Tips for toys between the ages of 6 months to 12 months

Baby toys six to12 months

How will my baby's development influence the way he plays? 

The second six months of your baby's life is a time of rapid development. This is the age when your baby is likely to be on the move. By the time your baby is nine or 10 months old, he may be able to make his way around the room in some fashion. He may do this by shuffling, rollingcrawling, or cruising (moving around upright, while holding onto furniture). By 12 months he may be able to stand (with or without support) and even walk

Your baby's hand-eye co-ordination is also improving and as a result his playtime is more vigorous. He'll have great fun with robust, noisy toys. When he picks up a spoon he bangs it against his highchair. He may be able to grab two toys at once and slam them together. 

But it's not all crashing and banging! Your baby's movements are also becoming more precise. Thanks to his growing dexterity, he can now pick a raisin off the floor. 

He will also start using objects as tools, pushing a ball with a stick or chasing the carrots around his plate with a spoon. He's also more interested in interactive games. Tickle him and let him tickle you back. 

Your baby is also becoming more communicative with lots of babbling and gurgling. Talk on the phone and then pass it over to him so he can babble, then hand it back to you for another round. He's also beginning to understand words, and recognise the names of familiar objects. 

His problem-solving skills are improving. He'll take the lid off a clear container to get the toy he sees inside rather than trying to reach through it. 

Which toys will be best for my baby at this age? 

If you are keen to help stimulate your baby's development try the following: 
  • Soft dolls or stuffed animals. It's great to have toys that your baby can show affection towards and use as a source of comfort.

  • Toys that can be grasped easily. Reaching and grasping will help your baby improve his hand-eye coordination. He will soon learn to pass an object from hand to hand and bang two objects together.

  • Moving toys. As your baby begins to crawl and move around, he'll be more interested in toys that do the same. Find sturdy cars he can push around on the carpet or motorised toys that move of their own accord. He'll love to chase after them.

  • Interactive games. Any toys or games that encourage turn-taking are great at this age. It could be a simple game of hide and seek or you could use a toy telephone that you talk into and then pass to your baby to babble at.

  • Problem-solving toys. Trying to figure out why the square block won't go through the round opening of a shape sorter is a nice challenge for your little problem-solver.

  • Wooden blocks and stacking toys. Show your baby how to stack a few wooden blocks or stacking cups and then enjoy knocking them down even more.

  • Push toys. If your baby is moving around on his feet push toys will help him exercise his new walking skills. Choose a push toy that is sturdy and has a wide base so your baby can lean on it for support.

Toys should be designed with safety in mind and be made from durable, non-toxic materials with no sharp edges. Make sure that all toys are safe for chewing and check labels. Never attach a toy to a cot or playpen with elastic or string as it could strangle or trap your baby. 

What types of toys will my baby most enjoy? 

It can be difficult to know which toys will capture your baby's interest. The last thing you want to do is buy something that lies unused in storage. It sometimes helps to know which toys have proved a hit with other babies of the same age. The parents below tell us about the toys their babies love. 

"My son loves his stack toy. It's one where you place different size rings on it. It was really cheap. My son loves to tip it over and watch all the rings come off." 

"Squeaky eggs are my son's favourite. He loves squeaking the chicks and fitting the shells together. He can't fit the eggs into the shapes in the base of the egg box yet but that will come in time. It's a simple toy that grows with your child." 

"Our motorised cruise and crawl ball is an endless amusement for my son. The ball makes noises and moves around by itself which helps encourage your baby to crawl. Ours has fabric tags on and lights up. There are also buttons that when pressed play animal sounds. Jamie loves it." 

"I recently bought an activity table, now that my son can stand. It plays different tunes and helps teach your child about shapes and colours. I can see my son getting a lot of use out of it in the coming months." 

"We have a little rocket toy that's helping our son learn about colours, numbers, and shapes. It moves from side to side when a shape is correctly slotted through a port hole. When all five shapes are slotted through, the rocket launches, dropping the shapes back out as it goes. It's great fun and not too difficult to do. My son tends to get bored with other shape-sorters as he finds them too difficult." 

"Toy instruments such as drums and a piano are great at this age. The sounds may drive you crazy but it keeps them entertained." 

"We have a musical octopus toy that my daughter loves. Its tentacles are different sounding horns so that you can play tunes on it. It's soft and smells of vanilla. My little girl can't squeeze the legs yet but Daddy can coax twinkle twinkle little star out of it!" 

"Bath toys are great now that my son has learnt to sit up. He has a shape-sorting whale he loves. In fact it's the only shape-sorter he likes!" 

"My son is nine months and can't get enough of board books. He uses them mainly for chewing on but he does seem to notice the pictures now. We have an activity triangle that goes everywhere with us. The simple things around the house seem to be a hit, like a wooden spoon and a pan (very noisy), or measuring spoons." 

"Stacking cups are a hit with my daughter. It's the toy she returns to time and time again. She even likes to play with them in the bath." 

"I bought a cheap paddling pool in a sale and we use it as a ball pool. My daughter dives into it which is hilarious to watch. Other than that her favourite toy is an upturned metal bowl and wooden spoon!" 

"My son loves flap books and touchy-feely books. I love it when he turns the pages and touches the textured bits. All these months I have been reading books with no apparent interest from him is being paid b

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Baby Development

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