Buying a present for a toddler can be challenging. You may be trying to find a toy that’s different from anything else they already own, something that combines both playing and learning and, let’s be honest, something that won’t require too much effort to assemble or be annoying to you. But your stressful search for the perfect toddler birthday present ends here, because this list of unique gift ideas is sure to make their special day feel extra fun.
HuffPost may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Prices and availability subject to change. A talking and singing LeapFrog 'Yum-2-3' Toaster Great for learning all about numbers, colors and the most important meal of the day! Requires two AAA batteries. Promising review: "Adorable! My 18-month-old loves this little toy! He loves making the toast up and pretending to eat the food. Great quality toy and well made. Very cute." -- Beth Get it from Target for $14.99. An 'itsy pack' of Clixo building toys These combine origami, magnets and building blocks for a completely new and unique way for kids to create and play. Not only are they different, but they're super fun and satisfying to play with (the click that the magnetic parts makes just sounds and feels so good). Get it from Clixo for $29.99 (available in three colors). A set of 'Sesame Street' Cookie Monster's Shapes Magnatiles It features multiple configurations including an oven (full of cookies, of course) and a birthday cake (also made of cookies). The thematic set makes a great gift for kids under 3. This Cookie Monster set in particular has some larger pieces, which makes it even easier for little hands to handle and build. Get it from Amazon for $39.95. A three-chord Loog Mini acoustic guitar Start teaching your little punk kid the entire Ramones catalog. It comes with flashcards with chord diagrams and full access to the Loog Guitar app. Hey! Ho! Let's go! Promising review: "My daughter and I learning how to play the guitar together. Even if we don't become rock stars the quality time we are spending together is all the justification I needed to make the purchase. The strings are perfect for her little fingers." -- JSpriggins Get it from Amazon for $79 (available in six colors). A 'Silly Poopy's Hide & Seek' game From the makers of What Do You Meme?, this game actually involves hiding a fake plastic poo that talks and gives clues to its whereabouts. The theme song is infectious and sounds like it was taken straight from a 1970s game show. Get it from Amazon for $12.98. A personalized superhero cape Get your kids into cosplay while encouraging them to create their own characters and stories. Plus, who doesn't look great in a cape? Capes and More is an Etsy shop founded in 2014 that makes original superhero capes for kids and adults. Promising review: "We love this cape! I got this for my 15-month-old because she loves taking my dish towels and trying to put them on as capes. The cape is a little big for her yet lengthwise, but she still loves it! :) and it came so fast!" -- Katelyn Maxson Get it from Capes and More on Etsy for $16+. A 360-degree-rotating 3-in-1 LED globe, constellation map, and night light You can illuminate your child about not only the world they live in, but the stars in the heavens above. And if that gets way too scary (or deep), that night-light will sure come in handy, too. Promising review: "This is a wonderful globe. I bought this for my nephew and this is a fun way to give him the basics. He enjoys learning countries and he loves the night-light. The constellations are pretty cool in the dark. The size is perfect and the quality is amazing. The countries and regions are clear and they are easy to read. The base is strong and stable. It doesn't tip when spinning. The guidebook has more detailed information about the constellations and it's location. This globe definitely captured my nephew's attention and he is learning with interest. Overall, this is a perfect globe and can't go wrong with it." -- Lucky10z Get it from Amazon for $42.45. A personalized 'Animal Fun' memory game It teams the toddlers in your life with some of their favorite two-, four- and eight-legged friends. Promising review: "I brought this for my 18-month-old grandson. I used pictures of himself and other family members. The quality is amazing! I highly recommend this product to make for small children. My grandson loves to look for the matches of the faces he recognizes." -- Nana Kiki Get it from Shutterfly for $12.50. A 'Learn-A-Lot Avocados' game A love for guacamole's main ingredient should start at an early age. Plus, this toy really helps with the color identification and matching skills. Did you know avocados are also called alligator pears and that botanically, they are classified as a berry? Well, now you do. Get it from Target for $12.39. A built-to-last, no lead, no plastic, nontoxic 14-piece magnetic wooden block set Kids can create all manner of creatures and objects that will serve as a soft introduction to all types of modern art. Promising review: "The wood is excellent quality and very nice and smooth. Magnets are strong enough but not too strong. I actually like that the magnets are not on every single side because it teaches the kids to use their brains and troubleshoot. I do wish they were a little more affordable so we could get a large set, but understand why. The quality is definitely there. Thank you for providing a fun, toxic-free toy!" -- Dorothea Gerber Get it from Amazon for $34.98+ (available in six sets). An Anna or an Elsa 'Frozen 2' musical adventure singing doll Anna belts out "Some Things Never Change" and Elsa sings "Show Yourself." At least you can give the TV a rest (but not your ears). Promising reviews: "Daughter absolutely loves it! It's a beautiful doll, a lovely dress, and a nice singing clip from the film. Worth the wait for all those (like us) who had been holding out for this version of Elsa." — arzneitrank "I was very upset when I first purchased this because it had just a short song sample. I tested it in the box before giving it to my niece for her birthday and was furious when there was only a five-second song sample...turns out there is a switch on the back for demo mode." -- JF Get them from Amazon: Anna for $16.99 and Elsa for $19.88. A three-wheeled micro scooter It features an adjustable handlebar that'll grow with your toddler as they improve their balance and motor skills while whizzing by at seemingly breakneck speeds. Also includes a two-year manufacturer's warranty. Promising review: "Best scooter ever! It’s an easy assembly. It’s a smooth ride and the perfect size for a 2-year-old. Spend more money and go with the deluxe model especially if your child is only 2. I brought this to the park today and two more of my mommy friends went home and bought their kids these today too! They come in the most beautiful colors. Kids are not really taught how to use these, they seem to just get on them and go! It was amazing to see my 2-year-old-take off like a champ!" -- TexSpaceman12 Get it from Amazon for $89.99 (available in 15 colors). A construction vehicles playset It includes a gantry crane, a pickup truck, a tow truck, a logging truck, a magnetic crane vehicle and forklift as well as a bunch of road signs, barricades, barriers and safety cones. The only question is how much time can this keep the kid occupied for? Promising review: "This set is AWESOME! Our 3-and-a-half-year-old is all about construction, and these had different vehicles than the standard sets. They hold up really well to tough play! It's easy to snap any parts together and place the stickers at the beginning, then he mastered the rest on his own. It has really kept his attention." -- Jelyca Get it from Amazon for $31.99. A pair of 'Fly-noculars' Kids can explore the great outdoors up close (but, you know, from far away). And if it gets too hot out, the Fly-noculars turn into a personal fan. Bonus: You can personalize the plane with different sets of included stickers. Promising review: "Firstly, there's so much to this toy, I've never seen anything like it! It has these cute binoculars to look through to explore your surroundings. Then it's also a super cute toy airplane (Amelia Earhart is my daughter's favorite) and its propellers double as a handheld fan! My daughter, who is 2, absolutely loves this thing and has been carrying it around with her everywhere (the included lanyard is a nice touch)." -- dolaiye Get it from Amazon for $14.99 (available in two colors). An Educational Insights 'Design & Drill Bolt Buddies' rocket Because there's no better way to get kids into STEM than by building a spaceship for an astronaut and his puppy pal and using the eco-friendly packaging as a play set. Promising review: "My 3-year-old son had an old toy drill that recently stopped working and he asked me for a new one. This little set caught my eye, so I bought it and he loves it! I love that they put a little window on the side of the drill to show the gears inside spinning. Nice touch to show curious minds how these things work internally. Fits little hands perfectly and he’s been assembling and disassembling this rocket at least a couple of times a day since we got it! The little astronaut characters are cute and can lock into spots inside the rocket (like Lego pieces). Another nice touch is that the box that the set comes in doubles as a space backdrop to play with or display on a bookshelf or table." -- CK Get it from Amazon for $21.24. A 30-piece 'Farmers Market' color sorting set They can expand their vocabulary, especially when it comes to produce. And no, the fruits and veggies aren't organic, but kids can certainly pretend that they are. Promising review: "We received this as a gift for my 1-year-old daughter. She is now almost 3 and still plays with it. We have gifted this to multiple children as it has been such a hit in our family. My daughter started by being able to identify the different fruits and vegetables and then she started learning the colors. It's a fun educational toy that can be used in so many different ways." -- DL692 Get it from Amazon for $22.49. A 12-pack of durable and sustainable all-natural pure beeswax crayons These are nearly unbreakable and even come with a money-back guarantee. You better bee-lieve it! Promising review: "So I bought these worried about my 2-year-old potentially eating a crayon and having that toxic kind of stuff in her system. But, I really should have been more worried about my dogs eating crayons which so far they've snagged one and a half of these babies with no health problems for them after, so I'd say that's a major win. What's also fantastic about these crayons is that they are the perfect size for little hands. My daughter just loves to color with them and they color as smooth as Crayola and they're not all plastic and waxy like the crayons you get at the dollar store. So I'd definitely recommend these to anyone with a toddler, just watch for sneaky dogs. They'll gobble them up." -- Cassandra S. Get it from Amazon for $22.95. A 17-piece '1-2-3 Build It! Rocket-Train-Helicopter' set So they can build three different vehicles from easy-to-handle parts for little hands. STEM learning starts early! Promising review: "Really great product! I only wish I had found it sooner. I gave this to my son for his third birthday and he could have really used it for at least six months prior. It is easy enough to put together and take apart, but still holds together tightly and presents some decent physical challenges to help with perseverance. My son took right to this, putting things together first in imaginative ways and then also wants to follow the instructions, which is great. It's good quality and the pieces seem quite sturdy. We've had it about a week and it seems like it will stand up to long-term use without a problem. Very happy with this toy! -- K. D. Get it from Amazon for $14.69. A 22-piece shaking, tapping, beating and blowing wooden instrument set It'll serve as your toddler's very own beat lab. Promising review: "I saw these and immediately thought: I cannot wait to buy this for my nephew and friend's kid because it's going to absolutely drive the parents insane. Unspoken rule of parenthood right? You buy other kids the stuff you know will make a ton of noise. I was not let down. It was delivered to my sister today and shortly after arrival I received the long-anticipated text, 'Did you send these devil tools?' Yes, sister, yes I did. I will most definitely be ordering another set for my friend's kid in a couple of weeks!" -- Amanda Wiley Get it from Amazon for $33.99. A personalized wooden workbench It comes with a 21-piece accessory set including tools, screws, nuts, nails, and more all completely safe for creative and construction (or maybe even a little destructive) playtime. Raven Skull Magic is a London-based Etsy shop founded in 2016 that specializes in beautiful personalized gifts for children. Promising review: "Really happy with the product, think it is a beautiful design for a boy or girl. My 2-year-old daughter absolutely loves it and hasn't stopped playing with it since it arrived. The product arrived earlier than expected which I was really happy with." -- kaylavix1 Get it from Raven Skull Magic on Etsy for $87.04. A 10-pack of Play-Doh There was no way in hell that you'd ever be able to avoid buying this. Fortunately, it's all nontoxic, nonirritating, nonallergenic and the packaging is recyclable. But, yeah, it still smells like Play-Doh. Promising review: "Colorful, nontoxic Play-Doh has been great for my son who has many allergies including skin allergies. He has had no problem with these. This keeps him occupied for quite some time, often when I am cooking or cleaning. I played with this as a child myself and have fond memories of it." -- Brandy P. Get it from Amazon for $7.99. And a Play-Doh 'Kitchen Creations Candy Delight' play set You can't have all that Play-Doh and not have the proper instruments to turn it into different types of sweet clay-based confections. Get it from Amazon for $14.99. A 36-piece wooden pattern blocks animals jigsaw puzzle It comes with patterns for creating animals, vehicles and whatever else your child's rampant imagination can come up with, while "developing spatial awareness, color and shape recognition, hand-eye coordination, and problem-solving." Promising review: "My children (ages 2 and 4) love this activity! It keeps them busy at the kitchen table while I make lunch. I enjoy seeing the creative solutions to the problems they set up for themselves. ('I am going to make a dog!') The blocks are a nice size for little hands, the colors are bright, and there are no rough edges. The cards have interesting design problems to solve. One side of the card shows the block pieces needed to create the design and the other side shows the completed design. The product comes in a nice cardboard box with two tins inside, one for the blocks and one for the cards." -- B.S. Get it from Amazon for $13.59. A four-wheeled Hape 'Scoot Around Ride-On' wood bike with rubber wheels It'll be easy on your floors as your toddler develops motor skills as well as strength and balance. Promising review: "This is the perfect scooter for a 1- to 3-year-old. When my son was learning to stand/walk, he'd use this as a walker by grabbing the handles and pushing it around. Sometimes he'd push from the back and scoot on his knees. He learned how to get on and off by himself after a year old. Now he can scoot. Pretty soon (When his legs grow a little longer) he'll get the idea and can really go!" -- Muffin Get it from Amazon for $55.98. A light-up 'Pick Up and Count' vacuum with bouncing balls Teach your toddler to pick up after themself while making it seem like "fun." Requires 4 AA batteries. Promising review: "Daughter loves Leapfrog toys and this is no exception. She's younger than the recommended age, so I'm holding on to the smaller parts (dustbin and colored disks) and she uses the vacuum to play/pretend vacuum. She loves the buttons, the lights, and sounds. I find all of it annoying haha, but it's effective and engaging, so that's what matters." -- Jillibeanrenee Get it from Target for $26.99. A solar-powered 'Pretend and Play' calculator cash register It makes a "cha-ching" noise every time it opens and will introduce concepts of math and finance to your kids -- as well as the outdated-in-their-lifetime concepts of cash and coins. Promising review: "I bought this for my daughter when she was 2. Now 3, she still plays with it daily. She loves punching the numbers in, but her favorite part is the open button that ejects the spring-loaded drawer. She loves the paper money and the pretend credit card. I can see her and my son playing with this toy for at least ten more years. It is very durable. She has dropped it many times and it hasn't skipped a beat. The plastic is high-quality. I would definitely buy this product again." -- Ecinoderm4u Get it from Amazon for $34.99.
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