As a mom of two girls, I must say there is something extremely annoying with useless toy gifts that kids get for Christmas or birthdays. There are numerous ideas for non-toy gifts for 1 year old, don’t you agree? Stuffing your kid’s room with too many plush animals, and plastic toys aren’t doing any good to you or your baby. So if you are a parent, a friend, or a grandparent, here are some great useful gift ideas for 1-year-olds.
Too Many Toys Syndrome
There are many studies that claim playing with fewer toys will lead to a higher quality of play for toddlers. With fewer toys, kids are playing longer and use their imagination to play with a single toy in a greater variety of ways. Fewer toys support children’s development and promote healthy play.
Here is a study on too many toys syndrome.
Non-Toy Gifts for 1-Year-Olds
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1. Board Books
My mom bought my daughter numerous board books when she was 1 year old. To learn colors, shapes, letters, numbers, and new words. I remember we went through them so many times, she couldn’t get enough of them. It is important to read to our kids and make them fall in love with books from the earliest age.
2. Art Set
Non-toxic crayons, watercolors, washable coloring pens, finger painting sets, or paper blocks are always a gift you can’t go wrong with. It is something that is used frequently and always in need of a new stash. Let them color and use their imagination. Creativity is mostly encouraged through coloring in young kids! Let them get all messy.
3. Coloring Book
Drawing and coloring are important activities for 1-year-olds. Focus the activity on creative expression. It will seem more like some scribbling, but ask your kid what he drew, and you will be amazed by what they say. That is when they learn to speak of course. My daughter was a year and a half old when she drew something and said, Coco! That was her word for a crocodile. You should see my daughter’s first coloring book and what a mess it was, but she loved it!
4. Colorful Water Bottle
A water bottle or a straw cup is a great useful gift for a small child. As a mom, I know there is never enough of those, and you can’t go wrong with it.
5. CD Player
My girls loved music. There is nothing sweeter than seeing those diaper bumps dancing while listening to some favorite kids’ songs. So a nice kid-themed cd player is something they will use for years.
6. Kids CD`s
Can’t go wrong with famous kids’ songs on a CD. I remember my daughter listened to one Christmas song CD over and over again. The house was full of joy and dancing! It also helps their development, coordination, and word learning.
7. Portable Feeding Chair
This one will be useful to parents and the kid. I remember we had one of those and carried it with us if we went to grandma’s or to see friends. It was always handy to have a portable chair.
8. Wooden Block Games
It is perfect for kids to learn shapes and use their little fingers to place a shape into the right hole.
9. Diaper Changing Pad
A changing pad is used quite often with one-year-olds. And by the time it has 12 months, I am sure mom and the kid would love a new color-changing mat.
10. A Bath Robe
Aren`t kids adorable in those small bathrobes? I believe it is a very useful gift idea for toddlers. Make sure you buy cotton robes that are best for their sensitive skin.
11. A Meal Set
Sometimes we need to make plates and kids’ dishes amusing to make picky eaters eat. So a fun plate, a fork, and a spoon are great options for a toddler’s non-toy gift idea.
11. Soft Slippers
I know all studies say that soft slippers are the best choice for kids developing feet. There are so many wonderful designs for kids that you can find. They can be as a sock with leather soles, or all leather slippers, for comfortable walking around the home.
12. A Costume
Get them a favorite character costume! I remember my daughter got her Elsa dress that she didn’t take off until she was two. It’s a fun dress-up and role-play gift that is surely going to be used frequently.
13. Rain boots
Maybe you aren’t aware of the benefits of puddle jumping. It’s an exciting activity that helps them develop large muscles in the legs, work gross motor skills, and use their brain with measurement, estimation, and spatial awareness skills. So besides all the fun, it is quite useful too! We mostly love Hatley rain boots, they are the softest I could find, amazing!
14. A Back Pack
A small backpack appropriate for their age is a great gift! We got a puppy backpack that my daughter carried everywhere. I find this a great non-toy gift for kids.
Soft sole shoes are always a useful gift every parent will appreciate. Be sure to talk to the child’s parents and get the sizing right. We loved Bobux and Robeez brands while my kids were toddlers.
As shoes, clothes are also one of the best buys for small kids. Just try and be different, and buy something parents would never buy, something extraordinary. I don’t mean expensive, just something different that will make a kid smile.
17. Educational Puzzle for 1-year-olds
Finding where one piece is fitted into a hole is an amazing game for their motor skill development. Go for wooden ones because they will be in their mouth more than you think, LOL.
18. Stacking Boxes
It’s for example – 5 wooden boxes that kids need to nest together. It is a great educative non toy gift for toddlers’ creativity.
19. Bath Visor for Kids
As I have written before a bath visor is a great way to soothe kids who hate hair washing. Find more advice for kids’ hairwashing on my site.
20. Make a Photo Book
I know it takes a bit of time to make a photo book, but this is such a personal, and thoughtful gift for a toddler. Something he will hold on to for life. We always keep our memories and try to regularly make photo books.
- Don’t allow your kid to get used to too many toys. Try to avoid overstuffing their play space. The more they have, the less they play. Let them learn from their youngest age that clothes, bed sheets, or chocolate are also gifts. Teach them to be grateful for what they have.
- Declutter their toy space every once in a while. When they didn’t touch a toy for a month or two, either put it away for a more appropriate time or just donate it to someone who`s in need. Hope you liked our non-toy gifts for 1-year-old, and that they will come in handy.
- I chose all these gifts in my own opinion, and what I wish my kid got for her birthday. So if you are a friend, a parent, or a grandma and wonder what to buy that’s not a toy, you won’t make a mistake with this list.
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