I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Playskool. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for my participation.
I’ve heard it said that the first five years of a child’s life can be the most important – their minds are so open to learning new concepts. I strongly believe in the importance of early learning – which can really start as soon as the baby is born!
With the birth of our sweet Oliver, it’s been fun to watch Jack become a big brother. So far, he’s loved it, and he has taken on the responsibility very well. He loves to share all his toys and books with him – even though Oliver can’t really play yet. It has gotten me thinking about what are the best toys for infants and when to introduce them.
I thought I would share a few tips for buying a toy for a baby in case you are wondering what is appropriate as well!
Toys that grow with your child
Toys can be expensive! I think it’s important to buy toys (some of them, at least) that can adapt with age. This extends the life of the toy, which means needing to buy less toys later!
We really like this Fold ‘N Go Elephant. Since Oliver is still less than two weeks old, it’s been the perfect toy to use for him for tummy time! As he gets older, I’m sure he’ll love playing with the simple rattle, the mirror, and the other little toys and textures the toy has.
Big brother Jack also loves playing with it as well – which makes it doubly awesome. If we can get a toy that entertains both kids, I consider it a win.
Early childhood learning is so important! I believe you can encourage learning in your child as soon as they are born. With an infant, it can be as simple as talking to them and telling them about your day-to-day activities.
I think toys that help teach colors and shapes are great for children of all ages, including babies. This shape sorter is a simple toy that helps with recognition of colors and shapes.
Less is More
While toys that have lots of sounds are popular and definitely have their place, I think it’s much better to have a few toys that your child loves, rather than 100 toys that they sometimes play with. Something I’ve heard a lot of parents do with success is a toy rotation – basically, they only have a few toys out a time, but there are other toys stored somewhere else. Once the child starts to get bored of the toys they have, you can just swap them out with the ones you have stored!
Encourage Exploration and Imagination
I think that encouraging your child to use their imagination is super important. I have loved seeing Jack’s imaginary play grow over the past six months or so. It’s so fun to see his little mind at work and see what it comes up with. I think that you can encourage imaginary play from a young age, and it has many benefits.
Help Learn Life Skills
I know, infants don’t need to learn too many life skills beyond eating, sleeping, and going to the bathroom! However, if you can help them start to learn the bare minimum of life skills early on, awesome! We don’t have a lot of dolls around our house, but this is a fun one that helps your child learn how to zip, button, and dress themselves!
Easy to Use and Cleanup
The longer I’ve been a mom, the more I realize how much I like toys that don’t have a lot of parts and pieces or cleanup involved. There’s just not enough time in the day for reading complex instructions or cleaning up messes. That’s why we love the Hasbro Playskool On-the-Go products. They all meet the criteria I mentioned above, and they are SO easy to take with you and clean-up. I highly recommend looking into this line next time you are looking for a toy for your child! They have been designed specifically from consumer feedback, feature bright colors, and are easy to pack up for fun on the go and at home!
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