Toys

TOY OF THE MONTH: Christmas List for Babies and Toddlers

Christmas is around the corner, so instead of writing about one of our favorite toys this month I decided to create a little inspirational list! Some of these toys Vito already have it, others he plays at his school and few are part of our future wish list. Sometimes is so hard to thing about gifts for our little ones that I believe everyone would enjoy a little help.

And obviously, all our ‘toys of the month’ already published can be added to this list!

 

FOR BABIES

 o ball     sassy pop car    mobile to go travel    sorting blocks  basics puzzle

OBall Rattle – easy for babies to grasp with 4 rattles that make great sound when baby shakes it.

Sassy Pop n’Push Car – helps develop motor skills and crawling; introduces the idea of cause and effect.

Infant Stim Mobile – great for car seats and strollers; early visual and multi-sensory development.

Shape Sorting Cube – develops motor skills and introduces shapes and colors. And they can use the blocks for stacking and making towers.

Basics Activity Puzzle – develop motor skills, eye-hand coordination and great for sensory development.

 

FOR TODDLERS

peg board set

kinetic sand        bike        magnatiles     sumblox

Peg Board Set – fine motor toy for counting and color sorting.

Kinetic Sand – estimates creativity and great sensory material.

Balance Bike – great first bike and makes the transition to a pedal bike very easy.

Magna Tiles – engages mathematical and scientific thought, deductive reasoning, and requires use of spatial awareness.

Sumblox –  develops strong understanding of mathematical concepts, like addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and even, fractions, all through discovery and hands-on play!

 

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PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon links are affiliate links, which means that if you click on the product links, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: CRAYOLA MODEL MAGIC

model magic

CRAYOLA MODEL MAGIC

We were introduced to this ‘play dough’ by Vito’s best friend. The first time that Vito actually played with it he wasn’t too interested, but actually touched it – which never happened before with any kind of play dough, clay, or similar – so I decided to have a go and purchase it. And now, it has became of his favorite activities. Thanks Michael : )

Vito has a thing against messiness and different textures, and this modeling material is not messy at all – I can assume mums love it too – it’s actually very clean, doesn’t smell and works amazingly well. If kept in an air tight bag can last for ages, but if you want to keep the creation just let it dry for few days. And obviously, it’s non toxic. The only minor thing is that once the colors is mixed together, it’s impossible to separate them again.

I love manipulating it too, so we expend quite sometime playing with it together. I am not very good at it, so hopefully auntie Gabi will visit soon and make some of her stunning creations.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon links are affiliate links, which means that if you click on the product links, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: SASSY NEWBORN TOYS

I was just looking at past toy’s posts and realized the latest ones are mostly suggestions for toddlers; obviously as Vito continues to grow we end up finding interesting toys for his age group. So, I decided to ‘start’ it over again and suggest toys for babies. I will start from newborn, and move a stage up every new toy suggestion until we reach Vito’s age group once again. I think the new moms will appreciate some posts aimed at them, right?

sassy toys newborn

SASSY NEWBORN GIFT SET

Vito had two out of these toys, but I really think all of them are perfect for newborn. They have the black and white patterns which are great for those first few months and basic colors too to assist the development of sight – Look!Look! book is a great for them too – it also helps developing hearing, with the rattles and touch with the different textures and fabrics.

The great thing about them is that it will last for sometime not only for the newborn phase; Vito used his ‘Beginning Bites’ for so long I had to thrown them away when he was around 1 years old. He loved the phone too, which helped him with his one hand grabbing skills and also was great to develop interaction and the very beginning of pretend play.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon links are affiliate links, which means that if you click on the product links, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: Once Upon A Potty – Book

once upon a potty

ONCE UPON A POTTY by Alona Frankel

As we’ve being talking a lot about potty training this past month I decided to share this ‘toy’. This book, in my opinion, is amazing. And most definitely a must have to assist with the training.

We got it for Vito together with his potty, and it immediately got his attention. They have two version, one for girls and one for boys, which is great so the children can really see themselves in it. It explains step by step about the process in a very gentle and easy to understand manner. It helps us, grown up, to use the right words and use it as a way to reinforce how and why we are doing it. It also talks about accidents as something normal and part of the process, so even though it happens we are still succeeding in it.

For almost the first two months, every time Vito were at the potty we were reading “Once Upon a Potty’; I also made sure we only read the ‘potty book’ once we were at the potty, so he actually looked forward to seat on the potty.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click or purchase it through the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

Photo source: http://flickrhivemind.net/Tags/child,potty/Interesting

TOY OF THE MONTH: SMARTNOGGIN NOGGIN STIK

 

SMARTNOGGIN NOGGIN STIK

SMARTNOGGIN NOGGIN STIK

Vito never had this toy as a baby, but a friend of mine swears by it, so I am sharing it here. After all, it’s this exchange of information between moms that makes our lives so much easier.

In her words, it’s a 5 in 1 toy: easy grip with a textured handle, a black and white side for the early days – great for newborn’s eyes development, and a top part that changes color to stimulate eyes and also teaches action/reaction – it changes color when baby shakes it, a mirror at the bottom and of course the rattle noise that all baby loves.

A bit on the expensive side for a baby toy, but my friend’s baby is now 7 months old and still plays with it and loves it so definitely worth awhile.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click or purchase it through the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: Buckle Toy

http://www.playnbeyond.com/2015/06/toy-of-the-month-smartnoggin-noggin-stik/

BUCKLE TOY

I was having coffee with a friend and one of her friends, and all our toddlers… when one of her children started to play with this toy. She immediately said, best toy ever! And great for car and plane travel! That actually got my attention, as we were preparing for another trip to Brazil. I got it and didn’t give it to him until we were on the plane. I thought a new and exciting toy would grab his attention for longer, and we might needed on a just the two of us 9 hours plane trip.

We are currently in Brazil, and I did exactly that with this toy. We always travel during the night, so Vito can sleep most of the time during the flight. He woke up we still had two hours left, so I revealed the Buckle Turtle! And obviously he absolutely loved it, and he played with it for almost half hour! I am not exaggerating… What is not to like anyway? For some time now, Vito has been fascinated by buckles, and this toy is ALL about them.

They have six different designs, we choose the turtle as Vito adores them. I have to say, a bit on the expensive side for what actually is, but worth for time spent playing with it in full concentration. And of course, develops fine motor and cognitive skills!

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you purchase it through the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: Train Set

lego duplo train set

TRAIN SET

Vito has been into trains for awhile now, so for his Christmas gift we decided to get him a train set. After some research, we went for the Lego Train Set above. My sister and I owned a Lego train set as kids, and my parents kept the tracks and some of the wagons. Vito was already playing with it, so we decided to add on to it with this kit, with the advantage that he was having a motorized train too.

At the beginning, he didn’t want to play with the motorized train, but as we kept building and developing more complicated tracks; Vito warmed up to the ‘moving’ train. We build tunnels and waiting areas, and villages around the tracks too. Sometimes he wants to watch the motorized train make his way around the tracks and sometimes he prefers moving the train himself, either way its one of his favorite activities.

All train sets are great, and there are many possibilities out there, they don’t have to be motorized or super complicated to get our little ones to love them. In my opinion, all girls and boys should have one as they are great for their growth and development; by developing their problem solving skills – I was quite surprised when not long ago Vito started building the tracks without any help,and was trying to figure out how to link one end to the other – it also develops their creativity and imagination as well as fine motor skills and dexterity.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click on the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: BROOM SET

broom set

BROOM SET

 About two weeks ago I wrote about pretend play and mentioned ways to stimulate it with toddlers; and one of the suggestions were acquire a broom set as well as a tea set. The tea set is in our wish list, but Vito had this broom set since he was 11 months old and absolutely loves it.

It was an early birthday present from his grand mother, and he instantly fell in love with it. It includes a broom, a brush and a dust pan and at the beginning he just used it for their very purpose, helping me out in the house – well, not really! But lately he has been using it as other things too, most of the time as a horse – talking about pretend play, right?

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click on the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! BOOK

don't let the pigeon drive the bus

DON’T LET THE PIGEON DRIVE THE BUS! BOOK BY MO WILLEMS

I’ve know this book way before Vito was born. A while back, I was looking at a bookshop for a great toddler book for my friend’s son when I spotted this one. I read it, and felt it special; so I bought it for my little friend. Fast forward to sometime before Vito turned one, and I was back to a bookshop looking for new books for him when I spotted this one again. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! is actually not great, but amazing! It received the Caldecott Honor, and it has been in many other must have lists including the American Library Association Notable Book, and I totally understand why.

In the beginning Vito was very interested in book and enjoyed the story, grabbing his attention until the end. He did love the book, but it seemed that this one was not different from any other of his favorites. After awhile, as his speech developed he started to interact with the book and answering ‘No’ every time the Pigeon asked him to drive the bus – in a nut shelf it’s a story of a pigeon who wants to drive a bus, but the bus driver asks the reader not to let him, and the pigeon gets frustrated throwing a tantrum and using arguments just like a toddler.

Apart from Vito’s interaction which is special, the books gives him an opportunity to decide the fate of the pigeon, to be in an empowering position and learn that is important to say NO just like we do, his parents. Vito also gets to see the Pigeon presenting his non sense arguments, just like he will do very soon! And at the end, a happy end with the Pigeon moving on to a something bigger – a truck!

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click on the product link, I’ll receive a small fee. 

TOY OF THE MONTH: WOODEN CHUNKY PUZZLE

chunky puzzle

MELISSA & DOUG FARM WOODEN CHUNKY PUZZLE

Vito got these for christmas from his auntie and loved it straightway. They are wonderful to promote matching skills and also for pretend play as they stand on their own too. The other day, Vito turned the board around and start placing them standing on top of it.

The manufacturer says age 2 and above but Vito is almost 17 months old and plays with it perfectly already.

They do have a selection of different themes, from construction and vehicles to pets and safari, so I am sure you will find one that will be of our toddler’s interest.

(click on top of the picture to be redirected to Amazon)

PS: This Blog has not received any payment to publicize this product… It’s really  my own tip! The Amazon link is an affiliate link, which means that if you click on the product link, I’ll receive a small fee.