Two-year-olds are so much fun! They are still working on their fine motor skills, growing in their imagination and really starting to figure out their personal preferences. Lion recently turned three, so we’ve had an entire year of experience with his favorite toys at age two; Panda will be turning two in January. Between Lion and Panda, here are some of my favorite picks for a two-year-old.
1) Magnatiles – Lion has been playing with Magnatiles since before he was 18-months-old, but we definitely saw a huge improvement after he turned two. Panda pretty much only builds boxes and immediately smashes them, but this toy gets a lot of use from both kids.
2) Mop and broom set – Whenever we clean the house, the kids always want to help sweep or vacuum. We’ve been wanting to get them child sized brooms for quite some time and added these to their wishlist.
3) Blaze and the Monster Machines – Lion and Panda adore Blaze and the Monster Machines. While Panda doesn’t usually have the attention span for TV shows or movies, he will happily sit through an episode of Blaze and he loves reading books with Blaze in it. We have a bunch of the diecast monster trucks and they are well-loved.
4) Trampoline – We put this on the kids’ Christmas wish list last year, but didn’t get it. We’re putting it on again, though, and if we did end up with it this year, that would be even better since both kids would be able to use it. I think it’s a great way for kids to be able to burn off a little extra energy indoors, especially in the midst of winter when it may be too cold to venture out for too long.
5) Tegu Blocks – We have a very small number of Tegu blocks — just the eight pack travel case. And yet, on a recent trip, Lion and Panda had a blast on the two hour plane ride with four blocks each. They’re much easier for a (less than) two-year-old to connect than other magnetic blocks, but still lots of fun for a three-year-old.
6) Standing easel – Panda loves art and when we visited a children’s museum, he got the most enjoyment out of painting at an easel. At their old daycare, Lion was frequently using the standing easel when I picked him up, so this would be a great gift for both of them.
7) Hot Wheels cars – Both of our kids love all things that go and race cars seem to be everywhere in our home. While our boys love the Pixar Cars characters, the Hot Wheels packages provide great deals.
8) Balls – Footballs, basketballs, soccer balls, baseballs, you name the ball and our kids love them. We buy foam balls that the kids can use indoors and they’re another toy that make their way out of their bins every day.
9) Duplos – Whenever we went to the library, Lion and Panda made a beeline for the Duplos so we purchased some this summer. They love stacking and playing with the Duplos, with a particular fondness for trains, cars, and other Duplos with wheels.
10) Thomas minis – Lion became obsessed with Thomas minis from the moment we gave him his first one at around age 2.5. He loved the idea that Thomas and his friends were “dressed up” in costumes.
11) Tee ball set – We recently took a long weekend trip with the little guys and their grandparents who were visiting out of town. Since we were staying on a farm (we live in a condo and don’t have a backyard), Mr. Dolphin picked up a tee ball set for them to play with. They were in heaven and both kids enjoyed trying to hit the ball off the tee.
12) Silky crayons – By chance, Panda and I stumbled across a children’s art studio where he got to try out some silky crayons, which are a cross between crayons and pastels. He LOVED them and I picked up a set for him for Christmas. They’re easy for young toddlers to use and you can dip your finger (or a brush) into water to help blend colors together once you draw on the paper for added fun.
13) Stickers – I can’t tell you how much our children love stickers. They have kept our kids quiet and entertained on many a long car ride, during church and during a graduation ceremony.