Becoming parents is not an easy task. You need elaborate preparation before taking the biggest step in life. You must be very careful about anything that you are choosing for your baby, right from the food to the toys. Gone are those days when a toy used to be just a toy. Now, toys have become the primary source of learning and developing. So choosing wisely is important as the things learnt early in life have a huge effect on the years to come. Based on the age and learning capacity of a baby toys can be grossly divided into five sections.
First section is for 0-6 months babies.
• Rattlers, teethers for auditory development.
• Colorful banners and other colorful stuffs for stimulating vision.
• Baby safe mirrors, activity toys, tummy time toys for helping it to reach out and strengthen various parts of the body, and educational videos with color and sound appropriate for the age.
Second section includes babies between 6-12 months.
• Toys of various shapes to develop sense in babies.
• Push and pull type activity toys to create movement and strengthen the body.
• Adventure course for encouraging creeping and crawling.
• Rockers and bouncers for fulfilling the need of motion.
• Stuffed toys for cuddling, Sound making toys, Storybooks, educational videos.
Third section is for 12-18 months babies, and goal oriented toys are best for this age.
• Hands on toys, toys to make the baby develop control on the movement of the toy.
• Building blocks and bead mazes for creating interest in experiment and developing fine motor skills.
• Simple musical instruments, toys for motion, storybooks and educational videos.
Fourth section comprises of babies from 18-24 months. This is the age of problem solving.
• Education videos and storybooks to learn new words.
• Active toys to develop strong muscles.
• Puzzles and construction set for problem solving games.
• Stuffed toys, puppets, dolls, costumes and simple musical instruments.
Last section has babies of 24-36 months.
• Beginners’ board game.
• Art and craft supplies, train set, dolls and accessories, consumes, miniature appliances, puzzles, construction set, alphabets and numbers.
• Stuffed toys, storybooks and educational videos.
Another very important thing, you need to check about a few things before buying toys. The paint used in toys must be lead free, the stuffed toys should be washable, fabric made toys should be flame resistant and the art materials must be non-toxic. Most importantly, give enough time to your baby, and watch him/her grow.