What toys does my baby need? It’s a question all parents ask themselves when it comes to birthdays or holidays or just a fun treat. OT and baby specialist, Meg Faure, offers her advice for helping your little one develop through play and toys.
Play is your baby’s work and he will need some tools to get on with the busy task of learning through play. The question is, with so many wonderful toys, which ones should you buy?
Keep it simple
While fancy and expensive toys may seem tempting, the fact is that the more simple the toy, the more enjoyment and stimulation it will provide. Technical electronic toys lose their appeal quickly as their functionality is limited. Simple everyday objects are more versatile and provide more stimulation through imagination and creativity. With this in mind, these are my favourite simple toys:
- Appliance boxes – babies love the boxes that appliances come in as they can crawl in and out and fill a box with things
- Tupperware or plastic container cupboards which can be packed and unpacked provides hours of entertainment
- A simple pot and wooden spoon have a multitude of functions – a drum, a container, a seat, a hat… the list goes on and on
- A plastic tub filled with beans or sand
- A blanket to cover two chairs to make a tent
Toys worth buying
There are of course a few toys that really do enhance play and encourage milestones along the way. These toys need not be expensive but when you buy them, choose quality toys that won’t break or have the risk of coming part and be a danger to your baby.
Listening and language toys
- Board books
- Music CD
- Baby safe mirror toy
Gross motor toys
- Trolley with blocks
- Black scooter for toddler years
- Activity gym for 0-6 months
- Pull along toy
- Rocking horse
Fine motor toys
- A switch toy
- Stacking cups
- Form puzzle
- Shape sorter
- Baby feeding bottle
- Toy phone
So do go ahead and make or buy these toys but always remember that you are your baby’s favourite toy!