As the holidays approach, it is time to start thinking about developmentally appropriate toys for toddlers.  Below is a listing of developmental skills of early toddlers (ages 1-2) and some suggested toys that can aid in expanding these skills.

Toddlers are totally self-centered at this age.
They generally play alone, even when surrounded by people.
Toddlers do not share.
Toddlers are beginning to learn body language and can sometimes anticipate your moods by your expression.
Toddlers like to be helpers.
Toddlers crave adult approval.
Toddlers demand a lot of personal attention.
Toddlers by the age of 18 months have longer attention spans and can often play alone for short periods of time.

– that can aid in ones Social Development = mirrors, dolls and puppets.

One year olds are busy absorbing and growing their vocabularies.
Twelve months olds can usually say 1-4 words; Twenty month olds know up to 20 words and 24 month olds can often say two or three word sentences.
Rhymes are great for this age.
One year olds are starting to learn how to listen. They are starting to be able to identify the sounds in their environment.
Eighteen month olds can usually follow one and sometimes two step directions.

TOYS – that can aid in Language Development of one year olds = books, puppets, dress-up clothes, phones, musical tapes.

Toddlers are busy developing large muscle control.
They are now able to pull themselves up and most are walking on their own.
Toddlers are now attempting to climb up on things including stairs.
Toddlers are learning to control their muscles and manage their bodies.
They are now into such activities as throwing balls, attempting to catch balloons, and rolling balls back and forth to you.
Toddlers love dancing, swinging and just moving for the love of moving.
Toddlers are also busy during their second year of life, developing their small muscles. During this time they are constantly picking up small toys, dropping them, fitting them inside containers and then dumping them out again.
Ones are learning to turn pages and how to make marks with large crayons.


TOYS - that can help with ones physical development = balls, blocks, plastic hammers, large crayons, sorting boxes, bean bags, push and pull toys, things to climb on and wagons.

Common daily interactions help toddlers develop thinking skills.
Toddlers are learning about “cause and effect”, such as; if I drop my spoon, mommy will pick it up for me.
Toddlers are learning about “relationships”, such as; before I go to bed, I put on my pajamas.
Toddlers learn about “deductive reasoning”, such as; if I fall, it might hurt.
One year olds are beginning to learn about color and shape differences. They may not be actually learning the colors or shapes but they are beginning to understand that things have different colors and have different shapes.
Ones are also busy at this time, learning to classify and learning to match things by deciding what things go together.
Toddlers are a long way from actually learning to solve problems, however, they are beginning to learn that some things work while other things do not.

- that help ones develop thinking skills = one to four piece puzzles, sorting games, blocks, stacking and nesting toys.