Toy stores are full of possible gifts for your baby, but picking a toy that’ll catch her attention isn’t always as easy as it could be. Toys that whir and buzz and sing attract our attention as adults, but will your toddler see past the lights and action? Construction toys are always interesting, but it isn’t always clear whether young toddlers are ready for them. Books are always a welcome gift, especially as little mouths have probably worn a few down already, but they don’t always look as exciting when they’re getting ripped out of wrapping paper. So what will really entertain and delight your 2-year-old?
What becomes a favorite toy varies from child to child, and potentially from day to day, but classic toys like brightly colored construction blocks are a good choice. Interlocking plastic building bricks that are on the larger end of the scale will help your toddler develop her fine motor skills. Oversized cardboard blocks can be stacked and counted, knocked over and used as ramps. These types of toys can be shared at play dates, with grown-ups, or independently for hours of creative play.
Toys requiring batteries to buzz, blink and whir that are geared for this age group include trucks and cars, cooking utensils and talking dolls. Miniature versions of real things, like kitchen sets and pretend power tools, help encourage creativity and emotional development. your baby can pretend to stir soup, mow the lawn, or talk to a relative on her play phone. While it’s adorable when toddlers mimic parents and caregivers’ actions, it’s also an important developmental step - when your baby plays pretend, she is practicing social and emotional behaviors important for the rest of her life.
When thinking about gifts for your baby's birthday, it’s her own interests that are the best guide for her gifts. if your baby points and giggles at cars and trains, a train set or a big dump truck could be a wonderful toy. If she is more of an “actions speak louder than words”-type, an experience-gift might be the way to go - a trip to a local dairy farm to see cows closer, or perhaps a picnic lunch or snack at a new playground could make her day. Children love spending time with their parents and extended family, and the chance to share a memorable experience can mean as much as any toy.Gifts for your baby can be as unique as she is, or as practical as new reading material. Two-year-olds can have fun and learn during their playtime with almost any toy given to them, and a day spent in a new place, experiencing new things can be delightful for the whole family. In the end, it’s your time, whether it’s spent playing with your baby and a new toy or not, that makes the best gift.