Toys are an integral part of childhood. By giving our children age-appropriate toys, we can ensure they learn and develop skills, while also being kept engaged and busy. Our earlier blog had 5 important tips to keep in mind while choosing toys, and if you have a toddler on your hands, you’ll find our toy recommendations for ages 1-3 helpful.
We’re moving on to the next age group and here are our toy recommendations for ages 4-6.
Children at this age pay greater attention to tasks, are curious about the world around them and have better sitting tolerance and fine and gross motor skills. Here are toys and games they’d like to explore.
These work great for this age group. With an introduction to peg board and jig saw puzzles earlier, children of this age can move on to working on bigger puzzles. These are a great way to give children practise with problem-solving, spatial awareness and developing sitting tolerance and perseverance.
Children in this age range, engage in planned pretend play, where they collect props and objects they need for their pretend play. Around 3 to 4 years of age is when true imaginative play emerges. By putting together a box of props, objects and costumes, you can keep your child entertained for long periods of time, while also encouraging pretend play. From being pirates to Spiderman or a busy chef, watch your little one impress you with their creativity, observation and imagination.
This is a great way to introduce children to card games. Although the game is for children from ages 3 and up, they might be more comfortable playing it independently around age 4. Uno can help them with colour and number recognition, matching, basic counting, and also taking and waiting turns. Bonus points because it can be played across ages, including adults and is a great activity for the whole family. No one really outgrows Uno. Win-win.
These are a great upgrade from regular building blocks. Although they are expensive in comparison, these tiles are just phenomenal in encouraging creativity and imagination. Your child is less likely to outgrow these soon as they can continue to attempt more complex patterns and arrangements as they grow older and there is no end to the possibilities of shapes and designs you can make with them.
Although many board games are for ages 3 and up, at age 4, children can play these games independently and more confidently at age 4. Candy Land, Ludo, Snakes and Ladders and Memory are some great classics you just can’t go wrong with and are all family favourites. Children will learn to take turns, win and lose and strategise among many other things.
At this age, children are familiar with going to school, have more opportunities to explore social and emotional development, have basic math awareness and follow more complex instructions. You can’t go wrong with the following games.
While children might have been introduced to construction toys at an earlier age, you can take this interest and skill, a notch higher with a game of Jenga. It can teach your child a lot about building, balancing, patience and also plenty of practice for fine motor skills. The best part about this game is that children don’t outgrow it any time soon and it can be a great game for the whole family to play. And plus points they’re made of wood and last forever.
Although your child might be well familiar with using crayons, paints and art supplies, you can introduce them to more complex art and craft activities at this age. This can include activities like sequencing, mazes, cutting and sticking shapes to make patterns. If your child has a set of play dough, upgrade the level by getting them a set of cookie cutters and moulds to create different objects and themes.
Kids at 5 are ready to graduate to using regular lego blocks. Every lego set comes with a detailed visual instruction booklet that kids can follow independently after a little guidance at first. Also, once they are familiar with how the different pieces work, they can explore making different shapes and the possibilities are limitless. Great for fine motor skills, and imagination and to keep your child engaged. Yes, they are expensive but long-lasting and come in a variety of themes.
Although this has made it to our recommendations for 3-year-olds, we’re putting it here again for 5-year-olds. A bicycle is something kids don’t outgrow too quickly, thankfully. Kids at 5 can learn to ride, minus the training wheels. The joys of being confident about riding a bicycle are immense. They can learn to balance and develop road sense, even though they are not riding on the road yet and it’s great for physical movement and exercise.
Children this age are more aware of what they enjoy and absolutely don’t. While you can encourage their existing interests, it’s a great time to introduce new skills, and expand and upgrade their existing skills to the next level.
This probably is a forgotten or even unfamiliar term. Many of us have probably used it as kids, without knowing what it was called. But learning to use and enjoy a spirograph is a special privilege of childhood. Once your child gets the hang of using the spirograph, watch them get engrossed in making different patterns, in different colours and combinations.
This isn’t exactly a toy, but it can be a great age to introduce your child to musical instruments. Kids are more ready at this age to comfortably learn a musical instrument. Learning to play an instrument is great for eye-hand coordination, concentration,
Kids at 6 can graduate from pretend playing with instruments to actually learning to play one. A Ukulele, harmonica or keyboard make great choices.
While again, this is not a toy, get your child a pair of decent binoculars and allow them to explore around. From bird watching, to pretend spy missions, to nature walks, it can make a great accessory and companion for your 6-year-old.
A classic game that won’t go out of style. Once your child understands the concept, it’ll become a much-loved game. Your child can learn strategizing, visualizing and problem-solving too. Plus points that it is a family favourite.
While there is a general belief that toys should focus on technology, good old classic toys that are open-ended and without batteries which give the child to do plenty are the best. Your child doesn’t need a heap of toys as the toy companies suggest, but having a few good toys that encourage imagination, spark curiosity and exploration can teach your child plenty.