My daughter is exactly three and a half years old. Yesterday, she broke something of mine that she wasn’t supposed to touch. It was no big deal, really, but I expect that she can learn the concept of respecting other people’s things at this age. In order to give her a logical consequence (or at least related consequence), I told her that since she had taken something of mine without her permission, she would have to lose a toy of hers for a week. Then I scanned the toys in our living room, looking for the right one — something that wasn’t too dear to her, like a favorite doll, but something that was still relevant and not mostly a toy her younger brother only uses. As my eyes ran over the shelves and bins, I had a dawning realization… our toys are, for the most part, grossly inappropriate for her age. They literally range from something you would give a 3 month old, like soft fuzzy balls, to those sorting boxes.
My son is 18 months, so, theoretically these toys are relevant to him, and my daughter does still play with them… but that’s probably because she doesn’t have anything better! We tend to keep her “crafting” related (messy / tiny bits) toys in her room, but she literally has nothing age appropriate in our main play / living area.
So, now I’m on a quest to find some good toys. We get a lot of hand-me-down toys (yay!) and the few we do buy we almost always get used. After the first months of having a newborn, I couldn’t stomach the amount of new stuff I kept buying and starting hunting Craig’s List instead.
Here’s my list so far… I’m going to add to this post as I go and use it as a reference point, though, in reality, we’ll maybe end up with only three or four new toys for the next six months or so.
Neurosmith Music Blocks
A few years ago, I saw a preschooler playing with this toy. It’s amazing, especially for children who are tuned into music. I can see both of my children enjoying this for years, and actually regret not having one earlier in both of their lives. Apparently the newer version pales by comparison (read this review to get a good understanding why), but you can still get the older version on eBay. This link is to the new version, since it’s a more stable location on Amazon.
My daughter loves music and dancing, and my son is just figuring out how to bop along, so this looks like a great way to let them have control of the music they’re grooving to. All too often I end up putting on a mix of music for them that doesn’t suit their moods. I’ve also seen this on eBay for the “used” price listed on Amazon – shyuh! Like I’ve got $100 for new children’s toys!
I think my daughter will LOVE this. $16
This looks so cool and would be great to bring to her preschool next year.
Again, this would be great at home or preschool. I love that, like an ant farm, they can see exactly how the plant is growing.