Age-by-age Guide to Toys (0-3 Years)
What are the best age-appropriate and safe toys to get your favourite grandchildren? Here’s the first of our two-part guide on suitable playthings for just-borns and those up to three years old.

Finding the best age-appropriate and safe gift can be tricky.

You’re a doting grandparent, and you want to get every new shiny toy for your grandchildren. But finding the best age-appropriate and safe gift can be tricky. Here are our suggestions for developmental and educational toys that match their age, development stages and abilities. These go a long way in stimulating a baby and child’s brain and keeping them entertained.

A range of toys ideal for one- to two-year-olds.

0-12 MONTHS Don’t you just love the way babies gaze at us? They follow you with their eyes and are attracted to faces, bright colours and peculiar shapes. As babies develop physically at this age, they flail actively, respond to sounds and do so much more! Between the ages of seven and 12 months, get ready for them to become more active movers! They roll over, scoot, bounce, and even attempt to pull themselves up and stand. They’re also at a stage when they begin to recognise their names and some words.

Colourful rattles that can be held or make noise are ideal for newborn babies.

A baby’s intellectual development helps him identify body parts, find hidden objects and place things in and out of containers – a fun stage for grandparents! The list of toys for this age group is endless, but we’ve narrowed it down to stuff they can hold, suck on safely, shake or make noise with: - Brightly coloured, multipatterned crib mobiles. - Rattles. - Unbreakable mirrors. - Floor gyms. - Activity boards. - Soft, washable and colourful stuffed animals/smiling dolls. - Small stuffed fabric balls.

Developmental and educational toys go a long way in stimulating a new baby.

1-2 YEARS As your grandchild continues to grow, you’ll notice new and exciting abilities that develop because they’re typically on the go and discovering the world at this stage. They’re “talking” and making recognisable sounds.

A toy fire engine helps growing children develop their motor skills.

They love you talking, looking at picture books together and pointing to objects they know. Their level of communication moves a notch higher, too – by babbling, trying to copy or say first words, and saying “no” with a shake of the head. Good toys for one- to two-year-olds include: - Stacking rings. - Nesting cups/boxes. - Push-/pull-toys with sounds or pop-up/moving pieces. - Hammering sets to hammer pegs or balls through holes. - Simple musical instruments (tambourines, drums). - Shape sorters. - Large play vehicles (school bus, fire engine). - Puzzles (four/five-piece sets). - Rubber ducks/toy boats for bathtime.

2-3 YEARS At two to three years, there’s so much going on in toddlers’ development. They would have established new thinking skills at this age, can utter simple sentences, pretend play, and much more.

Riding on a tricycle helps toddlers develop coordination and balance.

Toddlers at these ages enjoy playing with others, playing dress-up, having tea parties, finger or brush painting and rough-and-tumble play (rolling around, wrestling). Other fun things to do with your grandchildren: telling stories, singing and reading. The toys to consider:

A little tea set is a classic toy.

- Dolls/stuffed animals. - Props for make-believe play (toy telephone, kitchen/tea-party sets). - Ride-on toys and tricycles. - Musical instruments (with flashing lights/keys that play a tune). - Large transport toys with buttons for honk/siren. - Puzzles. - Construction toys that snap together.