Finding developmentally appropriate gifts for a one year old is a tough task; especially with so many options available and each of the toy claiming to teach the kid everything. How do you decide which toy will actually help the kid? Here are a few basic things to keep in mind when looking for a great gift for baby’s first birthday:
Buy toys that are safe for them
This is the first and most important thing. Many twelve-month-olds still love to put stuff in their mouth. Beware of birthday gifts that contain small parts that could be choking hazards.
Buy toys that encourage hand eye coordination
Children begin to understand that objects come in different colors, shapes, and sizes right around their first birthday. Buy toys like shape sorters, puzzles, blocks for stacking or building etc.
Nesting or stacking toys
These toys help create an understanding of size differences, midline play, bilateral coordination, grasping, concentration etc. But colorful toys without any sharp edges.
Books make the best gift for any age. Look for engaging books that encourage rhythm, rhyming, repetition, matching, touching and feeling, and/or identification of objects (animals, vehicles, body parts, shapes, colors, numbers, etc.).
Think about when you want the kid to use the gift
Think about whether you want to buy a gift that the birthday kiddo can play with as soon as they open it or if you want them to be able to get some use out of it a few months down the road.
Finally, remember that children develop at their own pace and they each have their own unique preferences and strengths. One kiddo may prefer shape sorters and puzzles while the other prefers balls and ride-on toys. The toys they might not like at one point can become their favorite toys at another time. Go ahead and buy a colorful, safe, and thoughtful gift.