We have always made an effort to try and be intentional about the toys our children have had over the years. We have a few plastic flashy toys, as tends to happen, but we try to make sure there is some good stuff in there too. This series is a list of our families favourite toys for various ages, as help for gift ideas for others. This is being updated as we find new favourite toys (There are a few things we have put away for christmas that, I suspect, will make it onto this list in January)
Textured Foam Blocks – Details Here – There are a few different brands making these. For Australians, I bought my set, similar but not the same as the amazon one, at Clark Rubber about 3 years ago. It looks like Imaginarium has a version out so you could probably find something in Toys R Us along these lines too. These have been great ‘first blocks’. Our babies love to throw them, and they’re soft enough to not do any damage, and they can begin with some stacking even when they’re not safe with the harder, wooden blocks or duplo. In our set, each colour has a different texture which is great, and there are pieces which have holes, and small circles which fit inside, making it’s own fine motor skill activity. All my toddlers learnt their shapes playing with these blocks, we love them here.
Vtech Spin and Learn top – Details Here – There are actually two versions of this. The underwater one which is still available, and a jungle one which has been discontinued. We own both because our girls love this so much. The kids discovered that the baby would respond to the lights and sounds if it was spun/played with beside her. I am not certain of the appeal, and I do not vouch for it’s educational value, but it is seeing daily use around here right now. Be warned, you WILL memorize the song. It IS annoying.