Thursday, 23 March 2017

Wooden Toys my 1 Year Old Loves


Now that L is over 1, he's very much at the stage where he's really getting more interested in wanting to play with toys, obviously not at the same level as his older brother, but he visibly plays differently to how LO used to at the same age, because firstly he's immersed in the world of play already with having an older sibling to copy, and secondly, the sheer amount of toys we have in the house has trebled since LO was a baby- so there's a lot more stuff for him to explore and play with anyway. We are in need of a serious clear out, of both old baby clothes and also toys, but I get very sentimental about toys in particular, and it's rare for me to get rid of any. But what I have found is that the wooden toys LO got as a baby have really stood the test of time (and all things toddlerhood) and actually, it's these toys which seem to have become out 'go-to' toys anyway. Given the choice, I always favour wooden toys over plastic ones with lights and buttons anyway, just because they're usually more open-ended, more durable, they look nicer and can often be used in a multitude of ways.

We don't buy toys all that often, and actually our collection of wooden ones is quite small. I'm going to be doing a separate post about our wooden toy wishlist (things we might save up for once we have had a much needed clear out of toys which are no longer used), but for now I thought I'd share a few of the wooden toys L has been enjoying playing with over the past few months (he's currently 14 months). They're toys he regularly revisits and will sit and happily play with for as long as his attention will allow and these tend to be my 'go-to' toys when I want to find an easy activity to keep him busy for a few minutes. 

 We all love this wooden race ramp which we got in Sainsbury's for £6 (it's normally £10 but it's often on special offer). He will sit for ages and roll the little wooden cars down or play with the cars on their own.

 This colourful wooden pick-up truck came from IKEA and both our boys enjoy playing with it. It's multi-use in that it is a vehicle but also has a magnetic crane to lift the shapes, while the trailer is also a shape sorter.

 LO has a wooden play farm which is too fiddly for L to play with yet, but he does enjoy playing with the wooden play figures and animals which come with it. We can sit and tell stories, talk about the colours and animals, make animal noises or just play his favourite game of posting them into a box and taking them out again.

 I'm not sure where these wooden monkeys are from as they were a present, but we use them to play stacking towers which L will knock over. As he gets older, we can also use them for colour recognition and sorting. When we first got them I really wasn't sure what to do with them, so just had them on display, but that's the beauty of wooden toys- they allow the child to make up their own games and to use them in whatever way they want to.

 This Noah's Ark is actually another of LO's toys but which is now more age appropriate for L. This one is by World of Discovery but I've seen lots of different ones online too. We use these in the same way as the farm animals, to use when we sing songs, or to make animal sounds, and again, he loves posting the animals through the shape sorter boat or just to hide in my makeup bag or a shoe box.

 This strange looking toy is the Manhattan Toy Skwish which is apparently quite a famous toy, although I'd never seen one until L got given this as a baby. It's basically a series of wooden beads linked by elastics and wooden rods. It's suitable from birth but he still enjoys holding it and shaking it about now.

 L's favourite activity by far is to play posting- from posting milk bottle lids into slots in a box to posting wooden animals into a shape sorter. So we hired this ELC wooden post box from our local toy library and he absolutely loved it. It's such a simple concept but it also allowed me to set up a game of post offices for both boys to play together, with L being in charge of the post box and LO being in charge of the shop and cash register (I really find it hard to find things they can both do together without one of them losing interest or L throwing everything around).

 I got L this push along from Orange Tree Toys for his 1st birthday and it was about £9 (you can get them online, and from lots of garden centres and toy shops). As he's not yet walking, he enjoys just pushing it forwards and backwards on the floor, but as he starts to take first steps I know he'll get hours of enjoyment pushing it along our wooden hallway.

 These rainbow geometric blocks are great fun as L loves looking at the colours (I hold them up to the window so he can see the colours clearly in the light) but most of all, he just enjoys knocking down the towers I build for him. Again, they're a great toy as LO enjoys them too, and they're great for shape recognition and making patterns.

 I had to briefly mention our wooden trains as I think these are the toys L sees the most often as LO plays with them constantly and always has a train track set up on his floor (which L then crawls over, demolishes and LO gets cross...) So, yes, it isn't the train track which L enjoys as such, but the actual wooden trains themselves. He loves rolling them back and forth, carrying them and chewing on them too of course. LO loves telling stories with his trains and L and I will often just sit and listen to his train tales, and get him to tell L what colour they are and so on...


So those are a few of our baby boy's favourite wooden toys and some of the games we play with them. Writing this has actually made me realise how many toys we have which we don't actually use, and which ones are our most used and enjoyed, so I think a clear out is definitely in order. Many of our toys have been presents but also a lot have come from charity shops, so if you do find you're overrun with toys which are no longer used, definitely have a think about whether you might donate a few to a local charity shop. 

I'll be doing another post all about our wooden toy wishlist very soon... 


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2 comments

  1. What a gorgeous selection of toys Amelia! Those monkeys are seriously cute. We have that Ikea crane and all of my boys have loved that Skwish toy. It's handy when they're little for taking in the car. I may have to get one of those wooden ramps. There is one at playgroup and O loves it, and my eldest two are still mad for their train set! It's so worth the money, and then you can just keep expanding it xx

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  2. We had a racing ramp like that but we called ours a click clack because of the noise it made as they used it. Such great toys! x

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