Best Preschool Toys For The Holidays
Too often children are attached to a screen, whether it be a TV, tablet, iPad, or smartphone.
I am encouraging parents and professionals to put down the technology and buy educational toys that children will enjoy, and as a bonus, get children creating, interacting socially with others, and developing a whole range of language and motor skills.
Top 10: Best Preschool Toys
Toy kitchens are adorable and just plain fun, but that is not why it is one of the best preschool toys out there. I love it for the vocabulary learning opportunities! You can play and practice functional vocabulary words such as nouns (i.e., foods), verbs (i.e., eating, chopping, cooking), and adjectives/concepts (i.e., hot, small, big). You can also practice play skills, social routines, and more!
Works On: Vocabulary, Social Skills, Turn-Taking
This is a cute game that works on a variety of skills. Being a speech-language pathologist, I use this game to work on articulation (i.e., /f/ - feed, /t/ - eat, /m/ - yummy) and expanding sentence length (i.e., Woozie eat worms). It is also good for motor learning and turn-taking skill.
Works On: Speech, Language, Turn-Taking, Motor Skills
A classic board game that is appropriate for younger preschoolers. This game can be played as young as 3-years old to work on colors and matching. Once a child starts to learn how to count, this is a perfect game to practice this skill. Plus, most of us played this game as a child. It's fun to walk down memory lane!
Works On: Colors, Matching, Counting, Turn-Taking
4. Tubular Block Set
If your child enjoys building, this is an AWESOME gift! The shapes of the blocks encourage creativity. A child can build castles, cities, pipes, really anything!! Once a masterpiece is built, have fun creating stories of who lives there!
Works On: Building, Creativity, Pretend Play, Narrative Structure
5.Chutes and Ladders
Another classic board game! I use this game frequently during articulation therapy with my preschool students. They are motivated by the ladders and the slides. I also have the opportunity to teach how to win and lose graciously and turn-taking skills. The cause and effect illustrations located at the top and bottom of the slides and ladders create wonderful language learning opportunities too.
Works On: Turn-Taking, Counting, Stories Telling, "WH" questions
6. World Floor Puzzle
Puzzles....what aren't you good for?
At my age, I still LOVE puzzles for their challenge and exercise of the brain. This puzzle also introduces geography as well as interesting facts about each state.
Works On: Problem-Solving, Geography, Colors, Vocabulary
7. Magna Tiles
These tiles provide a nice spin on building and creating. The flexibility of the magnets, the size, the colors, and the shapes all make this toy well worth the money. Preschool children up to elementary age children will LOVE these tiles.
Works On: Building, Problem Solving, Colors, Motor Skills
8. Doctor Kit
Pretend play at its best! Doctor kits are a classic for a reason which makes them one of the best preschool toys out there! All children love to be the adult and fix things for a change. These toys also foster cooperative and pretend play skills between children and adults as well as great oral language practice for storytelling.
Works On: Play Skills, Vocabulary, Narrative Structure, "WH" Questions
9. Sort and Stamp
Once again, Melissa & Doug made another FANTASTIC toy! There are many great benefits for this toy. One is sequence learning (i.e., "write a letter, then put on a stamp, next walk to post office, last mail the letter).
Works On: Expressive Language, Sequencing, Motor Skills
10. Explorer Kit
Lets encourage a love for the outdoors and science at a young age. This kit will get our preschool students outside and exploring. Once objects are found, have fun describing them and caring for them. This may be one of the best preschool toys!
Works On: Problem-solving, Science Concepts, Vocabulary
Are you looking for more information on how to best play with your preschooler?
Don't Worry! We are here to help. Read more:
Develop Preschool Speaking and Listening Skills!
If you are worried if your child has adequate speaking and listening skills for a preschooler, you are not alone! Language skills are the basis for all academic and social learning!
Read more here about functional games which are designed based on developmental milestones and personally tested by me, a speech pathologist!