Keeping a toddler entertained for more than five minutes is no small feat. And while it may be tempting to set them down in front of a television just to get them to sit still for a few moments, the guilt of exposing them to the dreaded “screen time” will often win out.
Don’t you wish there were educational toys for toddlers that were also entertaining? And I am not talking about the ones that promise to teach and amuse your little one for hours but end up discarded in the corner after ten minutes. I’m talking about the best educational toys for toddlers; ones that are interactive, yet educational, a “keep my child busy and give me a few minutes of peace” baby toy.
20 Awesome Learning Toys
Well, I’ve got you covered. This line up of learning toys is very diverse, so it should suit a variety of interests. Nevertheless, all of them in our best educational toys for toddlers list are stimulating and most of all fun!
1. Kulariworld Aqua Magic Doodle Mats
One of the best ways to keep your toddler entertained is through open-ended play, with Kulariworld Aqua Magic Doodle Mats! This type of best educational toys for toddlers has no boundaries and allows them to express their creativity. A giant doodle mat provides them with lots of opportunities for limitless play.
I know what you’re thinking, markers on the carpet, but this is an aqua magic mat. Just add plain old water to the pens and when they moisten the mat, your child’s doodles magically appear. As the mat dries the images fade away, no mess and no erasing! Your little one can draw again and again. If you have a doodle-er this doodle mat is seriously worth a try!
- No Mess Water Drawing Mat : KULARIWORLD water drawing mat is safe for children. Kids can color and doodle with clear water on the drawing mat .no ink, no paint. The back of the mat is water-resistant nylon material, no worry about wetting the floor.
- Reusable Toddler Paint Kit :Just fill up the pens with clear water and draw on the mat.The marks will fade when the mat dries up after 3-10 minutes (depending on the temperature and air flow), kids can draw on doodle mat again and again. Non-toxic, Non-polluting.
- Zoo Pattern Painting Mat: Set include: Large Size Doodle mat x 1 + Magic pens x 3 + Drawing mold x 8 + Drawing Booklet + 1 x User Manual. SIZE: 34.6 X 22.8 inch (Enough for a couple of kids to play on). It can be folded to compact size, portable for indoor outdoor and travel.
2. Melissa & Doug Dust! Sweep! Mop!
Next up is the ultimate setup for little busybodies who want to be just like mom or dad. The Melissa & Doug Dust! Sweep! Mop! set includes a duster, a mop, two brooms, and a dustpan.
This activity can not only keep your child pre-occupied when you’re doing the real chores, but it can also help teach them responsibility. When a mess inevitably occurs, there is no need to shout, just have your toddler help out. This is one of the super practical, helpful, and best educational toys for toddlers.
- Inspires hours of pretend play: We developed the Dust Sweep, Mop; Pretend play set to motivate your child to model independence and use their imagination to have fun; Each cleaning tool gives them an imagined role and pretend task to try.
- Realistic wooden cleaning toys: This colorful, kid-sized set looks just like the real thing and includes a wooden pretend play broom, mop, duster, brush, and organizing stand. The red dustpan conveniently clips into all handles.
- Builds skills and confidence: This skill-building and confidence-boosting set is designed to strengthen and embolden your child's sense of purpose. Each pretend play tool helps them develop coordination and fine motor skills. Comes in "Frustration-free packaging," intended to be easier to open and reduce waste.
3. LeapFrog Learning Friends 100 Words Book
Another awesome one in our list of best educational toys for toddlers is the LeapFrog Learning Friends 100 Words Book. Reading is such an important skill and this book really helps make it enjoyable.
By tapping the words on the page your little one can hear sounds, the word itself, and even fun facts. They can learn and begin to identify over one hundred different words, on a play mat at home or on the go. If you are looking to cultivate a young reader then look to this book.
- Meet learning friends Turtle, Tiger and Monkey who will introduce more than 100 age-appropriate words chosen by learning experts
- Word categories include: pets, animals, food, mealtime, colors, activities, opposites, outside and more
- Touching the words on the pages plays the words, sound effects and fun facts; hear the Learning Friends theme song and My Favorite Word by pressing the light-up star button
4. VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Train Station Playset
Let your little train engineer’s imagination run wild while also teaching them strategy and creativity with VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Train Station Playset. The number of track designs they can build is plentiful thanks to thirty-two separate track pieces. The smart train will then recite phrases and sounds when it comes into contact with certain track features. If you’re searching for a toy that will provide hours of creative play, look no further.
- Enhance your child's creativity with Go! Go! Smart educational toys; kids build their own toy train track and push cars around the track for miles of fun
- Interactive role-play features include an electronic train station, bridge and tunnel, and a conveyor belt hill; 32 interchangeable track pieces included
- Features VTech SmartPoint technology; 10 SmartPoint locations interact with SmartPoint vehicles to trigger fun phrases, music and sound effects
5. Hape Pound & Tap Bench with Slide Out Xylophone
Do you have a Mozart in the making? The Hape Pound & Tap Bench with Slide Out Xylophone will build their musical skills and creativity. An upgraded xylophone, little ones can either write their own song with the keys and hammer or push large balls through the top piece to hear them bounce down the keys.
This is a great tool for learning patterns and musical melodies. The bouncing balls really help develop an understanding of cause and effect in the most fun and silly way. This ultra-cool xylophone is perfect for the music lover in your family.
- MULTIFUNCTIONAL MUSICAL INSTRUMENT: This kids xylophone can be played in variety of ways. The kids can fetch balls as pounding sends the balls tinkling over or they can pull out the keyboard and xylophone and play a solo
- FINE MOTOR SKILLS DEVELOPMENT: Promotes dexterity, hand eye coordination, manipulation, arm movement, cause and effect
- ESTABLISH MUSICALITY: This pounding toys for toddlers encourages musical development and exploration, audio recognition and play
More toy ideas: The Best Baby Toys 2021 : Top Picks on 6 Popular Toy Categories
6. Melissa & Doug Take-Along Shape Sorter
Your little one will be identifying shapes in no time with the Melissa & Doug Take-Along Shape Sorter. This is one of the best on-the-go interactive toys for toddlers. Perfect nine months and up your little one can learn shapes, colors, and fine motor development anywhere and anytime.
Placing the colorful shapes into their respective holes helps with hand-eye coordination. The soft take-along box is perfect for in the car, keeping your child active and learning on long road trips. If you have a car journey planned, this is certainly the item for you!
- PADDED SHAPE-SORTER: The Take-Along Shape-Sorter is part of the K’s Kids line of early developmental toys. It includes a padded case with 2 activity sides, a take-along handle, and 9 textured blocks in 9 colors and various shapes.
- CRINKLY FLAPS: Our toddler shape-sorter toy includes crinkly flaps that have pictures of familiar items above and matching shapes beneath.
- HELPS SKILLS DEVELOPMENT: This toy bag for travel helps babies and toddlers develop sensory, fine motor, and communication skills.
7. Just Smarty Electronic Interactive Alphabet Wall Chart
The Just Smarty Electronic Interactive Alphabet Wall Chart is a fun and engaging toy – it is the ultimate poster for your children’s nursery or playroom. Kids will love the uniqueness of a wall hanging-toy instead of one that sits on a table or the floor.
When they engage with the mat, they can learn word association, numbers, and letters. This virtual teacher can even quiz them. This is such a cool way to mix it up when it comes to learning toys for toddlers.
- ✅ EDUCATIONAL TOY FOR EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT – Toddlers and young children get to learn the alphabet, word association, learn the numbers and take quizzes
- ✅ GREAT ADDITION TO YOUR NURSERY OR GAME ROOM – This interactive ABC wall poster will complement your child's room or game room. Colorful attractive design will engage and provide hours of fun exploration and learning for your little one.
- ✅ INTUITIVE FUN LEARNING – This wall poster helps your little one to develop new skills needed for preschool and beyond.
8. VTech Musical Rhymes Book
Reading and singing come together with the VTech Musical Rhymes Book. There is just so much packed into this little book your child will likely be able to discover something new each time they pick it up.
There are sounds, melodies, nursery rhymes, and music to assist with memory, repetition, and reading. But the sliding and twisting pieces also help with fine motor skills. This petite book is a great educational tool that can easily be brought along with you wherever you go! Looking for another book for your shelf? This is it!
- Interactive kids book has big easy-to-turn pages; nursery rhyme book comes with 6 classic nursery rhymes
- Early education learning center build fine motor skills by sliding and twisting the fun play pieces; Pre-K reading book has 40+ songs, melodies, sounds and phrases
- Talking book features 5 colorful piano buttons that make sounds and introduce colors and instruments; 2 modes of play: music mode and learning mode
9. Teach My Toddler Learning Kit
If you’re searching for a hands-on item consider the Teach My Toddler Learning Kit. While this one may not be an “on-their-own” toy for your little one, it is extremely educational and an awesome way to bond with your child. This kit includes sixty-eight pieces with infinite ways to learn.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to go it alone – it also includes a teaching guide. Together you and your child can explore numbers, shapes, letters, colors, and so much more, making this educational toy certainly worth a consideration.
- 68 pieces to teach your toddler the alphabet, numbers, shapes and colors
- Kit includes 4 board books, 4 posters, 7 puzzles and 55 flashcards
- Promotes literacy, numeracy, spatial reasoning, hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills
10. LeapFrog Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket
This super cute picnic basket by LeapFrog covertly teaches shapes and colors all while kids are engaged in imaginative play. Join in on the fun and it can even be a sneaky way to teach manners with this one of the best educational toys for toddlers.
The picnic basket itself plays music and sounds when they lift the lid to take out one of the fourteen pieces. This picnic set will be a great addition to your little one’s play kitchen.
- Set a space for fun, learning and sharing The Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket is appropriate for children ages 6 to 36 months
- Explore shapes and colors/colors with food pieces and manners and more with fun learning songs
- Lift the basket lid to hear sweet instrumental music and fun sound effects
11. Munchkin Fishin’ Bath Toy
If bathtime is your child’s favorite time, consider the Munchkin Fishin’ Bath Toy because learning doesn’t have to be exclusive to the living room or playroom!
This toy takes education to the bathtub, making it one of the best learning toys for toddlers to ever grace your bathroom. Toddlers will really have to practice their hand-eye coordination to successfully catch the cute magnetic-floating fish with their pole. Learning in the tub, rub a dub dub, with the Munchkin Fishin’ Bath Toy.
- Bath toy set contains (1) magnetic fishing rod and (3) underwater bobbing characters
- Characters float with magnets on top for easy fishing
- Characters are air tight, helping to limit mold and mildew
12. VTech Drill and Learn Toolbox
Have a future builder? Take a look at our next contender among the best educational toys for toddlers, the VTech Drill and Learn Toolbox. This toolbox has so many ways to learn. The gears, working drill, and screwdriver allow your child to learn how things work together, build motor skills, and strategize.
When they insert the repair instruction cards they will hear and learn colors and numbers. Great for a boy or girl, this toy will have them more than pretend building but actually building developmental skills.
- Fix and play with this online exclusive drill and learn toolbox by VTech; Open this Toddler-Friendly toolbox and get ready for role-play fun with the included electronic fix-it tray, working toy drill, hammer, wrench, nails and screws
- Working drill spins the gears and drills screws into the electronic tray's holes; turn the gears to build motor skills and hear mechanical clicking sounds
- Press light-up buttons for fun songs and to learn about a variety of tools, how they're used and the sounds they make
13. Buckle Toy – Buddy Backpack
Ditch the boring backpacks and try out the Buckle Toy – Buddy Backpack. It can be astonishing how the most mundane things can engage children, like buckles and clasps. But they love to practice fastening and unfastening buckles, and this backpack has twelve different colorful ones perfect for them!
This simple action is reinforcing problem-solving, hand-eye coordination, and motor skills. It also makes a great place for them to store and carry their belongings!
- BUCKLES - 12 child-friendly buckles in a variety of clasp styles
- DEVELOPMENT – Helps toddlers develop fine motor skills, cognitive skills, hand eye coordination, problem solving
- ENGAGING - Easy glide zipper and snap pocket; Decorated with numbers and shapes will engage child to learn early math and counting
14. TOP BRIGHT Activity Cube
A personal favorite, the TOP BRIGHT Activity Cube is the cube that has it all and it certainly makes the list of best interactive toys for toddlers. Seven different sides all with engaging, moving pieces teach colors, time, shapes, problem-solving, and so much more. Your child can move around the activity cube practicing different skills for hours. Can you say mom or dad free time?!
- CLASSIC TODDLER PLAY: Each toddler should have this 7-in-1 educational wooden activity cube toy. 7 sides of fun, bright and cheerful solid wooden activity cube, multi-functional design, no assembly required, no dangerous small parts. Play a variety of ways to better exercise the baby's various abilities. Our baby activity cube accompany the childhood of 1 year old boys and girls. It's moms' priority choice as one year old boy and girl gifts.
- MULTIFUNCTIONAL TREASURE CHEST: Our baby activity cube has a rich cover on the top cover and is designed with a beading effect. Each side has different activities, including wooden bead maze, color counting beads, rainbow gear, recognition clock, shape sorter, digital animal flip board and fun maze. It's a perfect educational toy for 1 year old that encourages babies to recognize shapes, colors and develop fine movements, hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills.
- MATERIAL AND PROCESS: The wooden activity cube made of high quality wood is sturdy and durable. Smooth edge, round chamfer and non-toxic water-based paint make the activity cube safe for your toddler, which has passed the American ASTM and CPC tests and are 100% in compliance with toy safety standards. Let your baby play at will, as we know you only want the best toy for your child. It's the best toys for 1 year old girl and boy.
15. Melissa & Doug 100-Piece Wood Blocks Set
Builders will love the Melissa & Doug 100-Piece Wood Blocks Set. Open-ended and imaginative play is so beneficial for your child, and this huge block set definitely fits the bill! Your toddler can build and design using colorful and different shaped blocks. When one design doesn’t work out, they can build their resilience and try, try, again. It is the only block set among other best educational toys for toddlers you will ever need.
- Hours of educational fun: The Melissa & Doug wooden building blocks set includes 100 durable wooden blocks in 4 different colors and 9 shapes; it’s a classic educational toy that provides hours of hands on, screen free play and learning
- Stimulates creativity: Our set is designed for kids entertainment, but also introduces early math concepts, and helps kids develop strong motor skills and even resilience as they experiment with building, knocking blocks over, and building again
- Durable and safe construction: Though our colorful building blocks are made of solid wood, these blocks are light in weight, which makes them safe for kids; the blocks have rounded edges and a smooth painted finish that won't splinter with play
16. Play22 Wooden Train Set
This classic Play22 Wooden Train toy hasn’t faded out of popularity for a reason. The magnetic connecting trains reinforce color recognition and motor skills, perfect for a growing mind. The wooden train pieces are durable and safe. An excellent item for your baby’s educational toy arsenal.
- This Is Satisfaction - Great Gift for Birthday and Holidays for Students and Boys & Girls - Original By Play22USA
- Comes In A Beautiful Display and Storage Wooden Gift Box - STEM Educational Magnet Train Set Will Help Your Child Gain Strong Color Recognition and Motor Skills
- Wooden Train Cars Includes Engines, Tender, Coaches, Convertible Coach-Hopper Car, Cargo Car, Magnetic Cargo Load, Tanker Car, Magnetic Tanker Load, Hopper Car, Cabooses
17. Lewo Wooden Puzzle
What little one doesn’t love puzzles? The Lewo Wooden Puzzle is a unique puzzle in which colorful wooden shapes include holes that allow them to be sorted onto a pegged board.
Only certain shapes match each peg, so your child will need to focus and problem-solve to make it work. Kids can practice logic, matching, and of course early shapes with this long-lasting wooden toy, great for at home or on the go!
- Shape sorter board toy includes a wooden base with 10 posts that hold colored shapes - circles, rectangles, triangles, and squares
- Stacking Blocks Contains 16 pieces,detachable and removable blocks, can increase the baby's ability of creativity. Size: 5.9 x 5.1 x 2.1 inches
- Build early shape, color and size differentiation skills,it can inspire children's imagination as well as promote their physical and intellectual development. Perfectly sized for toddlers' hands, also great choice as travel toys
18. VTech Chomp and Count Dino
An animal favorite of toddlers in this best educational toys for toddlers list is the VTech Chomp and Count Dino. Your child will have a blast feeding this super cute dinosaur, all while learning foods, shapes, colors, and counting! He has two modes so you can switch it up to keep them engaged. With over 130 sounds, songs, questions, and phrases, this little dino won’t be left in the toy box for long!
- Dinosaur toy recognizes the eight brightly colored food pieces as you feed him; provides fun responses as he eats each piece
- Baby learning toy dinosaur introduces colors, foods, shapes and counting; play in either counting or meal mode
- Early learning center with 130+ songs, melodies, sounds and phrases; kids can answer dino's questions with the correct food pieces
19. The Learning Journey Learn With Me – Count & Learn Cookie Jar
If you are hungry for learning try out the Learning Journey Learn With Me – Count & Learn Cookie Jar. Counting and math skills are made fun with a silly cookie jar that also builds listening skills and tactile development. Kids can fill the jar in play mode to sing and count along without any pressure or test their skills with quiz mode. This awesome counting toy among other best educational toys for toddlers really makes practicing math skills a treat!
- KEY FEATURES – This happy cookie jar features two play modes for fun hands-on learning. Play modes include: Let’s Learn Counting! and Find It! quiz mode. Cookie Jar is safe and a valuable learning tool for both BOYS and GIRLS ages 2 and up. THE SPECS: 10 numbered cookies with corresponding chocolate chips for counting, 1 decorative kid-friendly Cookie Jar. Requires two AA batteries (included).
- EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS – Introduces counting and numbers. Aligns with STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) standards. Creatively builds tactile, motor, listening, thinking, and learning skills.
- SUPPORTS DEVELOPMENTAL SKILLS - Improves FINE MOTOR SKILLS by requiring your child to gently place the correct cookie into the jar. Builds CONFIDENCE and Boosts SELF-ESTEEM by providing a sense of achievement. Supports COGNITIVE development by encouraging your child to think creatively to find the correct cookie.
You may want to read: 25 Top Picks of The Best Learning Toys for 1 Year Old
20. LeapFrog Number Lovin’ Oven
Finally in our list of top learning toys for toddlers we have the LeapFrog Number Lovin’ Oven. Your tiny chef can not only practice cognitive learning skills like numbers and fractions but also oh so important manners like sharing and serving.
The cute pizza and fried egg velcro together and can be cut into pieces so everyone can share and play along! The best part is that this singing oven easily stores its fourteen food and utensil items so it can be brought along for learning on the go.
- The perfect recipe for number learning fun! From counting and cooking to serving and sharing, it's preschool prep for little chefs—16 fun ingredients included! Easy take-and-go play-everything fits inside
- Includes 1 interactive oven, 4 pizza slices, 3 pieces of bread, 2 cupcakes, 1 fried egg, 1 skillet, 1 spatula, 1 baking tray, and 2 plates. Nourish math learning: cut food into 2, 3 or 4 equal pieces
- Delightful singing oven warms up counting, sharing and vocabulary skills. 30+ phrases & songs. Press the chef's hat for learning songs, or listen and learn along to fun phrases
It’s as Easy as 1,2,3!
As a parent it can be so difficult to find toys that are engaging, educational, and keep your child returning to play with them time and time again.
We hope you liked this list filled with plenty of great options such as the TOP BRIGHT Activity Cube that has endless modes of play or the Melissa & Doug Dust! Sweep! Mop! that provides that oh so beneficial open-ended imaginative play. Any of the options on this list are great for bonding with your little one and keeping them active while you wrap up a few projects, all without relying on screen time!
Let us know if you have experience with any of these toys or post one that you love in the comments. Share the joy of these best educational toys for toddlers with other parents if you liked this article!
Last update on 2021-01-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API