I love love love this toy. We started playing with it when Gabe started sitting up. It is great for teaching cause and effect and fine motor skills. First they knock all the bugs off with a sweep of the hand. Then they learn to grab one. Then they learn to grab the specific one they want. Then they learn to hit the button and turn it on. Then they learn to put the bugs on by themselves. Plus you can teach colors and counting. At 2 Gabe still will play with this occassionally. He scolds the bugs for "pushing" one of their friends off, and puts stacking up hats on them to see what will happen.
My DS played with this from about 9 months to 18 months - he absolutely was in love with this toy. It was at my parent's house so every time we went there he played with it the entire time. It was hard for him at first but then he really got the hang of it.
It is from Tupperware - and I think was actually MINE when I was a kid! And they still sell it! I will try to think of other things...
This is such a great thread - there are so many threads about this and to compile them all together is a great idea, so thanks. I'm sure I'll be back with more ideas!
Well, I do have one to post now:
18 months; Baby Farm Friends Bowling
12 months; Fridge Farm Magnetic Animal Set
We have the fridge magnet set already and DD (9 months) loves it. All she does right now is stand/sit at the fridge and throw them all off the fridge, and press the "Tad" button that plays music. But it'll grow with her. We don't have the bowling set yet, but I plan to get it for her for Christmas since she loves to knock blocks over.
Oh, and also Peek-A-Blocks (6 months and up). She loves to knock these over, too, and they have all different kinds (with different sounds). She's loved these for months. She mouths them, rattles them, and now knocks them over. It's a whole line of stuff, including walkers and toys in which you can put the blocks. We have the giraffe. They also now have Roll-A-Round versions.
I heartily second the Peek-A-Blocks. DD has a TON of these and she loves them. Just now, at 14 mos, she's trying to figure them out and stack them instead of just throwing them around. We got them last Christmas when she was 4 mos and they've been a hit for a while now.
I'd say these are around 18 mos, maybe 24 mos (they say 2 and up on the package) LeapFrog Fridge Phonics
DD received these for her first birthday. So far, she's a bit young for doing much more than throwing them around (do you see a pattern here?) but we like them a lot. A song plays when each letter is inserted, plus if you hit the musical note the alphabet song plays. DD mostly dances to that right now. I figure she may be young for it, but at least she's hearing the alphabet (and each letter). We usually put the letters in for her.
Who makes that cute bug toy? I think I've seen it but can't recall..
I had the SAME thing as a kid, and have been keeping an eye out. Where did you find it?
Funny, I just asked about these in my May/June Moms thread. I got a pack of them as a gift and DS had zero interest. Maybe I'll get the PAB car for him for Xmas so he can use them with something...
My good friend told me while I was pg to go out and buy the Leapfrog Fridge Phonics, she loved it so much for her boys! I have heard nothing but great things about it, and hope to get this for Xmas even though he'll only be 7 months old.
**keep it coming ladies - this is great!**
Age 0-4 Months
Baby Einstein Discover & Play Soft Blocks
These are great. Bold colors for newborn eyes, you can stack them so he can knock them over. One has a rattle inside, another has a small mirror on the side, another has a frog leg that makes it vibrate when you pull it. Each side has a different texture - these are always out of the toy box!
We also really liked the Leap Frog table, the bowling animals and shape sorters. The Leap frog was good from the time DS could sit up (placed on the floor without leg to somewhere around 18 mths or so. Then intrest waned. The animals were good around 20 months for us. Still going strong.
My kid is very into spacial relations. He loves blocks, legos, puzzles, shape sorters.
I would highly recommend investing in several set of blocks. These are very useful for all kinds of random learning. Shapes, texure, counting, colors, manual dexerity, balance, size. We have some foam ones that are great because they don't hurt if thrown and float in the bath. We also have the wooden cubes with alphabet letters on them which fit in a wagon, a small set of different shaped and colored wooden blocks and cloth block with doors and windows on them. I want to get some more wooden ones and ones which are big enough to climb on.
Ball of all kinds are also a must.
We really like the fisher price laugh and learn home. Another good long term learning/playing toy.
Wooden puzzles with knobs are great for the second year.
Don't forget lots of books and music. A subscription to a child magazine like Wild Animal Babies or Ladybug is a good gift for young children.
Little Tykes slide was great for the second year and still going strong. Should fit my son for at least another 6 mnths.
We recently started using color wonder paints which are great for places you don't want a mess, like someone else's house or a plane. They did not work for us at 15 months or so. DS did not get the delay factor, but the are great now. We have not tried the markers yet but plan to.
Magic doodle is great starting at maybe 18 mths. Good mess proof art.
washable markers are great for budding artists. Starting around 12 months or so. Easier to use then crayons since they don't have to press down. You can also try a dry erase board to avoid tons of paper mess.
The Leapfrog Table is awesome. DD got that for her first birthday and loves it. She has so much fun with that!
We also like the Leapfrog Ball. DD got that at Easter (~8mos old) and liked rolling it around. She couldn't make sounds on it, though (we had to do that). For her birthday, she got the Leapfrog Alphabet Pal, which is so similar to the Ball it's ridiculous. We've had the caterpillar out for a while, but I'm ready to switch back to the ball. She doesn't "get" the caterpillar at all and had more fun with the ball. Anyway, what I'm trying to say is, if you get or have one, don't get the other!