Toys offer immense fun and entertainment to an infant. But that’s not all. They can also be a great source of learning and improve a variety of skill sets. Getting the right educational toy for a baby can be a challenge considering infants are still in early stages of their skill sets. And, this is where MomJunction steps in. We give you a choice of 21 best educational toys for babies. Choose the one that best suits your baby.
21 Best Educational Toys For Babies
1. Melissa & Doug Shape Sorting Cube
Skills developed: Shape recognition, color coordination, eye-hand coordination, finger dexterity, memory recall
- Constructed with soft-finish wood, and does not contain any plastics or harmful chemicals
- Features 12 pieces of various shapes that fix in their respective slot in the wooden cube
- Each piece is of a different color, which helps in recognizing and coordinating colors.
- Individual pieces can be stacked on each other and used as blocks
- Sturdy finish and built that can withstand the little one’s rough handling
Skills developed: Hearing-vision-hand coordination, sound recall
- Multiple modes – drum, language, and melody – help baby experience different sounds.
- Switching between modes is easy and is done through flipping the pages of a color book attached on top of the music table.
- The built-in narrator speaks names of colors and numbers in three languages – English, Spanish, and French.
- A master switch at the bottom of the toy lets parents switch-off the toy.
- Legs of the toy can be detached making it easier to carry and store the toy.
3. Fat Brain Toys Tobbles Neo
Skills developed: General understanding of shapes and objects, fine motor skills
- Unique design with each block shaped like a half-broken egg. Each block features dual-tone, vivid coloration.
- The blocks have a rubbery coating at the bottom half, which makes them easy to hold and stack for the baby.
- Multiple ways of playing, and each block can be used a top to spin or wobble or can be stacked in any order.
- The blocks at the top have to be stacked carefully to prevent them from falling. It stimulates the fine motor skills of the baby.
- Non-toxic, safe colors used in coloring the blocks.
Isn’t the list tempting enough to make you buy all of them? However, the extent to which your baby can learn through toys depends on your contribution too.
4. Little Star Wooden Digital Geometry Clock
Skills developed: Number and shape recall, coordinating colors, overall cognitive abilities
- Toy is shaped like a wooden clock with each number made into a wooden block that is removable from its slot.
- Slot and the respective block feature the same color
- Has multiple fun shapes including cube and star
- Features movable clock hands that can be freely rotated by a baby’s fingers
- Trains older infants to remember the order of numbers making it an excellent infant learning toy.
- Bright colors and an adorable cartoon at the center of the toy make it very appealing
5. Infantino Squeeze and Stack Block Set
Skills developed: Tactile feedback and memory, general dexterity of arms
- Soft and squeezable block set with a rubbery finish that makes it easy for a baby to grab
- Each block features a different color and a number
- Blocks also feature dice-like dots on one side representing the number
- The baby can feel the embossed number and dots with fingers. Older infants can even recount the block due to the number written on it.
- While two sides have numbers and dots, the rest have attractive images of animals.
- The soft finish and bright colors will surely grab the attention of the baby.
- The block is free of phthalate, latex, lead, and BPA.
6. LALABABY 26 Letters Cloth Card with Cloth Bag
Skills developed: Image-sound association and recall
- 26 soft-cloth cards with one card each for a letter of the alphabet
- A word starting with the letter is presented below the letter with the image of the object/item on the back panel of the card.
- Images are brightly-colored illustrations that are attractive to an infant.
- Young babies will enjoy the images while older infants can learn the sounds of letters.
- An excellent toy for playtime involving both parents and babies.
7. Tomy Hide & Squeak Eggs
Skills developed: Colour coordination, cause and effect, memory recall
- Comes with six plastic eggs in a toy crate, and each egg-shell breaks in the middle to reveal a chick inside.
- Pressing down on the toy chick gives a squeaky sound.
- The removable half of the shell has an image of a smiley drawn in the same color of the chick. The baby needs to match these colors before putting the correct shell.
- The crate features slots of unique shapes (circle, plus, etc.) and accepts just one egg with the peg of precisely the same shape.
- Excellent toy to keep a baby busy on long trips or doctor visits.
- Plastic and paint used in the toy are free of phthalates and BPA.
8. VTech Pull and Sing Puppy
Skills developed: Cause and effect, gross motor skills
- Adorable toy puppy with three buttons that when pressed can play over 60 sounds, songs, melodies, and phrases
- The adorable education toy for baby comes with a soft string that can be pulled easily.
- Pulling the toy or pressing a button lights up an LED light inside the toy puppy’s nose.
- Built-in speaker plays sounds while motorized tail and ears move on pulling the toy.
- The puppy moves its motorized legs when pulled by the string.
- An ideal learning toy for older infants who pull to stand and those taking their first steps.
9. Battat Pop Up Pals Toy
Skills developed: Cause and effect, nimbleness of fingers, fine motor skills
- A simple learning toy with four pop-up plastic characters in assorted colors.
- Each character emerges from a lid that is controlled by a button. But each button has a different mechanism – knob, switch, slider, and standard push-button.
- As not all the buttons work the same way, the baby has to memorize the mechanism.
- The toy does not require a battery as it uses springs for all the movements.
- Pop-up characters can be inserted back again by shutting the lid, thus making it easier for a baby to do it himself.
10. The First Years Stacking Up Cups
Skills developed: Fine motor skills, general understanding of shapes and objects
- The toy has a set of eight plastic cups with a small, star-shaped piece.
- The cups have a vivid color and feature numbers from one to eight on each cup.
- A cup sits snugly on top of only the cup with the next number. It thus creates a challenge for the baby to figure out the correct stacking order.
- Made from BPA and phthalate-free material.
- Plastic is sturdy and can withstand impact when baby bangs or hits the toy.
- The toy is dishwasher-safe, which makes it easy to clean and sanitize for safe use.
11. Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Tap ‘n Learn Hammer
Skills developed: Hearing skills stimulation, basic cause and effect
- Pressing the center of the hammer’s head turns-on a backlight with sound effects.
- Pressing any of the three buttons turns on melody and tunes.
- Over 20 musical tunes with audio that reads out numbers in English and Spanish.
- Tap the hammer to play different musical notes and sounds
- The sturdy built of the toy can withstand the repeated hitting.
- Parents can control the volume to low levels or turn of the audio entirely. In that case, only the lights work, which helps in quiet play.
12. TOLOLO 4PC Infant Baby Cloth Soft Animal Rattle Toy
Skills developed: Sensory development, sound-location coordination
- A set of four, soft toy cubes, each with a different pattern on each side, containing a rattle within
- Cube makes rattle sound every time it is moved or shaken.
- Adorable images of animals, objects, letters, and attractive patterns are stitched on each of the six sides of the cube.
- Non-toxic bright patterns do not fade and the cube remains elastic for a very long time.
- One cube has a non-breakable mirror that makes an exciting toy for the little one.
- The cubes also make a stacking toy as they can easily be placed over one another.
- Made from 100% cotton fabric and foam sponge.
13. Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Learning Workbench
Skills developed: Cause and effects, general hearing skills
- A single workbench-style toy that contains several toys such as a rattling hammer, backlit screws, and a rolling drum.
- The hammer contains a rattle within. It is detachable from the main toy and can be used to hammer the screws that light up when hit.
- Different mode selection lets parents choose from language, musical notes, and funny sounds.
- 15 sing-along songs and phrases are also present. A sliding switch lets the baby skip tracks with ease.
- A lever when moved turns a roller, which plays enticing music.
14. Fisher-Price Poppity-Pop Musical Dino
Skills developed: Tracking objects visually, cause and effect
- This dinosaur-shaped toy has colorful plastic balls, and when placed inside the toy, it begins to vibrate making the balls pop up and down.
- The vibration can be activated by a simple turn of a roller that can be turned easily even by the baby.
- The popping balls roll outside from a slide, which adds an element of surprise for a baby.
- The toy plays a funny sound with each slide of the ball.
- The toy also features eight funny musical tunes
15. VTech Busy Learners Activity Cube
Skills developed: Understanding tactile feel, general hearing skills and vision
- The cube-shaped toy has a different activity on five sides making it among the popular learning toys for babies.
- Activities include a roller and buttons that light up and give out various sounds.
- A motion sensor activates different sounds depending on how the cube is moved.
- There are a total of 25 sounds and melodies to entertain the little one.
- Made from BPA-free plastic, the toy features adjustable volume and automatic shut-off to conserve battery.
- Most activities of the cube can be used even without the batteries making it an ideal toy for long travels with the baby.
16. Fisher-Price Baby’s First Blocks
Skills developed: Eye-hand coordination, shape recognition
- There are ten blocks of different shapes and colors, and the blocks ship in a plastic box, which doubles up as a slot to fix the blocks.
- One piece goes exactly into one slot thus making it essential for the infant to remember the shapes.
- After the baby is done playing, the blocks can be stored in the box that features a handle for easy carrying.
- Vivid colors of the toy undoubtedly make a baby to play.
- Made from BPA-free plastic and free of harmful toxins.
17. Fisher-Price Light-Up Lion Stacker
Skills developed: Fine motor skills, eye-hand coordination
- A stacking pole with in-built lights that blink every time the baby stacks a ring.
- Four rings made with BPA and PVC-free plastic.
- A detachable lion headpiece holds the rings at their place once all are placed on the pole.
- Rings are stackable only in one order, which helps stimulate memory recall
- The base of the pole is wobbly, which attracts the baby’s attention.
- Features seven cheerful songs that play from the stacking pole.
18. ALEX Jr. My Busy Town Wooden Activity Cube
Skills developed: Basic problem solving, memory recall
- A lovely wooden toy that contains five activities in a single play cube
- The frame of the toy features a rigid construction thus making it durable.
- Activities such as bead maze and peek-a-boo, flip-open doors that stimulate the baby’s thinking and overall cognitive skills.
- Each side of the cube is colorfully painted for added appeal to the baby.
- Features all 26 letters on one side of the cube. Letters are printed on rollers, which can be flipped to reveal an example word.
- Non-toxic paint used in all components of the toy.
19. Bright Starts Baby Light and Giggle Drum
Skills developed: Vision-hearing-touch coordination, general sensory skills
- The sheath of the drum displays an LED light that glows every time it is tapped.
- The light is accompanied by sound effects. The audio also reads out numbers after every beat.
- Three play and learning modes make it a fun learning toy for the baby.
- The drum’s sheath has a mirror-like surface that doubles as an unbreakable mirror for the baby.
- Convenient on and off switch lets parents turn off all the functions of the drum. A grasping handle makes it easy to carry around.
20. VTech Click and Count Remote
Skills developed: Basic recall of numbers, language skills
- The toy remote has an array of buttons with a number each from zero to nine. The buttons are colorful and quite interesting to a baby.
- Pressing the buttons gives a good tactile feel to the baby.
- The toy features a total of 45 sing-along songs, melodies, and other entertaining audio clips.
- Teaches basic words to the toddler such as “Mama” and “Dada”.
- There are pre-recorded audio clips on weather forecast and news that let older toddlers have pretended play.
- Volume control and power-off button make it easy for parents to control the toy.
21. SGILE 4-shape Wooden Educational Shapes
Skills developed: Shape recognition and coordination, dexterity of fingers, and nimbleness
- Made with 100% natural, unprocessed wood with non-toxic paint
- Each piece has a smooth finish with no risky sharp edges
- Features four primary shapes – circle, rectangle, triangle, and square
- Four stacking pegs contain different textures and grooves that make the baby think before he can stack a shape
- Encourages the baby to experiment with trial and error
- Compact and easy to carry on long trips with the baby
Five Tips To Help Your Baby Learn Through Play
Here are some tips to let your little one get the most out of his education and learning toys:
- When introducing a toy, do not just place it in front of the baby and merely watch. Prompt the baby to use the object. Say things like “What is this thing?”, “Where did this come from?”. Cue words and phrases help intrigue the baby.
- It is okay if the baby does not understand the functions of a toy in one sitting. Babies take time to explore and understand things. Give adequate time to the little one to touch and examine the toy.
- Keep rotating the toys to generate interest in your baby.. It is visually stimulating and polishes the baby’s recall skills, especially when he sees an old toy again. Babies also tend to get bored with a toy over a period. Rotating toys helps keep the interest alive.
- Different babies have different ways of playing with the same toy, which is entirely normal. You can always guide the little one, but if he loves doing things differently, then let him do so.
- Always keep the toys clean. Look for manufacturer’s instructions on cleaning and maintenance. If the toy is washable, then wash it in warm, soapy water. For non-washable toys, wipe them with disinfectants periodically. Inspect the toys for chipped paint or broken components that could potentially harm the baby.
Toys prove to be a fantastic stimulant to an infant’s growth. When used the right away, they can even lend a helping hand in developing some of the essential developmental skills. So, make the most of them!
If you have any more toys to add to the list, you may tell us in the comments section below.