January 27, 2023


Two-year olds can be difficult to shop for. They’re officially out of the baby phase but aren’t quite ready for “big kid”It’s not the right time to start living your life. At the same time, they want to be entertained—a lot. That’s where selecting the best toys for 2-year-olds can really save your sanity (and theirs), from the best outdoor toys to educational toys and sensory toys for tots.

For 2-year olds “play is critical—it’s how kids learn,” says Robert Keder, M.D., a pediatrician who specializes in developmental behavior at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. He says that this age group is very fond of imitating adults. “They watch you cook and then fake-cook, or put a ‘phone’ to their ear,” Keder says. “Play is such a great way for kids to understand how things work in the world.”

Two-year olds are learning new skills “everything”Keder says that at this age, they are working on their fine motor and cognitive skills. For example, Keder says that they are learning to pick up puzzle pieces or figure out how to stack things to make certain shapes. “All kinds of toys are fun at this age,”Keder adds that pretend-play toys are great because children can imitate adults at a level that is easy for them. Keder points out that kids this age love to play and explore both indoors, and outdoors.

With that in mind, these are the best toys for 2-year-olds, so you can blow away the little one in your life at the next gift-giving occasion—or at least keep them occupied during your next quarantine.

A Pretend Kitchen You’ll Want To Play With, Too

Most kids gravitate toward pretend kitchens, and it’s easy to see why—they’re just fun. These kids can act like grown-ups with a variety of accessories that sometimes make noise or light up. Step2’s kitchen features a pretend stovetop with lights and sounds, a single-serve coffee maker (and travel mug) and a slew of other appliances, including a microwave and fridge. The set includes 24 accessories, including cookware and dishes, so that your little one can help you. “dinner.” And, because it’s plastic, it’s easy to wipe clean when the need strikes. A play kitchen can be used to entertain children from kindergarten through high school.

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A mess-free way to paint

Painting is a great way to have fun with your little ones, but it often ends in a mess. Crayola’s genius kit keeps everything in one place with a snap-on lid. Simply use the paint brush to apply it, then close the lid and let your child get to work. They will enjoy finger painting without having to do any cleanup. Once they’re done, simply rinse off the toy and stow it away.

A ride-on toy that grows with its owner

Skip Hop is known for its adorable animal-themed gear, and this toy doesn’t disappoint. It features the face of the brand’s beloved dog cartoon on the front of a ride-on toy your little one can use for years. Stage one allows your child to use it as a walking accessory. Stage two lets them sit down and ride around the house or driveway. This makes it a great outdoor toy. To convert the toy to a scooter, remove the seat. The handlebars are easy to adjust with your child.

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An Introduction To Play-Doh That’s Less Than $10

Play-Doh is a great way for kids to play with their hands and fingers, whether they love it or not. The kit includes four colors of Play-Doh and a variety of accessories to keep your child busy. They’ll love cutting dough with the plastic scissors, rolling it out, and using the differently-shaped molds to make new creations. It all comes with its own case to keep the fun contained when it’s not in use.

A cool STEM toy with endless possibilities

This STEM toy has magnets so that your child can create different geometric shapes. Each brightly-colored piece has a comfortable grip with a different pattern to allow for tactile play. Your child will enjoy creating new designs and admiring the work of others. You have the option of choosing from either 20 or 30-piece sets.

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A multipurpose educational toy with wheels

Learning your ABCs can be difficult. But this toy can make it easier. The toy features 30 1-inch wooden blocks, all neatly arranged in a rolling wagon that your child can push around. The blocks have different numbers, letters, and drawings that your toddler can play with. They can also use the blocks to create towers or other structures if they feel the need.

A tricycle that converts easily from pushing to pedalling

Many 2-year-olds aren’t quite ready to pedal, but this Radio Flyer tricycle has that all figured out. With the removable handle, little ones can practice their riding position and a caregiver pushes or steers them. Once they’re ready to try it solo, remove the rear handle and kids can zoom along on their own. They’ll likely love ringing the little bell, as well as filling the rear trunk with their favorite possessions or new finds picked up during their ride.

This Toy Phone Sings and Plays Games.

Children see adults on phones all the time, so they’re naturally curious. The LeapFrog toy telephone offers a lot of entertainment in a small package you can carry around in your bag. You can send pretend calls and voicemails to your child. Your child can also experiment with counting using different buttons and watch videos. Songs about using the telephone and counting are also possible. Choose from one of three colors.

This ‘Tablet’ Doesn’t Need a Wi-Fi Connection

The Inno Pad toy is very versatile and can be used for many years. The STEM media pad comes with themed sheets that your child (or you!) can slide into the tablet. Kids quickly learn to insert the sheet and press the star button—it tells the tablet which sheet is in—before interacting with the lesson. The tablet helps children learn about different occupations, weather patterns and animals. It’s also compact enough to fit into a backpack for on-the-go fun or as a travel day distraction.

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A Dress-Up Set with a Variety of Accessories

Melissa & Doug Doctor Role Play Costume Dress-Up Set

$21$34SAVE $13 (38%).

This smart dress-up set will help your child pretend to become a doctor. It features a jacket with cool medical-themed accents that’s roomy enough for kids of all shapes to wear. The thermometer, stethoscope with noise, reflex hammer and ear scope are just a few of the cool accessories that you can have on your child. Clear pockets easily store all your doctor-child’s must-have tools. If the jacket gets dirty, you can just wash it.

A Cool Looking Ball That’s Perfect For Kicking And Throwing

This outdoor toy is incredibly simple, but that’s part of its charm. At this age, Keder says that kids are happy to kick and throw a ball around—and it helps work on their motor skills. The ArtCreativity ball is made from sturdy PVC that can withstand rough play. It also has a patterned exterior that is easy to grip for small hands. It’s soft enough for little ones, too.

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