Choosing Appropriate Toys and Games for Your Toddler

Find tips on choosing great toys for your toddler. The right toys make it easier to limit television time.

Your child will, of course, not spend all of his time watching television and reading books. If you decide to limit your child's TV time, you will need to engage him with other toys and activities. Here are some ideas:

Childproofing

Whenever your toddler rides a tricycle or any other vehicle that tips easily, make sure that he wears a safety helmet.

  • Many of the toys, games, and fun activities that your child enjoyed as a one-year-old, he will continue to love as a two-year-old. These include blocks, stacking cups, shape boxes, pull toys, and sand toys.
  • Hands-on toys give your child a chance to practice and show off his rapidly improving hand-eye coordination. Any toy that requires your child to turn his wrist to fit pieces together (jigsaw puzzles, LEGOS, Lincoln Logs, and so on) will keep him busy for many hours. So will any toys that involve building or constructing (including interlocking blocks and sand toys).
  • Your child also will love toys and games that involve sorting or matching skills. Anything that helps to order his world is always welcome at this age.
  • Wheeled ride-on toys, which you may have introduced in your child's second year, will become even more popular in his third. Toward the end of the year, you might even want to spring for your toddler's first tricycle and/or wagon.
  • You also can keep your child physically active with lots of games that involve jumping, climbing, or hopping. Give your toddler every opportunity to jump, roll, run, and climb. Games like ring-around-a-rosy, Simon Says, follow the leader, or musical chairs—or just finding a hill and rolling down it—will give your toddler practice at making his body move the way he wants it to.
  • In addition, games and play that involve creative movement—for instance, pretending to be an animal—will help him discover new ways to make his body move.
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