Disclosure :: this guide is sponsored by Little Pnuts Toy Shoppe.
Toys For All Ages :: A Guide to Developmentally Appropriate Gifts
We have all been there. Scrambling to shop for gifts for nieces, nephews, friends and neighbors but unsure what toys are age appropriate. Because of this common struggle, we were thrilled when Melissa, owner and founder of Little Pnuts toy subscription service and the Little Pnut Toy Shoppe (located right here in New Orleans in the Lakeview neighborhood), offered to create a guide to developmentally appropriate gifts and toys for all ages. Without further adeiu, we hope you will enjoy this guide and click through to each age group for more details.
Being the mom of an infant is never easy and knowing exactly what will make them happy can be challenging. Helping them reach their milestones through play is a great way to keep your little ones content. From 0-3 months your little ones are learning about themselves and the surrounding world. Focusing on objects and learning through touch are 2 key milestones in this age range. From 3-6 months you’ll see your little ones transform more into the little person they will become. Reaching for things, clutching on to objects and teething are big milestones during this 3 month phase of development.
The bigger milestones are starting to come into play during the 6-12 month phase of development. From 6-9 months you’ll see your little ones starting to be on the move. From rolling over, sitting up and crawling, they want to explore the world around them and get into everything. From 9-12 months you’ll see them pulling themselves up, stabilizing and starting to take those very first steps.
The fun stages of development are starting to happen now. Your little ones are on the move, climbing, walking and running. They are getting into everything and wanting to play. Stages of development include learning how to fit objects into one another, put things together, stack and take things apart. You’ll notice your little ones love to disassemble everything. By age 2 your little ones are learning how to play not only by themselves but with others. Now is a great time to start introducing them to cooperative play, how to work together with another and how to really follow rules.
Your little ones are really communicating whether through sweet talk or plain old yelling. At age 3 they want to let you know just how they feel and are beginning to show a wide range of emotions. Games that allow them to interact with you, imaginative play and cooperative play, are great ways to help them learn how to communicate the right with you and to verbalize more. By age 4 they are learning how to comprehend their environment through play. They are beginning to look at things strategically, learning to recognize and identify common objects and pictures and are jumping running and learning to ride a bike. These days your little ones are using gross milestones in bigger ways and cognitive milestones are taking on a whole new meaning.
Your little ones have truly become smaller versions of who they will become in their adult lives. You are beginning to see who they are and who they one day will become in attitude and emotion. Their interests are expanding and they are more apt to tell you exactly what they want and how they want it. Play is changing now too. Competition is taking on a key role and challenging themselves to reach new levels of accomplishment move into their daily play. Games are a great way to help them learn through play, challenge them and help them understand winning and losing. Creative play is also becoming a main source of entertainment, whether it be imaginative, role playing or trying to become the next Van Gogh. Encouraging them to play helps them work out frustration as well and encourages the development of focus and concentration.