Watching your babies turn into toddlers is a rewarding and exciting experience as a parent. Your baby is learning more about themselves and the world around them every single day. There are so many fun perks to watching little ones grow; playing with new toys and games is just one of them!
As your little one gets older, it’s important to play games and do create activities that stimulate both their cognitive functions and their imagination. From stacking toys to toddler puzzles to lacing beads, Hazel & Fawn has an abundance of toddler-approved toys and games!
Why are Games Important for Children?
Games provide children with opportunities to explore, experiment, and develop new skills in a fun and engaging way. Toddlers are naturally curious learners who enjoy exploring their surroundings, and it’s up to parents to help guide them in the right direction and encourage these learning behaviors.
Games and puzzle toys help little ones develop their cognitive, physical, and social abilities. Additionally, they encourage emotional intelligence because of the interactions present in gameplay. Games encourage children to think critically, solve problems, and develop their creativity and imagination.
As babies turn into toddlers, it can be tricky to find the best ways to encourage socialization and relationship-building. Toddlers naturally want to play by themselves, though they will play alongside other children. Introducing your toddler to collaborative games helps them learn to communicate, collaborate, and negotiate with others. Not only will they have fun and make friends, but they will develop essential life skills.
What Types of Games Can I Play with My Children?
There’s no limit to the types of games you can play with your kids, but our three favorite types are:
- Games with stacking toys
- Active games
- Toddler puzzles
Stacking Cups, Rings, and Blocks
We love different types of stacking toys because they offer so many opportunities and can entertain your toddler for hours! Stacking toys are great for developing fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and spatial awareness. Stacking cups help little ones understand size relationships; certain sizes of stacking cups will only fit in other certain sizes, helping them to understand shapes and sizes. We love these Mushie Stacking Cups for starting your collection!
Stacking ring toys are another classic and can be wonderful, engaging toys for little ones. Most stacking ring toys come with a base and various colors or textures of rings, allowing toddlers to come up with their own designs and patterns. Stacking ring toys help with patience and persistence as they work to stack the rings how they want to. The fresh colors and easy-to-grab shapes of stacking ring toys are great attributes that make them perfect for little hands.
Stacking blocks are our other favorite category of stacking toys and can provide a lot of entertainment aside from using them in their traditional way. Stacking blocks can be used to build towers, bridges, and other structures. Stacking blocks also provide open-ended play, engaging babies and toddlers to use them however they’d like. We particularly love wooden stacking toys here for their longevity and quality, like this classic set of wooden stacking blocks.
Staying Active with Games
Toddler parents will all agree – these little ones are active, busy creatures! Finding games that promote physical activity is a great way to engage their minds and get some of their wiggles out. We love classics like Duck, Duck, Goose and a good old-fashioned game of tag. If you’re looking for an engaging game outside, try hiding individual pieces of a wooden stacking toy and making a treasure hunt for your little one!
How Do Toddler Puzzles Help Shape Young Minds?
Toddler puzzles have been around for generations and provide classic, timeless entertainment opportunities for kids. We love wooden puzzles in particular because they can stand up to the rough and tumble play of a toddler. Wooden puzzles are available in different shapes, sizes, and designs, making them suitable for kids of all ages. Wooden puzzles help with problem-solving skills and hand-eye coordination.
When selecting a wooden puzzle for your toddler, it’s important to consider what’s age appropriate. Toddlers may find wooden tray puzzles with larger pieces easier to handle, while older children can tackle more complex wooden puzzles. Some wooden tray puzzles even have knobs that make grasping the pieces easier for little hands.
Our Favorite Toddler Puzzles
While any sort of toddler puzzle is beneficial for little ones, three of our favorites include:
Wooden Tray Puzzles with Animals
We love a good wooden tray puzzle, and this one featuring different types of whales provides even more stimulating entertainment! In addition to solving the wooden puzzle, kids can use the pieces of this wooden tray puzzle to learn about wildlife and understand some basic science principles. This wooden tray puzzle is a win-win for parents!
Floor Puzzles for Toddlers
A great way to engage little ones’ minds and bodies at the same time is with a floor puzzle. Floor puzzles like the ocean one linked above allow kids to move around the room, trying to fit their pieces together. The large pieces of floor puzzles make them easy to grab, and the large-scale finished product will make any kid proud!
Multiple Uses of Lacing Beads for Toddlers
They’re not a traditional toddler puzzle, but lacing beads are a wonderful opportunity for kids to learn about shapes, sizes, patterns, and more. Lacing beads come with different shapes and a large string to lace through the shapes. Lacing beads are an engaging type of toddler puzzle because they require hand-eye coordination and critical thinking. These lacing beads are also great for color and shape recognition!