Though we wrapped gifts with pretty metallic paper and matching ribbon, our baby wasn’t old enough to really appreciate the holidays last year. This year we have a toddler, and though her favorite part of the holiday might be the ginger cookies and peppermint marshmallows, I’m really looking forward to surprising her with a few carefully chosen gifts. I’ve been brainstorming options for a while, and I wanted to share with you some items that have already been a big hit with our toddler as well as a few new items we have in mind. This is such a fun age to shop for, and I hope this list will inspire you as you think about what will delight your busy toddler!
9 Quality Toddler Gifts Your Kid Will Love
- Activity Cube
A Gift With Longevity
First we had an activity gym, then an activity table, and now we have an activity cube. My daughter began playing with this cube when she was one. I was so proud of her when she could correctly sort the shapes! My nephews that are almost 3 and 5 liked playing with this when they visited recently.
>This activity cube is a painted wooden cube with rounded edges that includes a shape sorter, a bead maze, a ball ramp with a mallet, a color matching maze, and a spinning wheel. It’s made by Hape, a manufacturer I trust. Minimal assembly required. (Not a big deal!)
Amazon’s lowest price ever on this was $90, so if you see the price drop to around there, it’s a good time to buy!
- New Pajamas
A Practical Gift
Pajamas are a practical gift, but they’re still fun! My favorite pajamas for toddlers are these two-piece organic cotton sets by Burt’s Bees Baby. They come in a wide range of styles, with several different Christmas designs this year. They’re GOTS certified, inexpensive, and f you really want to get into it, you can buy yourself a matching set.
- Wooden Alphabet Puzzle
An Educational Gift
This puzzle is a darling way to learn your letters while practicing fine motor skills. We play with it every day, and that’s a big reason my toddler knows her letters and sounds. I sing the alphabet song while pointing the letters, then dump them out. We identify them one by one, saying their names, their sounds, and a word or two that’s associated with each letter (ie: B is for Baby, C is for cat, and so on…).
A STEM Toy
STEM-relates toys are definitely trendy right now. My favorite STEM toy is a classic set of building blocks. MegaBloks are perfect for toddlers because they’re chunky and easy to grip. I like them for building, stacking, and color sorting. MegaBloks are a good open-ended toy if you’re looking for a gift that will be used in lots of different ways.
- Gazillion Bubbles
An Outside Toy
In the mommy & me classes we attend, this bubble machine is always a huge hit. It produces hundreds of bubbles at a time, and I think it gives you a big bang for your buck. I bought one for my nephew last Christmas, and it was loved by the entire family.
- Interactive Board Books
A Gift to Promote Early Literacy
You can never have too many books! My toddler loves interactive board books with different flaps, textures, and activities. Fair warning: sometimes she loves pulling off the tabs, so know now that some interactive books can really take a beating. Here are a few of my current favorites:
- A New Friend
A Gift To Foster Imaginary Play
Dolls and stuffed animals are great playmates as toddlers begin to show an interest in imaginary play. They also look pretty cute tucked into Christmas stockings! You can’t go wrong with one of the sweet friends from Jellycat, which come in a wide variety of styles and sizes.
- Something Personalized
A One-of-a-Kind Gift
There are so many ways to personalize ordinary items to make them extra special for your child! Whether you choose personalized décor for their room or simply customize a new coloring pad with their name spelled out in stickers, I love how personalization adds a special touch to gifts, even for little ones.
Last year I made a few different personalized board books through Pinhole Press, and I plan to make a few more this year!
- Art Supplies
A Gift To Nurture Creativity
Toddlers love exploring new colors, shapes, and textures through simple art projects. Maybe you’ve got a great homemade play dough recipe and can whip up a new batch. Or maybe the crayons in your child’s craft box could use an upgrade. Art supplies are often expensive and provide hours of entertainment.
I hope this list helps you find a gift that will truly delight your toddler! Did I miss something your toddler is getting a kick out of right now? I’d love to hear any additions you might have in the comments!
Wife and mother of twins. Founder of Pride & Joy Baby Planners and The Expecting Mamas Network.