Infants stay pretty darn busy discovering the world around them, from their fingers and toes to new textures and beyond. But once they reach toddler age, they expect you to morph into a constant source of entertainment, fully charged both day and night. At any given moment, they want to be chased, tickled, sung to, and danced with.
Some of the best memories come from this kind of hands-on play — there's nothing like hearing stifled little giggles during a(nother) game of hide and seek. But it's also important to keep a stash of toys to keep toddlers busy when you are tending to their many other needs.
While you're playing chef, chauffeur, nurse, cheerleader, housekeeper, or any of the other roles that parenthood demands, your kid can be playing with toys that encourage learning and discovery. Sounds pretty great, right? That's why we've searched high and low for the best toys for toddlers, and can confirm that Walmart is the toddler toy mecca.
Below, we’ve rounded up some of the best toddler toys out there to keep your little ones occupied, engaged, and interested. Whether you're at home or on the go (again), keep these kid toys handy to keep them happily entertained.
1. Teaching Moments Come in The Form of This Magnetic Train
Tegu Magnetic Shape Train, $39, Walmart
Trust us...magnets are pure magic for toddlers. They'll love mixing and matching these colorful and stackable shapes over and over again. This toy is adorable, affordable, and gets bonus points for durability.
2. Little Hot Shots Will Have a Ball With This Sports Center
VTech® Smart Shots Sports Center™, $40, Walmart
Score big with this all-in-one sports center, ready to entertain little athletes in the making. They'll be busy playing, and you'll be happy knowing you're encouraging their gross motor skills. Shapes, numbers, and fun sounds make this toddler toy a win.
3. Bookworms Are Born With This Interactive Learning Toy
LeapFrog® LeapStart™, $25, Walmart
They might not be able to read yet, but they can start to learn (and love it!) thanks to this highly interactive toddler toy. It cheers them on with questions, songs, jokes, and more as they learn to count, read, and problem solve. 400+ activities make this an engaging toy they'll keep coming back to.
4. A Love For Letters Starts With This Magnetic Letter and Numbers Set
Spark, Create, Imagine Magnetic Numbers & Letters, 120 Pieces, $7, Walmart
This is a classic must-have for every toddler as they learn to recognize letters and numbers, and it comes with a resealable bag to make clean-up a cinch. They'll stay occupied rearranging these brightly colored magnets over and over without realizing they're learning in the process!
5. Tiny Tool Set Helps Build Hours of Big Playtime Fun
Heros 30-Piece Wooden Tool Box Set, $25, Walmart
There's a lot to discover in this toddler tool chest, which strengthens fine motor skills along the way. Watch them working away with 30 pieces of playtime fun. Bright colors and a sturdy design get the job done every time!
6. Aspiring Artists Bring Playtime to Life With This Tabletop Easel
Kid Connection Wooden Tabletop Easel, $20, Walmart
Help them create their masterpiece! This toddler toy transitions from a chalkboard to a magnetic dry erase board for hours of artistic fun. It also comes with drawing paper, chalk, magnets, and a marker to set your little one up for playtime success time and again.
7. Build Their Imagination With Classic Wooden Blocks
Heros 100-Piece Natural Wooden Blocks, $23, Walmart
From castles to cities, bridges and beyond, your toddler's imagination will take flight with these classic favorite. 100 wooden blocks in all shapes and sizes will keep them happily occupied as they create a world of their own.
8. Animal Lovers Will Go Wild For Their Own Tiger Friend
FurReal Roarin Tyler, the Playful Tiger, $87, Walmart
This tiny tiger friend can respond and interact with your inquisitive toddler. Adorable and cuddly, they'll love being his caretaker. With more than 100 sounds and movements, this is a toddler toy that continues to surprise and delight (and distract them!).
9. This Take-Along Tablet Encourages Education And Fun
HighQ Learning Tab 7" Kids Tablet, $78, Walmart
This learning tablet is pre-loaded with award-winning apps especially for little ones. From games to music and more, this take-anywhere toy will keep them engaged and entertained at home or on the go, and the gel case keeps this toddler toy well protected.
10. Feel the Rhythm With This Moving, Musical Robot
Fisher-Price Bright Beats Juniors - BeatBo, $8, Walmart
For little ones that were born to boogie, this toy lights up, plays music, and dances right alongside them. Interactive and engaging, toddlers will love bringing him to life time and again. It's a built-in dance party every time.
11. This Action-Packed Play Set Encourages Thoughtful Play
Melissa and Doug Nesting and Sorting Garages and Cars 14-Piece Play Set, $25, Walmart
Complete with six vehicles and six buildings, this wooden play set brings their imagination to life. Toddlers will go to town on this community-inspired toy, encouraging active play as well as recognition of the different cars and buildings. There's always a new way to play with this toddler toy, making it an easy favorite for years to come.
12. Mold Little Minds With Learning-Inspired Play-Doh
Play-Doh Numbers, Letters 'N Fun Set, $7, Walmart
There's nothing like a Play-Doh session to keep them occupied and excited. Mold, cut, press, and roll out the fun with this numbers and letters set, encouraging recognition of letters, numbers and colors. Make playtime fun endless with this classic toddler toy.
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