stacking cups we have, and set it out with the other stacking cups. Our baby gets to pick up a cup, one at a time, and see if she can find the ducky. This game reinforces object permanence with the toddler, as well as develops fine motor skills.
My baby loves music. She is fascinated by Youtube videos created by Alex Boye, and will even ask for some of his songs. But, as much as she loves hearing music, she loves creating music. Anything that can be banged or hit or knocked delights her. So, toy musical instruments are a great idea. (Editor’s note: These toys make noise, so use only if noise is allowed and tolerable. They might need to go on vacations periodically for parental sanity)
Duplos are the great big Legos for toddlers, and my toddler loves playing with them. She stacks, and takes apart, these blocks with abandon and rigor. They are sturdy blocks, and are a lot harder to step on then regular Legos. It’s also fun to sit and create something for my toddler to take apart. Duplos are classic fine motor skills tools and great for little hands to play with.
Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Learning Kitchen
We are big time Fisher-Price fans. Most of our toddler toys are from Fisher-Price, but the one that all my children still play with is the Laugh and Learn Learning Kitchen. It’s fun to watch all the siblings play with the toddler using this toy. They cook food, make the sink sing, enjoy making the oven sound like an oven. My toddler likes taking the food and putting it in and out of the refrigerator. It’s a very well designed toy with the bonus feature that the volume can be turned down. A plus in any busy/noise household.
Any one of these toys are sure to delight toddlers and make their Christmas merry and bright. Happy shopping!