As my grandson, now five months, begins to play with toys, I have been thinking about toys and children. As the pictures show, blocks are my favorite. We had a huge collection; I have saved them for my grandchildren. Blocks were great for sibling sharing; they were everyone’s toys. My recommendations:
indoor slide or climbing toy
outdoor climbing structure
gardening even if only on windowsill
endless art supplies
classic music, ballet music
lots of pieces of one and only one building toy; we have legos
dressup clothes, scarves, etc.-
dolls, stuffed animals, little people for use with lego and blocks
as much time as possible outdoors–gardens, backyards, parks, playgrounds, zoos, beaches, trees puddles, flowers, weeds, grass, birds, bugs, worms, etc.
New York City
I don’t recommend toys with batteries or computer chips for babies and toddlers. They need to learn the real world before the virtual world. Ideally, kids before two shouldn’t watch TV or dvds or play with computers. After two, children should only watch when interacting with parents and caregivers. Try to resist the temptation to plop your baby in front of the TV. She would be better off banging pots in the kitchen. She would be better off helping you clean the bathroom or do the laundry. We didn’t have a TV set from 1977 to 1983 and I never regretted it.