At 6 months old, your baby's active development is easy to see. Toys specially designed for 6-month-old babies can also help move things along! Read on to learn why toys are important and which ones are great for 6-month-olds.
How do toys help your baby?
Playing with toys is very important for your baby's mental, physical, emotional, and social development. Toys can be fun tools to help with your baby's development and learning. Your newborn baby is probably developing really quickly during the first 6 months. Providing them with age-appropriate toys can help them explore and discover their environment.
Toys for 6-month-old development
Your baby is growing fast and may already be sitting up by themselves. They love listening to different sounds and may be knocking things together. Some great toys for 6-month-olds that may help with their development are:
- Action/reaction toys — These toys react when your baby plays with them. They might rattle, squeak, flash lights, move, etc. They help with your baby's cognitive development. Some of the best action/reaction toys for 6-month-old babies are squeaky toys, plastic keys in a ring, stuffed animals, cars, and toys with buttons that play a recording.
- Toys that motivate crawling — Most crawl toys for your 6-month-old baby are colorful and cushy, with lights, sound, or movement. They help develop your baby's motor skills and encourage mobility and tummy time. Some toys for 6-month-old babies that motivate crawling are battery-operated walking dogs, toys with wheels, and rolling toys that your baby can sit on.
- Push toys — Push toys are very entertaining and may also motivate your 6-month-old baby to move around. These toys help develop your baby's motor skills and keep them engaged, improving their cognitive development. Balls and anything with wheels will work great!
- Balls — Your baby probably loves playing with balls of all sorts. They can motivate your baby to crawl and will help develop their motor skills. Balls with lights, bells, or rattles inside, and rubber balls that bounce are all great. Make sure the balls — and all toys — are too large to be swallowed.
- Activity gyms — Activity gyms provide a lot of visual and tactile stimulation. When your child reaches for and swats the toys, it helps develop their motor skills. They also get to experiment with different types of toys and movement. There are a variety of activity gym types to choose from.
Some toys to help 6-month-old babies learn are:
- Stacking toys — By playing with stacking toys, your baby learns problem-solving skills and develops fine and gross motor skills. It also develops their creativity. You can offer your 6-month-old baby stacking blocks or rings.
- Role-playing toys — These toys help your child imitate or copy the actions of everyday life. They help your child understand the world and develop their hand-eye coordination. They also help build their self-confidence. Some examples of role-playing toys for 6-month-old babies are lightweight phones and hammers.
- Soft toys — Stuffed toys are excellent for helping your baby learn to soothe themselves at night and fall asleep. Stuffed toys and dolls are available in a wide variety of textures that provide an excellent sensory experience. Whether it's a stuffed animal, soft book, or doll, make sure it's washable!
- Flashing and noisy toys — Toys that produce lights and noise may be fun for your little one. These toys help your baby learn the relationship between cause and effect. As they experiment with a reactive toy, your baby will notice how certain actions produce certain effects. Some great interactive toys for 6-month-old babies are rattles, balls with bells inside, and toys with buttons that make sounds.
- Blocks — Big, soft blocks are best for your baby at 6 months old. They help teach your baby hand-eye coordination, build their focus, and develop their problem-solving skills. You can try blocks made of fabric and large, colorful dominos.
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What is a good 6-month-old baby toy?
Six-month-old babies are fascinated by sounds, simple visuals, and movement. At this age, they are working on their hand-eye coordination, discovering their bodies, grasping, and reaching. A good 6-month-old baby toy may include the following features:
- Sound — Until your baby's eyesight develops fully, they will use sound to sense the location of an object. Some of the best toys for 6-month-old babies have sound such as wind chimes, mobiles, and rattles.
- High-contrast patterns and bright colors — Toys that have high-contrast patterns help your infant pick out differences in patterns and shapes during the early months. As they get older, they may love toys that are brightly colored.
- Movement — Babies at this age are delighted by moving toys. This is because their eyesight is still improving, and it's easier to see things that move.
- Dangling toys — When your baby can't yet sit up, toys that dangle from above provide a lot of fun. When your baby reaches for the toys, it also helps develop their grasping skills.
- Toys with different textures — Fabric books or toys with various textures are excellent for exploring. They also stimulate your baby's senses.
How to choose a safe toy for a 6-month-old
When choosing a safe 6-month-old baby toy:
- Pay attention to the recommended age listed on the toys. Choose one that fits your child's skill level and age.
- Pick toys that are colorful and lightweight. They shouldn't have any toxic materials or paint. Babies at this age are exploring the world with their mouth!
- Avoid small removable parts such as noses and eyes on stuffed animals.
- Make sure that the toys don't have any sharp edges or materials that may injure your baby (such as metal or glass).
- Discard any plastic wrapping right away to prevent choking.
- Keep toys with cords or strings out of the crib when your baby is sleeping or unsupervised.
Toys are for fun, but they should also be safe, stimulating, and age appropriate. At 6 months old, your baby is growing very fast. By providing them with toys specially designed for 6-month-olds, you can help them develop and learn.
Some great toys for 6-month-old babies include action/reaction toys, toys that motivate crawling, balls, push toys, and activity gyms. Some toys for 6-month-old babies that help them learn are stacking toys, role-playing toys, soft toys, flashing and noisy toys, and building blocks.
Choose a safe 6-month-old baby toy according to your child's skill level and age. Stay close by and keep an eye on your baby while they are playing with their toys. You'll probably want to join in too!