Ohh toddlers.. we love them! How they stumble around on their newly found legs with with those beautifully curious eyes. Keeping them still for a period longer than 5 seconds can be a challenge in itself, never mind expecting them to stay engaged in play or a toy for a prolonged period. While it can be tempting to reach for the brightest, flashiest, loudest plastic toy, its often the simplest toy that will engage them the most. Something that captures curiosity, stimulates the senses and taps in on those early skills that young children so often like to repeat (also known as schemas). We’ve rounded up a list of our favourite wooden toys for toddlers perfect for encouraging creative play, learning and development.
The Wheely Bug
The Wheelybug is the ultimate ride on for children. Handmade and crafted from the highest quality materials, the Wheelybug is a sustainable choice. Far superior than other toddler ride ons, the Wheelybug can be ridden, pushed, pulled, kissed and cuddled! These colourful ride on bugs are great for both boys and girls and almost have a magical mind of their own. They are designed to offer hours of robust fun and help to promote self-confidence, spatial awareness and gross motor skills. Whilst other Ride On Toys may be content with going backwards and forwards or side to side, the unlimited directional movement offered by the Wheelybug means that the rider can add ‘round and round’ to their fun-filled journey. It also comes in a range of animal and fabric cover choices. The Wheelybug was a real favourite among our product testers too so you can be sure if you’re gifting a Wheelybug it’ll be treasured for years to come.
Building, stacking, object permanence, you can do it all with Grapat Nests! These bowls of different sizes really are the ultimate in open-ended play. Children become immersed in their play of filling and emptying, transferring and loading, hiding and discovering …. Their imagination has no limits. Handmade and crafted from sustainable wood and painted in child safe non toxic paint, Grapat Nests are a beautiful and unique gift that is perfect for encouraging learning and development through play.
Royal Express Train Set
Toddlers love a train set, from connecting the pieces to whizzing round the track there’s just something about a wooden train set that captures children’s attention. The Royal Express is a unique 180 piece wooden train set featuring 2 connectable trains complete with an extensive collection of rubberwood tracks and wooden accessories, and it is a beauty! Not only does it look fantastic, but the learning possibilities with a train set are so far reaching, from problem solving to creative thinking, fine motor to gross motor, vocab to language, your little one will be developing them all when playing. This is something that parents and children can really get lost in playing together.
Le Toy Van African Animal Stackers
Build and balance with the Africa Stacker. This stacker features 9 wild wooden animals including a giraffe, a lion, an elephant, a zebra, a monkey, a rhino, a cheetah, a crocodile, a parrot and a fabric bag to take the stacker with you on the move. This wooden toy is free from plastic and decorated with safe, non-toxic paints, safely tested from 18 months +.
Kids Concept Market Stand
Set up your own ice cream market, food market or even a fruit and vegetable stall with this versatile market stand. Designed and hand crafted in Scandinavia, this beautiful wooden market will provide hours of fun. The soft natural tones will ensure it looks stunning in any home or playroom. A hit with children and parents alike!
The expertly crafted Jupiduu slide was designed for fun loving children with stylish parents in mind. The toy that becomes a room feature and a statement, it is attractive and modern in it’s design. From toddler to pre-schooler your child will love climbing up and down the child-friendly steps and the high sides on the Jupiduu slide ensure good stability when sliding. What better way to be developing their motor skills? As every early years teacher will tell you, developing motor skills and encouraging physical development will lay the foundations which impacts all other areas of learning. The slide can even be played with outside (just remember to bring it in at night). It’s even had the royal seal of approval from Prince George himself!
Le Toy Van Noah’s Ark
We couldn’t have a list of our favourite wooden toys without including a wooden Noah’s Ark. Role play, sing songs and learn about animals with the Le Toy Van Shape Sorter. This is a real traditional favourite and sure to conjure memories of times gone by. This brightly painted ark has 7 pairs of cute wooden animals, Noah and his wife can also be shape sorted in the upper deck. The ark has a sliding door that allows access to the hull and a carry handle. The perfect wooden toy gift for a toddler.
Grapat Treasure Basket
Babies and children love a treasure basket. Encourage a sense of wonder and discovery as children dive in to find the treasures that their basket holds. Perfect for sensory and mathematical play. This Grapat Element Treasure basket is safe for little hands to handle whilst supporting all the early developmental stages.
Le Toy Van Wall Tiles
We love the Le Toy Van Wall Tiles at Learning Bugs. Simply hang on the wall of the children’s nursery, bedroom or playroom and you have the perfect eye level toy. It will encourage children to stand on their feet and interact at eye level to ensure that all those gross motor muscles are used in their play. The wall tiles themselves are brilliant busy boards, encouraging children to use and develop their fine motor skills whist turning cogs, pressing buttons, playing music and so much more. This is the ultimate toy for encouraging learning and development through play for older babies and it will last well into the toddler years too. We love!
So there’s our round up of the very best wooden toys on the market, as carefully selected by our product testers and early years educators. Still need more inspiration? We’ve rounded up our favourite wooden toys for babies, toddlers and kids over on our website.