Playing is an essential part of growing up and exploring the world, and that's why it's essential for little ones to have plenty of safe, fun and exciting toys around as soon as they enter the world. You can discover a wide selection of playtime essentials for newborns, older infants and toddlers that will stimulate, entertain and encourage learning and creativity during those first few formative years. Best of all, each time you donate $1+ at checkout to feedingamerica.org, Redtailtoys.com donates the cost of 10 meals to help end hunger right here in the USA.
Toy tips for newborn to 6 month ages
While newborns may not be reaching for those rattles just yet, they do become more and more interested in their environments as they grow. During the first 6 months, they may learn to touch and grasp for toys, and it's important that moms, dads, siblings, grandparents and other loved ones interact with these tiny infants using toys and other attention-grabbing objects to help with development. Larger toys can also assist babies in eventually developing fine motor skills. As a bonus, showing baby a toy can help keep him or her entertained or quiet a crying child. Tips for choosing toys at this age include:
Choose toys with faces. Babies love to look at faces, so dolls and stuffed animals make an excellent choice for first toys. Just make sure the face is embroidered and doesn't have small pieces that can be pulled off and swallowed.
Opt for softer toys. Babies at this age can't fully control their movements and may hit themselves in the head with a toy, so the softer it is, the better.
Play mats with mobiles are another great choice. While babies this young may not have the ability to hold onto toys, they do enjoy watching mobiles that move or play music.
Toy tips for ages 6 months to 12 months
Babies between 6 and 12 months are at a super-fun age. This is when they become mobile and attempt to crawl or walk. This is also when they really learn how to play with toys. The second half of the first year is the perfect time to:
Consider stacking and sorting toys. They help with hand-eye coordination, as well as the development of motor skills. They're also fun to bang together.
Introduce push toys at this age if the baby is pulling up or attempting to walk.
Select toys that move, such as age-appropriate cars and other vehicles. They're perfect for both crawlers and walkers to push and chase to help them build physical strength.