You’ve been searching the internet high and low for a list of toys for the kiddos in your life, from babies to elementary-age kids. Well, you’ve come to the right place! From colorful building blocks to a coding robot activity or a mini acoustic guitar, check out our picks below for the best toys the little ones are bound to love!
HuffPost may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Prices and availability subject to change. A Fisher-Price Stack & Slide Magic Mountain It's populated by a singing purple blob and sliding blue bear to combine counting and colors with problem-solving skills. Get it from Amazon for $29.72. A hedgehog named Spike It helps build motor, counting and sorting skills when kids fit peg-shaped pieces into its back. Just don't ask him if he knows Sonic. Promising review: "Love this product. It says 18+ months but it was fun for both of my kids (11 months and 3). It’s meant to help with fine motor skills. The spikes are rubber with different colors and you can put them in and take them out of the holes in the hedgehog. The best part is that when they’re done playing the hedgehog opens and you can store all the spikes in there so they don’t get lost." -- T ony Wexler Get it from Amazon for $9.59. A Fisher-Price Rollin' Rovee It has four play modes as the baby grows from an infant to a toddler to a preschooler, teaching the alphabet, counting, opposites and how to follow directions while busting out 190+ sounds, songs and phrases. Promising review: "Oh my goodness! My 20-month-old son adores Rovee! The singing, dancing, stretching, and ball play, Rovee is the best!" -- Nisella Get it from Amazon for $38.88. A Buckle Toys Blu Whale It snaps, clicks and buckles for teaching all sorts of math, coordination and motor skills. Plus, its mouth doubles as an easy-to-zipper hidden pocket. Promising review: "This is my 2-year-old's new favorite toy. He loves to buckle and unbuckle everything, and use the zipper. Plus, he holds it and plays with it as a normal, very cute fish. I also use it to reinforce colors and shapes to him. When he grows older, I will try teaching him to cross the buckles (some of the colors are the same type of buckle, some are different, but the ones that are the same are just long enough you can cross-connect them). This is also our favorite new toy because it doesn't drive us crazy while making noise and it keeps him occupied easily for 15-30 minutes every time! -- Bryant Fong Get it from Amazon for $21.99. A 112-piece Build-a-Flower toy set Any aspiring botanist or florist needs to start somewhere, especially when tracking dirt into the house is never the preferred parental option. Axel Adventures is a Nevada-based Etsy shop and family-run online toy store established in 2020. Get it from Axel Adventures on Etsy for $30.03. An easy-to-assemble, indoor/outdoor three-piece space astronaut play tent It comes with a castle tent, crawl tunnel and square tent so kids can reenact your favorite scenes from "2001: A Space Odyssey," or, you know, use their own imagination for playtime. Totally their call. Promising review: "My 2-year-old loves this tunnel and play tent set. It appears well-made, the tunnel is flexible and easy to adjust to different spaces (ha). Sadly, no plastic balls are included in this product (despite the images, which appear to be merely a suggestion), but for a child as young as mine perhaps this is for the best. My daughter loves pointing at the planets and other celestial objects and identifying them. So it's an educational toy, too." -- MamaMaiasaura Get it from Amazon for $37.99. A Little People version of Elsa's Ice Palace This allows children to re-create the story of an imperial person with terrifying superpowers and self-control issues who nearly destroys her kingdom by nearly plunging it into a state of permanent winter. That's the plot of "Frozen," right? Promising Review: "My 2-year-old got this castle for her birthday and she loves it! It’s so cute and the lights are pretty, and surprisingly not annoying at all! Highly recommend!" -- girlmom Get it from Target for $35.99. 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. A Hape My First Blocks 80-piece set The blocks are made from "child-safe materials and nontoxic finishes" to help little ones recognize colors and shapes and eventually get that engineering degree. Get it from Target for $16.99. A battery-powered, ride-on Kid Trax Real Rigs recycling truck It features moving windshield eyes and a front bumper mouth and teaches kids about the importance of recycling and, well, trucks. It also says over 100 phrases and sound effects, which could very well qualify as trash talking. Promising review: "It is easy to assemble right out of the box. It took about 20 minutes, and all you need is a screwdriver. You have to put the stickers on separately, so that also takes extra time. The interactive elements — singing/talking/moving face — are really well done! This truck was a splurge, but I think overall for all the things it does, as well as the accessories that come with it, it’s great value for money." -- GC Get it from Amazon for $150.38. A light-up LeapFrog Pick Up and Count vacuum 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 three-chord Loog Mini acoustic guitar Start teaching your little punk kid the entire Ramones catalog. 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 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 soon-to-be-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. A 78-piece Learning Resources Alphabet Acorns activity set Each acorn comes with a small toy inside to help kids with their vocab on animals, plants, and other common words. Just don't let the squirrels in the backyard see these. Promising review: "These acorn alphabet toys are a great way for little ones to learn their letters! They have a capital letter on the outside and a lower case on the inside. Then each acorn comes with a toy that starts with that letter. For example, the 'B' acorn has a boat on it. This way children can learn the sounds each letter makes. My daughter is 4 and loved playing with them and finding specific letters. My younger daughter is two and she could take part in the fun by identifying the different color acorn tops. Good quality and durable. Amazing idea!" -- Jennifer Strong Get it from Amazon for $18.39. 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 five-piece matryoshka animals Russian nesting dolls set These are made from natural materials and water-based paints and lacquers, and help to develop motor skills like stacking while revealing the tiniest little hedgehog you've ever seen. Firebird Workshop is a St. Petersburg, Russia-based Etsy shop established in 2018 that makes traditional, fine art, nesting dolls. Promising review: "The nesting dolls arrived much sooner than expected. They are absolutely beautiful and the craftsmanship is excellent! What special Christmas gifts they will be for my grandchildren. Thank you!" -- Sally H. Wiley Get it from Firebird Workshop on Etsy for $20.90+. 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. An 18-piece Fisher-Price S'more Fun campfire play set Trade all the danger of wood-chopping, roaring-fires and grizzly bear attacks for kid-friendly wood accents and soft fabric. Plus no marshmallow and chocolate stains! Promising review: "My daughter is almost 4 and has recently gotten into building tents and forts out of pillows. We used my phone to 'make a fire' but I wanted to get her something cute she could play with instead of my phone. This fits the bill and is affordable. It’s cool that you can cut the firewood with the felt ax. The marshmallows are double-sided, one side is uncooked and the other is cooked. It’s also nice that the mat for the fire can double as a picnic pad too. The material seems very durable as well. The box that this comes in is cute and doubles for storage as well." -- Christie Get it from Amazon for $24. A FurReal Moodwings baby dragon interactive pet toy It features flapping wings, eyes and a tummy that changes color depending on its mood. So yes, this dragon is indeed a mood. Get it from Amazon for $28.42+ (available in two 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. An Educational Insights Circuit Explorer Rover Perfect for exploring the world of simple circuitry through buildable space-based vehicles and playsets. If your kid shows any interest in engineering or NASA, then this is a must-get toy for them. Get it from Amazon for $31.18. A Learning Resources Botley The Coding Robot 2.0 activity set It's never too early to get the kids into coding. Botley can be programmed to follow a sequence of up to 150 steps including following plotted courses and avoiding obstacles. The best part: It's all screen-free! Promising review: "I purchased this toy for my daughter who just turned 5. She absolutely loves playing with Botley and the coding is very straightforward and easy for her to understand. She loves that she is able to program different codes to turn Botley into a frog, train, ghost, and more. I love that she is able to learn how to program things in a sequence and use if/then logic when playing. This is a great toy for children who love to learn about technology, and I love that it's a screen-free activity that encourages children to use their thinking cap and imagination during playtime!" -- Southern Made Simple Get it from Amazon for $73.91. A Speak & Spell electronic game It can only be described as a retro-tablet from the '80s for teaching kids how to spell. The best part is the old school speech synthesizer that's been used in quite a few song samples (looking at you, Beck!). Includes three AA batteries. Promising review: "We bought this for our 2-and-a-half-year-old but my husband and I play with it more. We had the original version growing up. This version seems way lighter than my old one from the '80s. We love it!" -- Lana21 Get it from Amazon for $20.88. A Grouch Couch game This is great for teaching children the importance of never losing the remote control! But seriously, they're going to love this seat (get it, love seat!). Here's how to play: Roll the dice and then feed the couch the number of treats that come up. Press the remote and the couch will either grumble and ignore the treats or eat up what you've left. If the couch is "happy," then it will spit out rewards like coins, lost socks, remotes and even a cat. Promising review: "My 3- and 6-year-old love playing this together! It’s cute and they think it’s hilarious. It’s a good game to help my 3-year-old learn to count and follow the rules of a game while keeping him engaged." -- Amazon Customer Get it from Amazon for $12.49. A 360-degree-rotating 3-in-1 LED globe, constellation map, and night light 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 National Geographic mega crystal growing lab It makes chemistry fun and colorful for the kiddies. Grow blue, pink, red, purple, green, orange, yellow and teal crystals and make them glow with a nightlight display. Promising reviews: "My 6-year-old loved this. It's a great opportunity for hands-on science and teaching basic lab safety and techniques. We made one to two crystals at a time and improved our processes along the way. One batch we left for four weeks and they were a lot larger than the 7- 10-day crystals so let some grow longer if your kids allow! Also, it comes with some sample gems and a small book on gems. My 6-year-old found it really interesting and brought the book and gems to school to share with her class. Great set. Highly recommend." -- Sarah Get it from Amazon for $29.99+ (available in two sizes). A talking, joke-telling Bucky the Stag Deer Pong game It's sure to take parents back to their college drinking days, but still fun for the whole family. Bounce or throw the balls into the cups while Bucky trash-talks and try not to call your children "bro" while playing. Promising review: "It’s cool, the kids love it. It made for some fun at a party, and they play from time to time still. The joke setting does get a bit old, but it is a little more than billy bass says, so there is that. It is worth the money, and looks cool hanging on my sons' wall over a fake fireplace." -- Kevin Mimms Get it from Amazon for $13.79.
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