Since having kids, I’ve been thoughtful about the kinds of toys I give them. I’ve found I prefer simple toys.
In the words of my husband, “The classics are classic for a reason.”
So I look for toys that are simple, classic, high quality, and that inspire imagination and creativity. I prefer to simplify our life and home by having fewer, quality toys that will last and can be played with many different ways. I try to avoid anything that might be overstimulating, such as electronic games or lots of flashing lights and music.
For three years I’ve been assessing toys through this lens, and I’ve come up with some toys that I love for toddlers. Here are my top 10.
Top 10 Simple Toys for Toddlers
- Blocks. You can’t get more simple than this, yet the possibilities for play and creativity are seemingly endless. Wooden blocks are so classic, but I also love MegaBloks.
- Cozy Coupe. I don’t know what it is about this toy, but kids love it, and it promotes active and imaginative play.
- Tent. I love tents for kids. This stimulates
imagination and cooperative play for sure.
- Pull or push toy. If you don’t mind the noise, my kids love this classic popper.
- Wooden puzzles. I love all the nice Melissa and Doug or comparable stuff out there these days. Wooden puzzles last well and give children something solid to feel and explore… and, let’s be honest, chew
- Beach ball. When slightly deflated, this is the easiest ball for a young child to catch, and will do the least damage to the inside of your home. But balls in general are great toys.
- Rocking horse. We have a rocking
horse, and nearly every toddler that enters our home makes a b-line for it. Rocking horses have literally been around for centuries. Remember, the classics are classic for a reason.
- Play food. This is good for hours of fun, and you certainly don’t need a fancy
kitchen to go with it. We do a
lot of “picnics” in our living room and pretend the bookshelf is the oven, etc.
- Toy cars. Boys especially seem to love these. Chunky cars are always great.
- A baby doll. A great, classic toy for girls that promotes pretend play.