Holiday Gifts for Young Children
This time of year, many families ask our therapists for gift suggestions. It's easy to find toys that are age appropriate for children ranging from a few months old to three years old, but can be more difficult to find more "educational" toys. So we brainstormed a list of gifts, and here's what we came up with:
- Bus or house with doors/windows that open and shut, for people to go in, out, in front, up top, etc.
- Ball or car track for counting, ready set go, fast/slow, start/finish, top/bottom. This is also great for requesting and taking turns.
- Toy farms are always great as well with animal noises, shhh sleeping, wake up, etc.
- Indoor tents or tunnels they can get in/out, open/close, and pretend a whole bunch of things. IKEA has some really cool tents and tunnels.
- Play food and plate sets are also great for a variety of pretend play and turn-taking and requesting.
- Dress up sets encourage your child to use his or her imagination.
- Interactive books with flaps or textures can get children really interested in the book.
- Puzzles work on hand-eye coordination and problem solving skills. If possible, get your child a puzzle that would be fairly easy and a more challenging one.
- Blocks are also good for hand-eye coordination and problem solving/planning.
- Playdough is great for strengthening hands and fingers, working on cutting in a safe environment (try to find a play set with play dough scissors), and can be great for kids who might need to work on touching and playing with different textures.
- Lacing activities with beads and strings can be tough for the younger ones, but with some help, lacing activities are great with older children. Besides the hand-eye coordination required, you can count and talk about colors, too.
The best part is, these gifts don't have to break the bank! If you are all out of ideas, check out out your local thrift store. We always find some unexpected, inexpensive goodies in there!