10 must have toys for 2-3 year old

Here are my top 10 list of toys for 2 year old toddlers.

I find this age group to be the most fun to interact with, as they are no more babies and have suddenly acquired this wild, inquisitive nature and are so much more interested in exploring things around them. I really had fun this year experimenting with numerous toys and understanding what helps my 2 year old develop a lot of her skills. So narrowing down my list to only 10, here are the top toys I recommend for toddlers.

1.Magnetic tiles:

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If you follow me on Instagram, you would know how much Raisha enjoys this toy. This is the best open ended toy I could recommend for toddlers and even for older kids. Magnetic tiles help kids develop math, science, and fine motor skills while having fun. Kids can design flat, 2-D patterns or build in 3-D structures. There are infinite possibilities of creations and magnetic tiles just helps these young creators get wild in their imagination and create whatever they want along with giving stability to their structures with the super strong magnets. Due to the magnets, there is less chance of the kids losing  interest or getting bored like  with other building blocks. This is something which gets picked up every single day in our home. I would suggest to get at least a 100 piece set. The brands I suggest are Magnatiles, PlayMags and Magformers

(Note: Magformers have a different shape and are smaller in size when compared to the other two brands)

 

2. Play Doh:

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Play Doh is great for strengthening muscle tone in little hands – squishing, squashing, rolling, flattening play doh all develop children’s muscles and encourage prewriting and other skills such as cutting with a scissors, using a tweezers, holding a pencil etc.

Benefits of Play Doh

  • Enhances fine motor skill.
  • Improves pre-writing skills.
  • Creativity and imagination.
  • Calming effect.
  • Develops hand – eye coordination.
  • Social skills.
  • Increases curiosity and knowledge.

Play doh again is a  great open ended toy which can be used in numerous ways, as play food, animals, for color recognition, shape recognition and so on, possibilities are endless. Whenever my toddler gets cranky, a handful of playdoh has always been successful in calming her and get her back to her cheerful mood. You can make home made play doh too, more safer option if your toddler still puts things in mouth.

3. Puzzles :

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Two year olds are now ready to be working with jig saw puzzles. After introducing them the two piece puzzles around 24 months, you can gradually increase the number of pieces and by the end of the year, they should be able to  comfortably solve 15 to 20 piece puzzles. There are phases when my two year old does 3 to 4 set of puzzles back to back and times when she doesn’t touch puzzles at all. Go by their interest, you can find jig saw puzzles on literally every theme you can think of, buy the ones your little one is interested in for example: space theme, animal theme, dinosaur theme, princess theme, mickey theme etc. Puzzles can keep them engaged for a long time and helps increase their attention span, fine motor skills, problem solving skills and confidence.

4. Vehicle Set:

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If vehicles interest them, get them a full-fledged set of cars and tracks or train sets. We love our train set from Brio, we started with a basic set and are building more around it. Sets like these help a lot with understanding practical life concepts for example: how a train works, how train stations work, what do cars/ tracks go on, how other vehicles behave when trains pass, how to move around during different traffic signals etc. These sets can be such a fun way of learning through play. We are planning to gift her a lot of different Brio extensions for her Brio set this Christmas. Find a set which suits your kids interest.

5.Kitchen Set:

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A toddler magnet, if you have a full-fledged kitchen setup in your house, it is sure to attract every child who visits your home. Children love playing different roles and scenarios in imaginative play. Play kitchens are a particularly popular resource for pretend play, as it gives children the opportunity to imitate situations that they are familiar with.

This is another toy after magnetic tiles which is played with every day in our house. Irrespective of the gender, I recommend getting your child a kitchen set with basic accessories. They will use anything around as play food and have a well engaged time of play with their little kitchen. We also have various wooden vegetable, fruits,play food sets but my toddler mostly uses play doh, bottle caps or pom poms as her play food.

6. Wooden Blocks:

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Wooden blocks are a tool that are used for development of goal progression in treatment activities and in assessment of fine motor developmental level.  They are used in visual perceptual skills and are the perfect open-ended play item. Wooden blocks are highly recommended open ended toy for toddlers. Give them some pieces of stackable wooden blocks of different shapes and sizes and be ready to be amazed seeing them use their imagination and work around the blocks. These can be used for various activities like shape recognition, color recognition, sorting also  used  as play food.

7.  Animal Figurines:

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Figurines are one of the top kid’s choices as they boost child’s development, creativity, imagination and much more.

Research shows: Animal figurines set scored highest among other selected toys in creativity and imagination, social interaction and verbalization. It was the highest-scoring toy for both preschool girls and boys, and also scored highly among children from different ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Source: TIMPANI Toy Study

I would rate figurines as an essential toy for early learning, they can be used to learn about characteristics, enact stories. The brand I recommend is Schleich, as their figurines have the most realistic feel and they have been able to capture the minutest of details on the animals. These figurines have helped my toddler learn a lot about the animals for ex: size of their tails, how the animals feed, different paw patterns etc.

8. Coloring/Tracing:

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You can introduce coloring books and tracing now along with letting them free hand paint or scribble on plain sheet of paper

Some benefits of coloring worksheets for kids:

  • Improve Handwriting:Children need hand strength and dexterity to manipulate a pencil on a paper.
  • Hand And Eye Coordination
  • Relaxation And Patience
  • Focus
  • Knowledge
  • Confidence
  • Motor Skill
  • Stimulates Creativity

They don’t necessarily have to colour within the lines, but do encourage them and colour along with them. You can also use coloring as an activity during travels or restaurant visits. This is our favourite activity to do in restaurants.

9. Doll with accessories:

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Along with cuddling the dolls now they would be interested in bathing them, cleaning them, feeding them and so accessories like a stroller, bottle, bath tub, potty seat can be a great addition to your little ones play room. Helps them learn practical life skills and be more independent in their daily chores. Also this can lead to some time of independent play.

10. Scooter/ tri cycle:

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They are heavy now to be carried in a carrier and are too bored to sit in a stroller, so a tricycle, balance bike or a scooter is a good option while  going out on a stroll with toddlers. Mine uses her tricycle and scooter inside the house and we haven’t taken them out of the home yet but I would recommend giving toddlers these ride ons for outings.

Hope this helps get an idea what toys to get your toddler or what to gift a two year old this holiday season 🙂 Do leave your comments if you found this useful.

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