Babies’ Stages of Standing: When do Babies Stand for the First Time?

For most parents, seeing their baby crawl, stand, and take their first steps are some of the greatest milestones to look forward to. Naturally, you want to make sure your child is on track to hit those milestones, and do whatever you can to help them. To lend you a hand, we’ve put together some of the most important information on babies’ stages of standing. When babies stand for the first time, how their fine and gross motor skills develop, and a few of the ways in which you can help them grow.

Babies and Motor Development

Babies' standing stages

It’s a known fact that human babies take a much longer time than most other species to develop, but why? Biologists believe that it’s due to several factors, namely the size, and complexity. Humans have large, highly-developed brains that are capable of advanced communication, thought processing, and of course, dexterity. The drawback of this, however, is that developing these mental skills is a much slower process than that of other species. This is most notably seen in the frontal cortex, which some theorize doesn’t stop developing until age 25. However, it also affects fine and gross motor skills like crawling, using tools, and standing.

Human gross motor development generally happens in stages. Your newborn will start with very basic, rudimentary motions that gradually increase in complexity until they take their first steps. For their first few months, they’ll mostly just get acquainted with their arms and legs, usually by wiggling around. After a while, though, they’ll learn to use their body weight to roll over. Then use their arms and legs to crawl. Once they’ve started crawling, standing will come soon after.

When do Babies Stand With Support?

Cute baby standing by taking support of sofa

Of course, babies won’t go straight from crawling to standing on their own. At first, they’ll need support from a piece of furniture, baby standing toy, or another nearby object that they can lean on. As we mentioned earlier, babies generally start standing up with support shortly after they learn to crawl, so around 9-12 months old. They’re still learning how to balance. So they may be a bit unstable for a while. Give them a bit more time, though, and they’ll be able to stand on their own.

When do Babies Start Standing Alone?

Babies will start standing alone very soon after learning to stand with support, usually within the same 9-12 month-old period. By this point, they’ve become confident enough in their sense of balance that they may no longer feel the need to hold onto anything for support. But that doesn’t mean that they’re entirely self-sufficient. Their sense of balance is still a bit unstable, so they may trip and fall if left alone. Be sure to keep an eye on them when they start standing, and stay where you can catch them if needed. They’re short enough that most stumbles won’t cause any serious harm, but it’s better for everyone if you can catch them and spare the bruises and tears.

Another thing to keep in mind: it’s usually around this timeframe that babies will try to take their first steps. Again, their balance is still quite unstable, so they’ll most likely only be able to take a few at a time. Some babies are more ambitious than others, though, and may attempt to take a few more than they’re ready for. If you’re going to let your child roam, be sure it’s in a padded area that’s safe for them to take a tumble in. You may also want to buy them a durable pair of shoes to protect their feet, especially once they’ve become confident enough to walk outdoors.

My Baby Isn’t Standing. Should I Be Worried?

Cute baby girl going for their first steps by holding a hand of mother

Of course, the time to stand for children does vary a bit. No child is the same, and they all develop at different rates. As a parent, it’s natural to worry if your child seems to be developing slower, but often, it’s not too much to be worried about. However, you should keep an eye out for signs of cognitive and/or motor development delays, and bring up anything you see with your pediatrician.

There’s no need to panic if the 12-month mark has come and gone without your child standing. If there’s still no sign of standing by 14-15 months, though, you may want to look into it further. Some children are just late bloomers, but if it is due to some sort of developmental delay, it’s best to diagnose it as early as possible to help accommodate your child’s needs.

Toys to Help Baby Stand

Baby doing his first steps with the help of table

If you want to help your baby stand faster, it’s best to turn it into a fun activity. The best way to accomplish this is by giving them toys that encourage them to stand. In the case of babies standing with support, a solid stand-up toy should do the trick. If they’re already taking their first few steps, they’ll enjoy something like a push toy. Either way, having these toys will help them develop their fine motor skills while also having a great time!

If you’re looking for more great tips, tricks, and products to help your child’s growth and development along, feel free to visit our site at ToysCentral today!

Creative Kids Painting Ideas to Try at Home

For young children, the act of painting creates an avenue for self-expression, imagination, and endless creativity. With just a splash of color and a bit of inspiration, children have the capacity to transform ordinary moments into their own masterpieces. Creative kids painting ideas can foster opportunities to communicate a young person’s thoughts and feelings. Experiment with various colors and textures, and develop their fine motor skills. In the process, they can gain confidence in their artistic abilities and become interested in trying new things. 

If you’re looking for a few fun ways to ignite your child’s artistic adventures. Here are some creative, easy painting ideas that will provide you with fun and exploration from the comfort of your home. 

Nature Painting

Kids painting ideas: Cute little girl painting in a park

When the weather is nice, take your children out into the backyard and let nature inspire them to develop unique painting ideas. Gather a selection of leaves, twigs, and flowers. Then show the kids how to use them as stamps and stencils to create colorful prints on paper. Encourage your little ones to experiment using different shapes and textures. Allow them to turn each piece of artwork into a one-of-a-kind snapshot of the natural world around them. 

Splatter Painting

Toddlers are naturally as messy as they are curious. So if you have especially young children, your toddler painting ideas should aim to embrace the messiness and desire to learn. Splatter painting might be just the thing. To try it out, lay down a large sheet or line your work surface with old newspapers. Then dip paintbrushes into non-toxic paint and show your child how to flick color onto the paper you’ve laid out for them. The unpredictability of splatter painting can turn every art session into a truly unique experience. 

Shadow Art

Boy with tablet looking thoughtfully at drawing easel

If you want to turn your painting ideas for kids into learning experiences. Shadow art can make it easy to combine painting with science and storytelling. Place differently-shaped objects onto a piece of paper, then shine a light at different angles to cast shadows onto the work surface. You could also encourage your child to trace his or her own shadow for a bigger project. From there, allow your kids to trace the different shadows with paint. Fill them in with vibrant colors that will bring their creations to life. 

Blow Painting with Straws

Using tools like straws can help add definition and fun to your paint art ideas. Blow painting can be a great way for your child or children to explore the movement and texture of different colors. To start, dilute non-toxic, washable paint with water (use a selection of colors). Dip straws into the paint and then show your child how to blow through the straw to send paint across the paper. Encourage the kids to create swirling patterns and different color gradients. 

If your children are still toddlers, keep a close eye on them to make sure they blow on the straws instead of attempting to drink through them. This way, you can avoid any accidents.

Painting on Rocks

Kids painting ideas: Painting on Rocks

If your children are tired of painting on ordinary paper. Try introducing them to a new medium, like rocks as a paint idea. Rock painting can show kids how to transform ordinary elements into works of art. Collect a few palm-sized rocks (or larger ones if your child wants a bigger project), wash them, and let them dry. From there, allow your child to paint their own unique designs, patterns, or even characters using either paint markers or non-toxic paint. After the paint dries, your child’s creations can make charming decorations for yards and gardens.

Painting with Bubble Wrap

If you’re looking for easy art ideas. Painting with bubble wrap can be both fun and a breeze to clean up after your child’s art session. Simply take pieces of bubble wrap and dip them into washable paint, then allow your child to press the paint-covered wrap onto paper to create interesting patterns. The crinkling sensation and popping sounds can add an extra element of excitement to this textured painting experience.

Make Painting a Family Activity

Mother with daughter drawing in a park

Turn your child’s painting time into something you’re able to share with them. Spread a large piece of paper out on your floor and take part in painting with your kids. Add your own brushstrokes, use your own tools, choose interesting colors. Make designs just as your children do. It’s a great way to spend time together, and participating with your child can enhance the value of the experience. 

With these colorful kids painting ideas, the possibilities are as endless as the colors of the rainbow. From exploring nature’s beauty to experimenting with unconventional painting techniques, each activity offers an opportunity for children to express themselves and unleash their imagination. Gather your paints, brushes, and most importantly, your sense of adventure, and let the creativity flow freely in your home studio. 

Teaching Your Children Gratitude: Here’s How.

Gratitude is often an underappreciated skill in children’s emotional toolbelts. It’s an important skill that they’ll use well into adult life, so it’s important to instill it in them from an early age. Here’s everything you need to know about when to start teaching your children gratitude and how to do it.

When Should I Start?

While there’s never a bad time to start talking about gratitude with your kids, some times are better than others. In very early childhood, most children think from an egocentric perspective. Meaning that they don’t fully understand that other people also experience thoughts and feelings. They slowly start outgrowing this from the ages of 2-6. As they begin to grasp the big, broad concepts like empathy, more specific emotions like gratitude will come along naturally. This period is the best time to start. 

Once your child reaches the age of 7-8 or so, they’ll have more or less grown out of egocentric thinking, and you can expand on your previous gratitude lessons in new ways. Of course, knowing when to start isn’t all that helpful if you don’t know how to start, so let’s take a look at a few ways you can help your child learn gratitude.

Practice Saying Thank You

Front view adorable son playing with mom

One of the simplest ways you can teach your children to be grateful is by encouraging them to say thank you at every opportunity. Because children require so much special care and attention from so many people in their early years. They often don’t quite realize how much physical and emotional labor that attention requires and may take it for granted. Encouraging them to say thank you to their friends, family members, service workers, and anyone else who helps them can make them much more aware of this. With this greater level of awareness, a greater level of gratitude is sure to come with.

Write Thank-You Notes

Whenever your child receives gifts for a birthday or holiday, sit down and help them write thank-you notes. Thank-you notes do two things: encourage your kid to say thank you, and give them time to think about the gift itself. We’ve already covered why saying thank you is important, but why do they need to think about the gift itself? 

Simply put, gifts are more than just an item. Gifts are a symbol of affection, caring, and thoughtfulness, and a good gift means that someone knows and cares about you enough to pick out something you appreciate. A thank-you note helps your child reflect on the meaningfulness of this gesture, and express gratitude for it. This introspection followed by action is the most important part of learning gratitude, and will help your child learn quickly.

Teach Mindfulness

Medium shot grandson kissing grandmother showing gratitude

All too often, we forget things that are truly meaningful and begin to take them for granted. This isn’t just an issue with kids; it affects adults too. The problem is that when we take the things we have for granted, the people who provide them feel unappreciated, and this creates a sense of animosity. To prevent this, start doing mindfulness exercises. Though they’re often thought of as gratitude activities for kids, they’re just as helpful for you. 

For a few minutes every day, maybe over dinner, take some time with your kids to name the things you’re thankful for. Maybe it’s the companionship of your pets. Maybe it’s the good food in your bellies. Maybe it’s the warmth and safety of your home. Or maybe it’s just the fact that you’re all there together in that moment. Whatever it is, take time with your kids to express gratitude for it out loud. This encourages the entire family to remember the small stuff that makes life great, and helps you all to practice gratitude each and every day.

Split Household Chores (And Thank Everyone for Their Work!)

Smiley boy watering plant

If your children are old enough to handle small household chores by themselves, start delegating work! This both takes part of the workload off your shoulders and teaches your kids the value of their own work. More importantly, though, they’ll gain a greater understanding of all the work that goes into keeping a clean house. Once all the chores are done, huddle up, take a few minutes for everyone to thank each other for their work, and celebrate a job well done!

Lead by Example

Finally and most importantly, set a good example of gratitude for your kids. Children watch their parents like hawks and pick up their behaviors as they grow. If you express gratitude for everything, your children will start expressing gratitude as well. Though it may not feel like you’re doing much, setting a good example like this is one of the most important things you can do to raise your children to be grateful.

Looking for more great tips, tricks, and products to raise mindful, well-rounded children? Feel free to visit our site at ToysCentral today!

Open-Ended Toys Great for Kids’ Creativity & Learning

As a parent, you want to do everything in your power to ensure your child grows up happy and healthy, and a surprising amount of that starts with the toys they play with. Children learn and grow through play and hands-on experience. So the toys they have available carry a much heavier influence on their development than you’d first expect. Purchasing the right toys for your child encourages them to lead a creative life, and teaches them more about the world around them. Of course, to buy the right toys, you have to know what to look for. So we’ve put together a short list of ideas of open-ended toys to help you out.

Building Blocks

Girl and boy playing with building blocks

Perhaps one of the simplest types of creative toys for kids is the classic building block set. Building blocks are easy and intuitive to play with and relatively inexpensive. It makes them a staple toy for children across the globe. Toys for kids did not often design to grow with their child, but in a sense, building blocks are. Your child will need to start out with baby-safe wooden blocks. Of course, but as they grow older, they can move on to more complex types of blocks. Legos, for example, are popular among kids of all ages, and even adults.

Though less open-ended, modeling kits are also an increasingly popular option, and likewise enjoyed by kids and adults alike. As a matter of fact, entire subcultures have formed around modeling kits. With cool toys like Gundam kits appealing to a wide range of audiences across countless age groups. All that to say, allowing your kids to get creative with building blocks early on allows them to branch out and find new hobbies later on in life. Inconsequential as it may seem now, it presents your child with some invaluable opportunities to meet friends, discover interests, and live life to the fullest.

Board and Card Games

Mother and daughter playing with board game

Though board and card games come with their own sets of rules. Those rules don’t always have to be strictly enforced. A deck of cards, for example, is an especially open-ended toys option for anyone who knows how to use it. Teach your child the basic rules of the games you buy. Sure, but from there, let them get creative! They’ll be able to reinvent the rules in a way that’s most fun to them. They may even come up with a brand new game that’s entirely their own. 

Aside from this, though, teaching your child to play board games comes with a whole host of other benefits. Children generally bond through play and shared interests. So if your child knows how to play a variety of board games, they’ll be able to socialize more easily with other board game enthusiasts. These meetings can turn into lasting friendships. Think about yourself and those around you. For example. Chances are, you or someone you know has at least semi-regular game nights, a time to gather, catch up, and just share a fun evening with each other.

Toys for Make-Believe

Open ended toys

If there’s one thing kids are known for, it’s their wildly active imagination. Children can take even the most mundane of objects and find some creative use for them. Weaving together complex stories from scratch in an instant. It’s truly a thing to behold, and it’s absolutely something you should foster in your little ones. Creative toys that encourage imagination are invaluable tools in your child’s development, and ensure that they’ll be entertained for hours on end. Of course, the variety of make-believe toys you can buy for your kids is just about as open-ended as the toys themselves, so here are a few toy ideas to narrow down your search.

Try thinking about your child’s ideas for their future. Chances are, they have a fun career that they’re already dreaming of going into. Though they’re much too young to enter the workforce, there’s no age restriction on imagination. With the right make-believe toys, they can start their dream job as soon as today. If your little one has an interest in construction work, for example, they’d love to play with toy tools like drills, hammers, and shovels.

If they’re more interested in a creative career as a chef, they’ll get hours of entertainment out of some toy pots, pans, and plastic food. You really want them to be able to immerse themselves, you could even buy toy uniforms for jobs like doctors, police officers, or firemen. Though it may seem like a minor thing, this sort of make-believe is the key to helping your child develop a passion for their future career, and that passion will serve them for a lifetime.

Looking for more great toy tips, recommendations, and products? Feel free to visit our site at ToysCentral today!

5 Ways to Encourage Young Writers

Helping your child learn to write is an extremely important process for you as a parent. Not only does it teach them a skill that they’ll use for the rest of their life, it also gives them a new creative outlet to express their ideas and emotions through. Of course, there’s the question of how to start writing in the first place. It’s not the same for every child, but as with many parenting questions, there are several good guidelines to start from. That said, let’s take a look at five of the most important to encourage young writers.

1. Allow Them to Learn at Their Own Pace

Everyone learns differently, especially at an early age. It’s extremely important to pay attention to your child’s learning style so that you can help them in the best way possible. Your child will learn foundational reading and writing skills best if you create their ideal learning environment and allow them to work at a comfortable pace. Feel free to offer encouragement and guidance where necessary, but avoid hounding them or pressuring them to work faster. Creativity rarely blooms under pressure, so take a step back and watch what happens!

2. Encourage Creativity

Young writers

The creativity of the young mind is an incredible thing, and as a parent, it’s important for you to nurture it. Be sure to offer your little one plenty of encouragement as they work, help them to develop their ideas if they need to, and ultimately, push them to keep imagining, creating, and writing. Writing practice for kids isn’t always easy, and can even be discouraging at times, so your words of encouragement will give them the motivation they need to keep creating.

3. Give Them a Workspace

In the same way that you need a home office to get work done, your child needs a dedicated workspace to bring out their writing skills. Try setting up a desk in the corner of their room, and be sure to fully furnish it for all their writing endeavors. Most importantly, your little one needs to protect their peepers! They’ll need a bright lamp to prevent headaches and eye strain as they write. In addition, provide them with plenty of pens, pencils, erasers, and the like so they can scribble down ideas whenever they appear. Finally, remember to get them a bookshelf to store all their favorite books and completed writing projects. With their workspace all put together, your child will have the perfect environment for daily writing practice and intensive brainstorming sessions alike.

4. Listen to Their Thoughts and Ideas

Mother daughter spending time together

Once your child has started brainstorming writing projects a bit more heavily, they may want someone to bounce their ideas off of. As their parent and number one cheerleader, you’re naturally one of the best people for the job. Encourage them to share their ideas with you, and if they ask for any help or constructive criticism, don’t be afraid to offer it from your perspective as a test reader. Having an outside perspective is an absolute must for even the most experienced of authors. By giving your child that perspective, you give them the perfect resource to refine their story step by step, from the first draft to the final copy.

5. Provide Them With Plenty of Books

Though children are great at coming up with new ideas, even they need places to get fresh inspiration. Learning and creating are both lifelong pursuits, so your child will need a steady supply of books to become more proficient as an author. We recommend purchasing as many books as possible, but if that’s not possible in your current financial situation, there’s no need to worry! 

Even if your child’s reading speed is starting to outpace your finances, visiting your local library is always an option. You can find a book on just about any subject for just about any reading level, so you’ll be able to find a great match for your child. While you’re there, don’t be afraid to talk to the librarians, either! They’re just as, if not more, passionate about reading and writing as you and your child. They may be able to offer some valuable insights into finding the right books to read and helping your child hone their writing skills. Between the near-endless supply of books and the guidance and writing tips from literary enthusiasts, your child will always have a wellspring of inspiration to draw from.

Looking for more great tips, tricks, and products to encourage your child’s creative and intellectual development? Feel free to visit us at ToysCentral today!

Unique Birthday Party Ideas for Kids

Planning a memorable kids’ birthday party can be a delightful challenge, especially when seeking out unique and engaging ideas to make the celebration truly special. While traditional birthday parties often include cake, balloons, and fun party games, thinking outside the box can elevate the experience to new heights. From themed adventures to DIY projects, there’s a plethora of fun birthday ideas that can turn an ordinary birthday celebration into an extraordinary event. Whether it’s hosting an outdoor movie night, an animal safari, a mystery party, or any number of other themes, the possibilities are endless. If you’re in need of inspiration, below are some of the most unique birthday ideas. 

1- Outdoor Movie Night: 

Transform your child’s birthday party into an unforgettable outdoor movie night extravaganza! Set up a cozy viewing area in the backyard with blankets, cushions, and string lights to create a magical ambiance. Serve classic movie snacks like popcorn, candy, and soda while guests watch their favorite films under the stars using a projector. Encourage pajamas and bring-your-own-blanket for added comfort. With the big screen outdoors, your child’s birthday will be a blockbuster hit. 

2- DIY Craft Party: 

Craft birthday party

Unleash your child’s creativity with a DIY craft party! Set up stations featuring various craft supplies such as paint, markers, beads, and glitter, allowing young artists to express themselves freely. From decorating tote bags to creating personalized photo frames, the possibilities are endless. Provide aprons and smocks to protect clothing, and encourage guests to showcase their masterpieces. With hands-on fun and artistic expression, this DIY craft party promises a birthday filled with imagination and joy. 

3- Science Party: 

Spark curiosity and excitement with a science-themed birthday party! Transform your home into a laboratory filled with thrilling experiments and hands-on activities. From creating discovery eggs to launching homemade rockets, budding scientists will be enthralled by the wonders of science. 

4- Superhero Training Camp: 

Elevate your kids’ party games at your child’s birthday party into an action-packed adventure with a superhero training camp! Set up obstacle courses, agility challenges, and strength tests to hone their superhero skills. Encourage guests to dress up as their favorite superheroes and provide capes and masks for added flair. 

5- Outdoor Adventure Party: 

Kids playing chess on outdoor camping

If traditional indoor games for kids aren’t cutting it, embark on a thrilling outdoor adventure for your child’s birthday party! From scavenger hunts to nature hikes, there’s endless excitement awaiting them in the great outdoors. Set up camping tents, organize a treasure hunt, and even consider a mini zip line or obstacle course for an added thrill. With fresh air, exploration, and camaraderie, this outdoor adventure-themed celebration promises an unforgettable birthday experience. 

6- Animal Safari Party: 

Embark on a wild adventure with an animal safari-themed birthday party! Transform your space into a jungle oasis, complete with animal prints, lush greenery, and inflatable safari animals. Set up safari-themed kids’ games like “Find the treasure” or “Spot the animal” and consider hiring a petting zoo for a hands-on experience. 

7- Cooking or Baking Party: 

Two sibling cooking in kitchen

Get ready to stir up some fun with a cooking or baking-themed birthday party! Set up stations with kid-friendly recipes and ingredients for little chefs to whip up delicious treats like cupcakes, cookies, or pizza. Provide chef hats, aprons, and utensils for an authentic culinary experience. 

8- DIY Mini Golf Course: 

Tee off for an unforgettable birthday celebration with a DIY mini golf course party. Transform your backyard into a putting paradise with homemade obstacles like ramps, tunnels, and loops. Provide putters with golf balls for each guest, and let their creativity shine as they design their own holes. 

9- Mystery Party: 

Transform your child’s birthday party into an exciting mystery adventure with a themed mystery party, complete with mysterious decorations and clues scattered throughout the venue. From decoding secret messages to solving puzzles, young detectives will be engaged in a thrilling quest to unravel the mystery and enjoy a memorable celebration with these fun activities for teens. 

10- Outdoor Water Party: 

Girls enjoying outdoor water party

Dive into the ultimate birthday splash with an outdoor water party. From inflatable water slides to water balloon fights, the fun is endless as kids cool off and celebrate under the sun. 

Putting Together a Unique Party

Coming up with birthday party ideas for kids offers endless opportunities to ignite their imagination and create lasting memories. Whether it’s a DIY craft party, an outdoor adventure, or a thrilling mystery. The key is to tailor the celebration to their interests and ensure everyone has a fantastic time. With creativity, attention to detail, and a touch of magic, every birthday party can be transformed into an unforgettable experience. It will bring joy to both children and parents alike. Whatever birthday theme you choose, consider involving your child in the process of making kids’ party invitations for a little extra fun!

How to Buy Safe Toys for Your Kids- A Guidebook

While your standard baby walker or baby play mat is a fun and effective way to keep your child entertained throughout the day. They’ll eventually need something else to play with. Children learn new skills through play as they develop, so they’ll need toys that help develop those skills. Of course, it’s also important that they play with safe toys. It will make purchasing the right toys a bit more challenging. Fortunately, we’re here to help you out with a few tips on identifying and avoiding potential hazards when buying toys.

Look for Sustainable Toys

Many baby toys made from cheap materials that are bad for the environment, but for the ecologically-conscious parent, that just won’t do. Fortunately, there are plenty of manufacturers out there with a focus on green toys made from sustainable materials. So you can provide your children with all the safe toys they want while still keeping your carbon footprint low.

Buy Organic Baby Toys

In a similar vein, we recommend sticking to organic materials when buying toys for your children. Organic baby toys are not only more environmentally friendly, but are made to be non-toxic, and therefore safer.

Be Cautious of Paint

Girl is painting

At first glance, paint might seem like an innocuous thing, but it does have its fair share of hidden dangers, especially when it comes to older toys. Remember that for hundreds, even thousands of years, lead an incredibly widespread ingredient in paint. The risks of lead exposure and heavy metal poisoning were largely unknown. So lead paint was used for anything from homes to art, and yes, even children’s toys. Remember that small children tend to put things in their mouths. Needless to say, you don’t want your child ingesting lead from their toys, so avoid old painted toys entirely. Unpainted toys are functionally the same and significantly safer, so go with those instead.

Pay Attention to Age Recommendations

Age recommendations for kid and toddler toys are typically made with two factors in mind. The developmental stage of the child and the things that are safe for them to play with. For example, children from ages 1-3 are still developing their fine motor skills and will try to put anything they can find in their mouths. Therefore, toys for toddlers within that age range usually designed to help develop these skills, and won’t have any small parts your child could choke on. Balance boards, wobble boards, and the like are extremely popular choices for small children because of this. Pay careful attention to these age recommendations, and you’ll be able to keep your child safe and entertained.

Avoid Toys With Magnets or Batteries

Kid playing with car

Though any small parts in toys for kids can be dangerous, magnets and batteries are some of the worst by no small margin. If multiple magnets swallowed, they may stick together inside your child’s body, causing punctures, internal bleeding, and other potentially deadly consequences. Batteries, as you probably know, contain highly corrosive chemicals. If those chemicals happen to leak after the battery ingested, they’ll cause internal chemical burns which may even burn holes in vital areas. Needless to say, the consequences of swallowing either can be (and often are) deadly, so avoid giving your child any toys with magnets or batteries if you think they may swallow them.

Try the Toilet Roll Test

Many sensory toys made to be chewed on, so it’s important to ensure that they won’t fit in your child’s mouth. If you’re unsure whether or not it would fit at a glance, give the toilet roll test a shot. As the name suggests, all you need to perform this test is the questionable toy and a roll of toilet paper. Try to push the toy through the hole in the center of the toilet paper roll. If the toy fits through, it’s too small and may pose a choking hazard to your child. If it doesn’t fit, it should be safe for your child to play with.

Keep Baby Bath Toys Mold-Free

Baby bath toys

While rubber duckies are a great bath toy for your kids, be careful! Many of them have a hole in the bottom. Moisture can get into this hole and create an environment for mold to grow. If your kids have rubber duckies or any other bath toys that water could leak into, be sure to clean them out regularly to prevent molding.

Looking for more great tips, tricks, and great toys for your children? Feel free to visit our site at ToysCentral today!

7 Outdoor Activities for Your Kids for Fun

With many kids spending all their time online in recent years, it’s more important now than ever to ensure your little ones are getting plenty of time to play outside. Study after study has shown that kids need to spend time in the great outdoor activities. This ensuring they do so will help not just their physical wellbeing, but their social and emotional development as well. Of course, finding activities for your kids to enjoy outdoors can be difficult. So we’re here to help you out! Here are 7 of our favorite fun outdoor activities for kids of all ages!

1. Drawing With Chalk

You probably remember this classic activity from your own childhood, and it’s just as much fun as ever for your little ones. Sets of sidewalk chalk are on the cheaper side of outdoor toys for kids. So you can provide your little ones with hours and hours of outdoor play without having to sacrifice your wallet.

2. Backyard Movie Night

This idea takes a bit more setup upfront, but once you’ve got everything you need the first time around, you and your kiddos can have as many backyard movie nights as you want! Be sure you have a high-quality projector, a projector screen, a DVD player, some lawn chairs, and a few outdoor blankets. Set all these things up in the backyard, make some movie snacks, pop your children’s favorite movie in the DVD player. Enjoy an evening of outdoor fun for the whole family!

3. Hide and Seek 

Parents playing Hide and seek with their child

Another classic childhood game, hide and seek is an incredibly versatile game that can play indoors or outdoors at any time of the year. It is beloved by children of all ages. In addition, it doesn’t require any special equipment. So getting a game started is completely free, and it’s extremely easy to teach to kids, making it a great way to spend an afternoon without spending a dime.

4. Set up an Obstacle Course

If your children are already very active and nimble. They’d love running through a homemade obstacle course. You can put one together with just a few common items you’d find around the house. For example, pool noodles could use as a javelin toss. Traffic cones can form an agility course where your kids have to weave through them. A few pieces of scrap wood you have lying around could turn into a balance beam. Once you’ve put everything together, let your kids have at it and see how fast they can clear it!

5. Backyard Camping Trip

Want to give your kids the full camping trip experience, but don’t have the time to travel far away? No problem! If you’re willing to get creative, you can give your kids an entire trip from your own backyard. If you’re already a big fan of camping. You should have everything you need just lying around. so set up your tent, lawn chairs, and sleeping bags. If you happen to have a fire pit, you could also get a quick fire going for some s’mores. Your kids are sure to have a blast, and it’ll be yet another treasured memory for the whole family.

6. Make Solar Oven Cookies

Mother cooking with her children

If you live in a particularly sunny region, this is the perfect outdoor activity for you and your kids to enjoy together. Not only will it get them outside and teach them some fascinating scientific concepts, but it comes with some tasty results as well! To get started, you’ll just need to grab a few basic materials from around the house to build your solar oven and follow a guide like this one, or just buy a conveniently premade one like this. Then, whip up a batch of your favorite cookie dough recipe to bake!

7. Learn a New Outdoor Hobby

Of course, there’s always the option of picking up a new outdoor hobby alongside your kids, and it goes without saying that your options are nearly endless. Hobbies like geocaching, hiking, nature photography, or even picking up a sport are all great for your child’s development, engaging both their minds and bodies and allowing them to use up a bit of that extra energy they have. Be sure to work with your children when figuring out what new hobby to pursue as a family. It should be something that everyone’s interested in and will enjoy. Then, be sure to carve out time in your schedule to spend on the hobby with your kids, and you’ll have active kids and countless precious memories for years to come.

Looking for more great ideas, tips, and products to give your kids exciting new outdoor activities/experiences? Feel free to visit our site at ToysCentral today!

How to Find the Best Toys According to Your Kid’s Age

As parents, we play an important role in facilitating the way our children develop. We want to provide them with all the right tools to help them learn about the world and become the best versions of themselves. Part of this effort involves offering children the right toys and activities for their various age stages. From the early days of observing the world to the later years of exploring personal interests, each age group presents unique opportunities for play and learning. 

In this guide, we’ll explore toys for boys and girls that are designed to serve them in their specific developmental stages. This way, you can ensure that their playtime always fosters growth, curiosity, and joy.

Baby Toys (0-12 Months)

During the first part of a baby’s life, they’re only really able to observe their environments, but babies experience significant development during their first year. When they’re old enough to grasp objects in their hands, there are several toys they might enjoy interacting with. These include:

  • Mobiles
  • Floor gyms
  • Rattling toys
  • Soft stuffed toys
  • Organic baby toys (toys free from harmful chemicals)

While age-appropriate toys may benefit your baby during their first year, it’s important to note that, often, a baby’s favorite thing to interact with is their parents. Try to get in on the fun when you’re child is playing to help them stimulate their minds and have a great time learning.

Toys for 1-Year-Olds 

One-year-olds are a little more coordinated than younger babies, and as such, they’re able to interact with more advanced toys. Around this age, children are able to experiment with sizes, shapes, and space. Toys for one-year-olds may include:

  • Nesting toys
  • Shape sorters
  • Noise-making toys, like toy drums
  • Baby bath toys, like rubber ducks
  • Toy vehicles

Toddler Toys (2-3 Years)

3 year old boy playing with toy

Toddlers enjoy engaging in pretend play and exploring cause and effect. As such, appropriate toys for them will be more advanced than those designed for younger children. Your child now has the motor skills needed to try large-piece puzzles or play with building blocks. They’re using play to learn more about the world around them, so the toys they play with should help them make new discoveries. Some educational toys for toddlers may include:

  • Puzzles
  • Blocks
  • Non-toxic art supplies
  • Toddler-friendly dolls
  • Balance boards
  • Toddler books
  • Pedal toys, like a tricycle
  • Activity boards

Toys for Young Kids (4-5 Years)

Children of preschool and kindergarten age can engage in longer playtime sessions, as their attention spans are more developed than younger kids. This life stage is a very curious one, as 4 to 5-year-olds ask a lot of questions and want to experiment with their surroundings. Children at this age often want to socialize while they play as well, so shared toys may be a good idea. Some fun toys for young kids may include:

  • Crafting supplies (coloring books, crayons, etc.)
  • More complex puzzles
  • Interactive playsets, like pretend kitchens
  • Dolls
  • Action figures
  • Construction sets, like Legos
  • Simple board games
  • Costumes for dress-up games

Toys for Kids 6-7 Years

Two girls drawing

At this age, your child is fine-tuning the development of their hobbies and interests. Their play stages have advanced significantly, and they’re now mature enough to handle multi-step or multi-component games and toys. The early elementary school years might have some children pursuing an interest in art, while others like sports. Video games may be worth experimenting with for moderate screen time as well. Some toys that 6 and 7-year-olds might like include:

  • Arts & crafts kits
  • Video games
  • Science kits
  • Toys that play music
  • Sports equipment
  • Barbies
  • Strategy games
  • Remote-controlled cars

Toys for Kids 8 and Up

Older kids may be a little harder to shop for than their younger counterparts. During the middle elementary age, kids really start becoming their own person and their interests may vary significantly from others in their age groups. If you want to gift your older child with something they’ll really love, take a look at the hobbies they pursue. Ask about what they like doing and choose some cool toys from the categories they provide. Some options may include:

  • Strategy games
  • Story-telling games
  • More advanced board games
  • Age-appropriate building sets
  • Tablets
  • Video game systems

By understanding the evolving needs and interests of children at different ages, you can curate an enriching environment for play. Whether you’re encouraging a baby’s sensory development, a toddler’s pretend play, or the hobbies of older children, the right kids’ toys can be a stepping stone into a world of discovery. Take your time when shopping for age-appropriate toys. Research your options and consider what your child enjoys and you’ll surely bring home something that will provide them with endless opportunities for fun.

Best Baby and Toddler Travel Toys for 2024

Taking the family on frequent trips to visit new places and see new sights is ideal for many of us. However, for those with young children, getting from Point A to Point B can be a challenge. Babies and toddlers don’t always enjoy being cooped up in a car or airplane for hours on end. It become difficult to keep them happy and engaged during a commute. If you’re planning on traveling with babies or toddlers in 2024. Here are some of the best baby and toddler travel toys you might want to bring along on the trip. This way, you can keep your little ones calm and entertained during your travels.

Magnetic Building Blocks

Kids playing with magnetic building blocks

Magnetic building blocks make excellent toys for toddlers to play with on long trips. Whether your family is commuting by car or by airplane. These building blocks designed for toddler hands, so they’re large enough for little fingers to grip. In addition, the magnetic nature of these toy options means that it’s harder for your toddler to drop or lose pieces while they’re working on a creation.

Toddler Busy Books

Busy books can serve as one of the best toys for toddlers during travel because they’re often designed to be several toys in one. With busy books, each page is a new canvas so your child is sure to find something they like within the book. For some busy book products, the pages and “stickers” are either magnetic or can attach with felt or Velcro. This means that your child can play dress-up games or set up their own story scenes in their busy books.

Audio Story Players

Girl listening to audio book

When it comes to travel toys for kids, audio story players make a great addition to any parent’s collection. These story players allow young children to pick a story from a list of story cards. Insert the card into the player, then listen to a full audio story. There’s no need to navigate through YouTube videos or listen to ads. With these audio players, your children can simply interact with engaging stories during long trips.

No-Mess Coloring Books

For toddlers who like to draw or color, mess-free coloring books may be the best travel toy to invest in. This innovative form of coloring book comes in a variety of sizes and features. A long list of popular children’s characters, so it should relatively easy to find your toddler’s favorite. The markers, pens, and stamps that come with these coloring books utilize clear ink. You don’t have to worry about accidents or ink getting all over your car during the trip. When applied to the mess-free pages, these special pens and markers reveal colors, which gives your child the capability to create interesting pictures. 

In addition, some of these coloring books count as eco-friendly toys because the pages can be used more than once.

Kindles

kids reading on kindle

If you’re looking for long-lasting and engaging travel toys, you can hardly go wrong with a Kindle. Many Kindle models have a decent battery life. These little devices can load with a wide variety of games and activities. They make excellent car toys for toddlers. They’ll help keep your little ones entertained while you’re on the road. Plus, in an effort to preserve the device’s battery life. You can switch between screen-time and screen-free travel toys throughout your trip.

Window Clings

Window clings make excellent airplane toys for toddlers, especially when your little one is sitting closest to the window during your trip. These small plastic shapes can be peeled from their sheet and applied to windows and other surfaces. With a simple wipe-down, these sustainable toys can be used over and over again. They don’t leave any mess or residue behind. They’re an excellent option for children who enjoy playing with stickers.

Sensory Boards

Sensory boards

When it comes to toddlers’ travel toys, sensory boards are a staple option. They’re typically quite compact and easy to stow away in the car. But they’re packed full of fun and interesting activities for toddlers to take part in. Many sensory board products come in packs that feature several boards. There’s always something new and interesting for your toddler to try out. Let them explore buttons, straps, switches, keys, zippers, and much more.

Traveling isn’t easy at the best of times. For families with small children, the process can be especially difficult. For the best possible outcomes during your travels, do your best. Ensure that your babies and toddlers are going to stay entertained and engaged whether you’re taking your car or getting on a plane. Remember that happy little ones make for a happy trip.