Montessori-Inspired: 15 Best Toys for 18 Month Olds at IKEA
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The best toys for 18 month olds. Where to start? So you did your research and have decided you want to curate a couple of toys for your little one. However, you are finding that some cost quite a bit moolah and the process of curating toys can at times be a bit overwhelming. Especially when you’re trying to go the Montessori way.
At the age of 18 months, children are intrigued by the world around them. They like to explore and discover things. Certain type toys provide a great opportunity for them to learn and grow while having fun. Here you’ll find a list of the best toys for 18 month old littles that you can find at Ikea. Each of these toys has been carefully selected for their ability to promote learning, development, and overall fun. And not only are they are the more affordable side, a good number are Montessori-approved. I’m sure you’ll find something applicable for every developmental stage in your child’s life.
Best Toys for 18 Month Olds
- Stacking rings
- Stacking and nesting cups
- Children’s tent
- Musical toy
- Soft soccer ball
- Wooden building block set
- Toy hammering block
- Play tunnel
- Train set with track
- Shape sorter
- Mala easel
- Play kitchen
- Garage with toy truck
- Doll bed
Keep scrolling to check them out and read more about them.
Here are the Top Best Ikea Toys
1. Uppsta Stacking Rings
Stacking rings are such a classic and for good reason! The simple design helps children to develop hand-eye coordination and critical thinking skills. Not only that, they develop other areas such as concentration, persistence, and fine motor skills as they play and move the rings while using their eye to keep track of where each ring needs to go.
Moreover, as they stack each ring in the correct order, they learn about size and dimension which help with their early math skills. In a Montessori environment, stacking rings help children learn about order, size, and sequence, which are all very important building blocks for learning and development. I would even go as far to say that this is on the top must haves for a child.
2. Uppsta Stacking and Nesting cups
Another classic toy. These stacking and nesting cups promote the development of fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination as little ones stack the cups in order from largest to smallest then nesting them back together again. They can also be used for pouring and transferring liquids.
Moreover, as they stack the cups, your little one will learn about size, dimension, and order as they begin to understand different shapes and sizes. This plays a very important part in cognitive development.
In a Montessori environment, stack and nest cups help children learn about cause and effect, as they see how their actions affect the cups. This toy also promotes independence, as children can play with it on their own and experience a sense of accomplishment when they successfully stack and nest the cups.
3. Cirkustalt Children’s Tent
This super cute tent will provide a private space for your little one to play, imagine, and explore. Littles can crawl inside and play with toys, or use it to relax and have some quiet time.
Exploring the tent and crawling in and out of it helps to develop gross motor skills, as well as their balance and coordination. Additionally, it’s a piece what will grow with your child beyond the toddler years as they could eventually use it as a space for imaginative play and exploration, or a place to read a box.
4. Kappa Musical Toy Caterpillar
This little cutie caterpillar can help to develop your children’s musical skills and sense of rhythm. Just gently pull at it and it will play a sweet little tune. Your child will look to see where the tune is come from and in turn they are developing listening skills by distinguishing between different sounds and recognize patterns in the music.
It’s a cute toy to encourage a love of music that you can take with on outings.
5. Sparka Soft Soccer ball
A soft soccer ball makes a great introductory toy before upgrading. You no longer have to worry about your little ones getting hurt nor breaking something around the house as a soft textured soccer ball makes it safe for a child to play with. This toy will help promote gross motor development and coordination as your child practices kicking and rolling the ball.
It is also a fun and active form of play for your little one which will simultaneously building their independence and confidence, as they slowly gain mastery over their own bodies. Moreover, a ball promotes the development of social skills as they learn to play, share, and take turns with others.
Ikea even has a ball storage/goal that you can pair along with this toy.
6. Underhalla Wooden Building Block Set
One of the best IKEA/Montessori toys for 18 month olds. Building blocks are a staple and timeless pick in any child’s toy collection that never goes out of style. They promote creativity, imagination, fine motor skills, and spacial awareness. This type of play is important for your child’s cognitive development, as it helps them to understand spatial relationships and cause and effect.
This toy also promotes independence. As they tear down and build their structures back up, children experience a sense of accomplishment when they successfully build something on their own. It’s definitely one of the best open-ended toys.
7. Uppsta Toy Hammering Block
A toy hammering block is a toy that provides an opportunity for your child to develop hand-eye coordination as they learn to coordinate their movements and aim for the pegs.
Little ones can use the hammer to pound the pegs into the block, which will help develop their dexterity, coordination, concentration and persistence as they work to complete the task. In addition, this toy encourages and introduces a children to explore cause and effect. Meaning, they learn that their actions have a result.
8. Busa Play Tunnel
This play tunnel is personally one we had at home and children played with it on endless occasions. It provides a space for children to play, explore, and use their imagination. Children can crawl through the tunnel, play hide and seek, or simply enjoy the sensation of crawling through a space over and over again. These play tunnels are also great for promoting gross motor skills and physical coordination, as children work to balance and crawl through the tunnel.
You can even connect multiple together to make the experience even more engaging. Such a simple toy that little ones will love. It also easily fold ups, making it an easy toy to store when needed. Definitely one of the best toys for 18 month olds when they’re at such a young age.
9. Lillabo Train Set with Track
A wooden train set. A toy that will keep your child entertained for quite a while. They can use the tracks to create different routes and layouts, which will help develop their creativity and problem-solving skills. I usually recommend at least getting two sets of these as your child grows older. This why they have more layout options are aren’t limited to a few.
You’ll little one will pick up skills as as they work to assemble the track and make push the train along the track. This promotes a sense of order and organization, as children learn to follow instructions and create a functioning system.
10. Uppsta Shape Sorter
This super cute shape sorter is a simple toy for promoting shape recognition and sorting skills. By fitting the shapes into the correct openings, children develop their hand-eye coordination, dexterity, and problem-solving skills. It also promotes concentration and persistence as children work to complete the task.
This type of play is also important for your child’s cognitive development, as it helps to build their understanding of basic shapes, spatial relationships, and cause and effect.
11. Mala Easel
An easel is a wonderful and one of the best toys for 18 month olds and older. Children can use the easel to draw, paint, and create. In a Montessori environment, easels children explore their creativity as they draw and create their own works of art.
This type of play helps to build their understanding of color, texture, and spatial relationships. Not only that, grown ups can also use this versatile piece for teaching sessions as it has a chalk board on one side and a whiteboard surface on the other.
12. Duktig Play Kitchen
This is a popular one among kids and parents. In fact, this is the top 18 month old gift is all over social media. You can set it out as-is or even customize this play kitchen. It allows children to mimic the adult world and develop their independence as they practice their social and life skills by pretending to cook and serve food. It also helps children develop their sense of order as they learn to organize the kitchen and its accessories.
13. Lillabo Garage with Toy Truck
Allow your child to tap into their imagination with toy garage. The garage comes with a tow truck and it provides endless opportunities for imaginative play. Children can pretend to drive the truck, fill up at the gas pump, park it, and repair their vehicles in the garage. It helps children develop their hand-eye coordination as they manipulate the small parts and vehicles.
14. Underhalla Abacus
A toy that will grow with your child. The abacus is a simple toy that is great for developing fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination as you children move the beads around during their toddler years. As your child grows, it an effective tool that can help children learn basic math concepts. He or she can practice counting, adding, and subtracting using the beads on the abacus.
15. Duktig Doll Bed
This doll bed is a simple toy for children to practice their nurturing skills. Children can pretend to tuck their dolls into bed, read them stories, and care for them in other ways.
This toy also helps children develop their sense of order as they learn to make the bed and clean up after playtime. In Montessori, the doll bed aligns with the value of Grace and Courtesy, which focuses on then development of social skills and manners.
In conclusion, children are in a stage of exploration and discovery and are fascinated by the world around them. This makes playtime essential for their development. The toys recommended in this post, available at IKEA, promote learning and growth while being fun for children. Stacking rings, building blocks, spare sorters, and easels align with important Montessori values and will help promote fine motor skills, independence, creativity, hand-eye coordination, problem-solving skills, and much more.
With these top 15 best toys for 18 month olds, you can feel confident in selecting toys that support your child’s growth and development. Choose one or several of these toys and watch as your child has fun while learning and growing. Support your child’s natural curiosity, and desire to learn.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes a toy Montessori-approved?
The quality Montessori toys are toys that most are made out of natural materials and demonstrate cause and effect. They are typically simple toys that allow them to interact, manipulate, or build with them are characteristic of Montessori Toys.
How many toys should I have out for my child?
It is best to rotate toys and not all set out to play. Having all the toys out is providing too many choices for you child, which can become overwhelming. Instead, have out at most 5 toys at a time on a shelf and allow your child to explore. This will allow them to fully interact with one toy at a time instead of jumping from one toy to the next.
And that’s it! Hope you enjoyed the best toys for 18 month old children. Even if you don’t have children, these make great gifts. Ikea should just go ahead and make some type of Ikea Montessori toys section on their website. Not only most of the are made out of natural materials they are quite affordable. Many even make great 18 month old gifts.
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