Developmentally Appropriate Toys for children 0-12 months

PlayDrMom's favorite toys for children 0-12 months

What are some MUST-HAVES for a baby-to-be or for that little zero to twelve-month old in your life?  Definitely think of safe toys that will stimulate the babies senses … because that is how he/she learns about the world.  Here are some suggestions for developmentally appropriate toys for children 0-12 months..

  • Stacking Cups
  • Shape Sorting Blocks
  • an Activity table  Ones that have detachable legs are great because with the legs off smaller babies can use them during tummy time play or when they are old enough to sit.  Then you can add the legs back on when baby is able to stand assisted.
  • an Activity mat – Get one that is good for tummy time, as well as has overhead activity while laying on back.  Washable is also very nice!
  • Jumperoo activity station – My kids LOVED the independence the got in the Jumperoo activity station.  It was also great for large motor skill development.
  • A Mobile –  To hang above the crib and/or changing area.  My favorite are handmade ones … someday I’ll have to do a post about that!
  • A Mirror – It’s great to put a cheap full length mirror horizontally somewhere along the baby’s wall.  Babies LOVE looking at their reflections and it’s great play for brain development.
  • Balls –  Balls that are soft, easy to grab, and larger than a tennis ball are perfect.  I really like the Oball or a Skwish.
  • Small soft toys that can hang on carseat/stroller.  I love the Whozit or Lamaze Take Along Toys.  These are important to learn hand-eye coordination … baby will learn to reach for the object … and make it move (and learn all about cause and effect in the process!)
  • Board Books – Here’s a post on some of my favorites!
  • AND … MOST IMPORTANTLY … consistent parent(s)/caregiver(s).  A baby THRIVES off the visual, tactile, and audio stimulation that a parent gives.  Being your child’s playmate, from birth and on, can be one of the most important things you may ever do!!!


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Laura Hutchison

Laura Hutchison (aka PlayDrMom) is a chubby kid turned competitive figure skater tween turned high school pom pon girl turned MSU Spartan turned grad student turned Mrs. HutcH turned Dr. turned Mom. She adores living in the Mitten, is addicted to Diet Coke, and firmly believes that ice cream is a main food group.

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