Best Baby Toys
Some important things to remember when choosing the best baby toys are that they need to be soft, easy to grasp, lightweight, non-flammable, nontoxic, washable and shatterproof. Sounds like a difficult list to take into account, but don't stress, the toy manufacturers all know the importance of these points and so most toys will be fine.
Remember too, many children get very attached to their favorite toy so it can sometimes be good not to get something that is so unique it’s irreplaceable!
When choosing a toy you also need to keep in mind that the choice will be different for different age groups. In the first six months of life toys will be used to develop more gross motor control, this means waving the whole arm or leg about and holding things between both hands rather than with individual fingers. Things like wrist and foot rattles or play mats with toys hanging above the newborn are best for this type of play.
At around six months old, sometimes earlier or later, teeth begin to appear. From about three months old the baby will want to chew things. At this stage though, their motor control isn't good enough to handle difficult shapes. If you're getting a teething ring, go for just that - a ring. They are easier to hold onto at this age.
As the baby's nervous system develops their fine motor control improves making it easier for them to grasp smaller objects or use toys that require more coordination. This is when toys like shape sorters, books, blocks and buckets start to become useful.
Then as the baby approaches one year old they are starting to move around more so balls or pull and push toys are more useful at this stage.
For more information on appropriate toys for the different age ranges, check out these dedicated pages for different age groups so you can choose the most appropriate gifts for the baby you're buying for.
Toys for 0-3 months
Toys for 3-6 months
Toys for 6-9 months
Toys for 9-12 months
For some quick suggestions for each age range check out the following suggestions:
Baby Bath and Pool Toys
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