As Little Miss Sara grows, so too does her need for mental stimulation… For that reason, the last few days have been an online ‘hunt’ for toys… Yip, with Christmas coming up soon, and the Little Lady nearing the next developmental milestone (18 months), it’s time to switch out the toys! But toy shopping for a toddler is no easy task!
Bustling with energy, and full of curiosity, every day for a toddler is filled with opportunities to learn. Toddlers are just starting to explore their surroundings, and playtime offers them the chance to exercise their muscles, develop their social skills and put their imaginations to the test. A great ‘toddler toy’ should stimulate as many of their senses as possible, and should involve a lot of repetition. Toddler toys should be colorful, durable, easy to clean and safe (ie – no small, swallow-able parts). Puzzles and toys that get your little one active are also a great option.
Lets take a look at my Top Fifteen picks by age (affiliate links* for convenience)
Twelve to Eighteen Months
At this stage, everything is still a very new, sometimes scary, experience for your little one. They may have started walking, but are still a little nervous to explore too far on their own. Toys for 12 to 18 month olds should encourage them to strengthen those little muscles, and introduce them to new and exciting stimulation with the use of lights, colors, textures and sounds.
With its wonderfully inviting shape, this toy is not only large enough to sit inside to play with the built-in activity center, but it also encourages toddlers to stand up and get dancing. Tapping on the crossbar activates lights and music, and even introduces your little one to the ABC’s, basic numbers and more! There are even three stages, so this toy is going to be a firm favorite long past the 18 month mark! Retail price is $59 – Amazon has a great deal at the moment, only $45.60 … that’s a 25% discount!
Children are so receptive to languages at this age, so the fact that this activity table is bilingual (English – Spanish) is just great! There are also 5 separate, very cool play areas, one on each arm of the star, offering your little one many opportunities to learn and explore. I just love the little telephone! The legs come off easily, so the table can also be used as a floor toy, making it even more flexible. Get yours from Amazon now!
The laugh and learn crawl around car is another super cute, action packed activity center for toddlers. There are numerous different activities for your little one to explore, and the fantastic shape of the car itself encourages your child to develop their imaginative play skills. Wouldn’t this look great wrapped up underneath the Christmas tree? get your now from Amazon.
This little workbench activity center is perfect for all your little industrious munchkins. Let them bang and tap and roll and whoosh, perfect for building those fine motor skills, and then when it gets to be just a little too much, switch onto ‘quiet mode’… love it! Every toy should come with ‘quiet mode’, don’t you think? Amazon has then marked down from $27.99 to $22.99, a great saving!
The Tomy Jumbo Jamboree is just so much fun! I love the fact that it’s both a puzzle and a whole bunch of musical instruments in one! Your little one will have a blast making music and figuring out what goes where. I love the selection of colors, and how easily the separate parts fit back together. Even the younger musicians should be alright with this one. Get your very own TOMY Jumbo Jamboree and see what you think.
Eighteen to Twenty-Four Months
Once your little one hits eighteen months, they really start to explore the world! Everything is an invitation to touch! The best kind of toys for 18 to 24 month olds are the kinds with lots of switches, buttons, ‘pullies’, toggles, and so forth. Your little one is developing their fine motor skills, so toys that encourage them to sort or fit things into a specific space are great.
This ‘See and Say’ from Fischer Price is a wonderful toy and educational tool all in one. Your little one gets to play and sing, all while learning the names and sounds of all our favorite farm animals! Old MacDonald ‘aint got nothing on this! In fact, i’m heading over to Amazon right now to order one for Little Miss Sara!
This piggy bank toy from Fischer Price is a great way for little fingers to get in some much needed fine motor practice. The cute song encourages your child to deposit the coins into the slot, and introduces your child to the basic numbers in a fun, relaxed way. It is also a wonderful way to start teaching your child about the concept of saving, in a non-threatening, age-appropriate way. There really are so many reasons to head on over Amazon to and pick one up today!
What a super fun toy! Build your own track, listen to animal sounds, alphabet songs, and all kids of other cute conversation, and have hours of fun! The track comes with one VTech Go Go smart animal (a rhino) but you can buy extra from Amazon for as little as $6.99 each. I have checked it out, and i can find no real reason for VTech o have discontinued this product (ie no safety issues etc), so, all that the ‘discontinued means, is that we get to enjoy a discounted price, but we need to hurry, before they all sell.
This Deluxe Box of Fun from Duplo sure does sound like fun! I mean, what toddler does not love blocks, right? These blocks from Duplo have been perfectly designed with little fingers in mind! There are lots of colorful blocks, many different shapes, and the options are truly endless! Your little architect is going to love this one! better get it quick… Amazon has a great deal on, only $37.49! (normally$49.99)
I absolutely love this activity/playhouse combo! I can just see Little Miss Sara spending hours passing the balls back and forth, opening and closing that cute little door and carrying out job after job on the little work bench. This would be great indoors or outside on the patio (be careful of leaves blocking up the ball funnels), and is guaranteed to become one of those toys that still lives in your house ten years from now! Amazon has a FANTASTIC deal on – $99.99 instead of the usual $149.99… that is an unbelievable 33% discount! Big time savings!
Twenty-Four to Thirty-Six Months
A two or three year old toddler is already a very busy, independent little munchkin. By this age, they’re able to learn so much! Toys for your 24 to 36 month olds should be mentally stimulating, and should offer them multiple different play experiences. Children learn quickly at this age, and will get bored with something if they’ve figured out the one and only way to play with it.
Most little ones love imitating Mom or Dad, and this little Number Lovin’ Oven from LeapFrog is a wonderful way for kids to enjoy imaginative play and a relaxed, toddler-friendly introduction to maths all at the same time! Get your now from Amazon now, and watch your little one’s face light up as they serve you pizza pie’s, cupcakes, breakfast and more!
This is one of the coolest take on an ‘old-school’ toy that i’ve seen in a really long time! I love the fact that the track uses magnets… there’s definitely an opportunity for some beginners STEM activities here! Hours and hours of fun! And to top it all, Amazon has another super deal on – $22.99 instead of the usual $49.99! Less than half-price!
This Code-a-Pillar from Fisher Price actually lets your little one program where the caterpillar is going to go! They can switch things up by changing the parts, and see which way he goes. I love the fact this STEM toy introduces our little ones to a skill that is becoming so highly sought after! Amazon even has an add-on pack of extra lights and sound if you really want to spice things up!
When Kayla was little, we used to have the old model of this, and we took it everywhere! She loved it! Even if your little one is not reading (most 2 and 3 year olds are not), there are still so many fun things to do! Absolutely, head on over to Amazon and grab yourself one of these! Be sure to take a look at the related products and choose your little one a couple of extra books too!
This is another fun, super colorful activity set to get your little one thinking and building. There are so many different ways they can put the gears and cogs, your child is going to love creating all that movement! Learning Resources Gears! Gears! Gears! is another fantastic introduction to STEM, and only $22.99.
Well, there you have it, my favorite toddler toys. I hope you’ve found something you think your little one will like. There really is nothing like watching your child tear open that packing, that smile on their little faces. Hopefully, the toys we’ve chatted about will bring you both many wonderful memories.
*All that this means is that i get a small percentage of the sale, i ‘spose as Amazon’s way of saying ‘Thanks!’ for sending some business their way. I use those proceeds to help with the running of our household, and towards the upkeep of this site. Thank you for supporting BrightnBrainy.