Not sure what toys to buy a 2-year-old?
As a family we have tried to be more conscious about what toys we buy for the children. Pick brands that are both creatively designed and eco-friendly whilst still being compliant with international safety and quality standards. When toys are plastic, we buy second hand or choose ones that we can pass onto friends to avoid the ‘one use’ wonders. Remember the golden rule, quality over quantity! If you are struggling for ideas read our 10 easy activities to do with a toddler.
So are you wandering what toys to buy a two year old? Support toddler’s physical and cognitive development at this crucial age with age appropriate, educational toys. Buying can be a bit of a minefield as there are so many toys on sale. Two-year-olds want to be independent but can’t always manage it, so choose playthings they can use easily on their own. They also can’t always express themselves through words and, for this reason, toys which allow imaginative play is perfect, to entertain and enjoy! Pick a toy that is just right for a child’s skill level, and you’ll be giving them hours of exploration and will avoid frustration induced meltdowns.
With this in mind, we’ve listed the most stimulating types of toys to buy a two year old that they will enjoy playing with.
#Role play household toys:
Realistic toys for domestic play are loved by children that want to model adult activities. Child size versions of normal household items – such as dishes, pots and pans, plastic food or a tea set – will always be a hit. Encourage your toddler to have a picnic, inviting their favourite dolls and playmates. Make cleaning fun with the Melissa & Doug cleaning set available from Hello Baby for £26.92. This six-piece set is ideal for sweeping and brushing! This colourful, kid-sized set looks just like the real thing and we were impressed by the quality. Being able to help mummy builds a child’s confidence and develop coordination! Don’t forget to practise dressing and undressing with a box of dressing up clothes.
Whilst you may not consider them a toy, picture books and early readers are not for just passive listening. Why not take a peek at our ideas for reading with babies and toddlers. Children are fascinated by the bright colours and friendly illustrations. The rhythm and patterns of reading aloud, help develop longer-term attention skills. Ideal for boys or girls, the wooden Hape Farm Animal Baby Book (£6.99) is the perfect alternative to easily ripped paper children’s books. Children learn the names of animals, shapes etc whilst stimulating and developing visual perception. Check out our top five favourite board books.
#Arts and crafts:
The right side of the brain is our creative half and responsible for visual skills and understanding what we see. Experimenting with painting and drawing is a great way to get your child to express themselves. Magnetic drawing boards, aqua doodles and good old nontoxic paint and recycled paper are perfect. I would choose Salt dough over Playdough for safety. Craft activities reduce stress and offer a healthy way to express their feelings.
#Messy play toys:
All children love to splash, to squeeze, to splatter and build hand-eye coordination! Go out in the garden and build a mud kitchen. On a rainy day grab a box of rice and use stacking cups to pour and play. The Multi Spout Sprayer is ideal for developing dexterity with its nozzles that spurt out water in a range of amazing shapes and patterns. £11.50 from Amazon make bath time fun! If you are buying plastic toys, remember to choose ones that are labelled BPA free. It is all about letting children experiment with different objects. By exploring how things feel, smell and taste, this type of sensory play nurtures an awareness and understanding of the world that surrounds them.
#Ride-on toys to buy a two-year old:
Still a firm favourite with this age range, these toys are a great way for your little one to use up some of that endless energy! Check out our Little Red Rider review.
#Rhythmic instruments and musical toys:
These are some of the most popular toys to buy a two year old. Put on some nursery rhymes and grab a tambourine! Early exposure to music plays a crucial role in ‘wiring’ your baby’s brain for learning. It inspires dancing, clapping, spinning, hopping and singing which builds upon gross and fine motor skills. Which sounds do they like and not like? Creating and exploring music also helps toddlers with sensory development. Make some noise. Experiment with different types of music and encourage your toddler to copy the beat. The Hape 1960’s-themed guitar is the perfect size for younger children to create sounds by themselves. Retailing at £36.20 it includes instructions to learn the basics, so get ready for some rock and roll.
Two is a great time to introduce your little one to building toys like Duplos and blocks to help to improve their hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills. The Melissa & Doug tool bench is available from Hello Baby and is on sale at £23.80. Helping to teach sorting, matching and counting skills the 32 tactile play pieces fit neatly in the box.
Children will develop greater focus and patience. They can saw through the self-stick tabs to “cut” the wood. We did find that as the base is made from soft wood when the nails are hammered in the workbench does get dented.
Other favourites include balls, jigsaw puzzles, dolls, vehicles, animals. This list is GENDER NEUTRAL. Everything on this list is fantastic for both BOYS and GIRLS, and equally loved and used by all. We also promote toys that are not shop bought and encourage sensory experiences such as tin foil space blankets, cardboard tubes, wooden spoons and pinecones!
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Do you have types of toys you prefer to buy for your children, or go to brands that never let you down?