Age-Appropriate Toys

The following is a list of toys that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends for specific age groups. Use these recommendations when shopping for toys. Keep in mind that these are only guidelines. All toys can be dangerous when they are not used properly or are in poor condition. Parents should continue to watch out for mislabeled toys and always properly supervise young children.

Newborn to l-year-old baby

Choose brightly colored, lightweight toys that appeal to your baby's sight, hearing and touch.

  1. Cloth, plastic or board books with large pictures
  2. Large blocks of wood or plastic
  3. Pots and pans
  4. Rattles
  5. Soft, washable animals, dolls or balls
  6. Bright, movable objects that are out of baby's reach
  7. Busy boards
  8. Floating bath toys
  9. Squeeze toys

1- to 2-year-old toddler

Toys for this age group should be safe and be able to withstand a toddler's curious nature.

  1. Cloth, plastic or board books with large pictures
  2. Sturdy dolls
  3. Kiddy cars
  4. Musical tops
  5. Nesting blocks
  6. Push and pull toys (remember - no long strings)
  7. Stacking toys
  8. Toy telephones (without cords)

2- to 5-year-old preschooler

Toys for this age group can be creative or imitate the activity of parents and older children.

  1. Books (short stories or action stories)
  2. Blackboard and chalk
  3. Building blocks
  4. Crayons, nontoxic finger paints, clay
  5. Hammer and bench
  6. Housekeeping toys
  7. Outdoor toys: sandbox (with a lid), slide, swing, playhouse
  8. Transportation toys (tricycles, cars, wagons)
  9. Tape or record player
  10. Simple puzzles with large pieces
  11. Dress-up clothes
  12. Tea party utensils

5- to 9-year-old child

Toys for this age group should help your child develop new skills and creativity.

  1. Blunt scissors, sewing sets
  2. Card games
  3. Doctor and nurse kits
  4. Hand puppets
  5. Balls
  6. Bicycles with helmets
  7. Crafts
  8. Electric trains
  9. Paper dolls
  10. Jump ropes
  11. Roller skates with protective gear
  12. Sports equipment
  13. Table games

10- to 14-year-old child

Hobbies and scientific activities are ideal for this age group.

  1. Computer games
  2. Sewing, knitting, needlework
  3.  Microscopes/telescopes
  4. Table and board games
  5. Sports equipment
  6. Hobby collections

© Copyright 2000 American Academy of Pediatrics