CHOOSING THE RIGHT toys for 6 – 18 month old
From 6 months, the game occupies an essential place in the psychomotor development of the baby. His desire for exploration is growing, and his abilities are evolving from day to day: attention, concentration, reflection, etc. Games of skill in musical paintings, it’s the feast of the senses! And from the floor to the bathtub, the game has no boundaries. At each stage of awakening, its playful accessory: a practical guide to help you choose.
SMALL PLAYER WILL BECOME BIG
Do not forget that your child is growing … at his own pace. With very original games, he will have fun while honing his faculties. From 6 months, you can introduce simple elements in its environment.
CUBES, KEYS, AND BALLOONS
These straightforward elements are easy to manipulate and move. Their material is soft (e.g., velvet cube) and attractive. They allow your child to vary his play activities. The keychain (velvet/plastic) for baby is a good transition toy (can be used as a blanket as well).
A good introduction to learning movement, this toy is in the form of characters (often animals) screwed on a rocking base. Your baby is stimulated by the pendulum movement that he prints to the toy. Some cultures are equipped with visual / sound functions: a plus to attract his attention.
PYRAMID OF THE RINGS
The Very standard game, it is both the first game to “stacks” and the first game of imitation. You show him in a straightforward way the objective: to stack the rings on a stake by decreasing diameter. A fun training to capture his attention.
STUFFED TOYS AND BOOKS: GAMES FOR ALL AGES
Baby can not grow up having fun without his two “brothers” of play: the rich and illustrated book. These evolutionary toys contribute to the development of his imagination.
STUFFED TOYS: FROM THE BLANKET TO THE PLAY PARTNER
Your baby has a unique emotional relationship with her first teddy bear. The border is not very clear between his famous ” cuddly toy ” and some soft toy. The same object can accompany very long the growth of your child. If this is not the case, you can vary the pleasures as it grows.
From 6 months, baby can catch or grab objects of small volumes. It’s time to find stuffed animals with more rounded shapes. The only criterion: during teething, your baby regularly wears stuffed animals in their mouths. Check that it is harmless, washable and compatible with its age.
FROM THE CLOTH BOOK TO THE ILLUSTRATED BOOK
From 0 to 3 years, the attention of your baby is refined: it is time to introduce the books to its activities. But there are “levels” to respect to captivate his attention:
- The cloth book: for the little ones. It mixes tactile and visual sensations. Your baby learns to coordinate his movements (turn the pages) while having fun;
- The book in relief: intermediate book (from 1 year) which has above all a “tactile” interest. It is also an excellent visual aid to facilitate baby’s first words;
- the illustrated book: first narrative support, it allows to tell stories to the baby (from 16 months) and stimulates his imagination and attention.
FROM 6 MONTHS, THE EXPLORATION GAMES
THE WAKING MAT
The playing path of your baby begins most often with a mat of awakening. At six months, the babily is curious: he can grab many objects, to agitate them. But everything is apparently on all fours, hence the usefulness of the mat awakening: a concentrate of sound games, visual and tactile.
- Prefer carpets made of an arch (suspended objects): your baby strengthens his sitting position.
- The colors of the rug must be attractive.
- Check that all visual elements are present: noise or music, unbreakable mirror, various shapes (ex: stuffed animals, balls).
- The noises must be easily activated by your child (he learns the relationship between touch and sound)
- The material must be pleasant to the touch (velvet).
- Make sure the mat is washable on the surface.
THE ACTIVITY TABLE
It comes in the form of a rich character with many features: buttons, strings, ball, vibrating parts or sound. This is the perfected version of the blanket. The plus: its interactivity and mobility.
- As for the play mat, check that the board is multisensory.
- It must hang easily to be within reach of your baby.
- Your child should be able to carry it comfortably.
- The parts of the board must be securely fastened.
A LITTLE MUSIC IN BABY GAMES
PAINTINGS AND MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
These educational accessories introduce baby (from 6 months old) to unusual and amusing melodies, rhythms and sound effects. The common denominator of these toys: simplicity, pleasure, and interactivity.
- Plastic music boards mix keys, buttons, sliders and moving balls. Each part activates a sound/noise or a fun melody. Baby works several skills including logic, motor skills and language (listening).
- The musical instruments for baby are an excellent alternative: drum, guitar, maracas.
We recommend reading the article: best toys for 6 month old: how to choose?
FROM ONE YEAR OLD: PLAY AND AUTONOMY
As you grow up, your baby becomes touched by everything. From the beginning, his autonomy increases, as does his capacity for concentration and reflection. Playful accessories will allow him to reinforce these positions.
PUSHERS, PORTERS, AND TROTTERS: THE MARCH TOWARDS AUTONOMY
Beyond one year, motor skills are at the center of your child’s play activities. To help him, three types of games-accessories.
- The trotter: it allows baby to roam without fear. This device is used transiently before your child can walk a more secure step. Adjustable in height, it is equipped with some games of awakenings (ex: musical tablets).
- Carriers and pushers: these small four-wheeled recreational vehicles are adapted to the size of the baby. Some are equipped with a height stabilizer so that your child can grab and move autonomously (notions of directions, alternating between standing and sitting).
GAMES OF SKILL AND REFLECTION
- Recessing games: puzzle-type relief and construction games. Your child becomes familiar with geometric shapes. He can make multiple combinations with cubes and spheres of greater or lesser size: he develops his creativity.
- Spinning top: decorated, musical or standard, the high fascinates your child. To understand how it works, the baby must produce an individual effort (sustained attention, reflection).
Writing activities (coloring) are rare before two years. You can, however, gradually introduce this type of material in its fun activities (pencils and coloring books).
FROM 0 TO 3 YEARS, THE JOYS OF BATHING
Water is a reassuring element for baby, and therefore, an ideal playground! Some indispensable accessories.
- Floating plastic toys: a pure duck, a fish, or any other plastic object is enough. If it makes noise, it’s even better! Opt for mechanical action toys (ex: web duck).
- Floating foam toys: the material is enjoyable to the touch. Your child can chew on it during the bath. Foam toys are light and very cheap.
- Bath mobiles: complete and very playful. These toys are assembled as a kit. Your baby can detach them and have fun with each part. The base of the equipment is usually attached to the bath (suction cup).
TIPS: SAFETY OF BABY GAMES
For a baby to play in the best conditions, here are some precautions:
- Check the presence of the CE (mandatory) and NF logos on the products. These are quality guarantees.
- The packaging sometimes mentions restrictions on the age: be vigilant.
- Battery Toys: Check that the battery compartment of the toy is locked. Do not soak these toys in the water.
- Make sure the materials are safe for your baby (“hypoallergenic” may help).
- Check the strength of the buttons and attachment points of the toys (your baby can swallow part of the object).
- Soft toys must be safe for the baby’s mouth: he must be able to chew them.
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