Mom Looking for Educational Toys

Updated on March 02, 2009
J.W. asks from Florence, SC
12 answers

Does anybody know of any GREAT educational toys I can get for my son? I'm looking for things I can work with him on his colors, shapes etc. He's only 10 months old. I just want to start introducing him to these things--showing him colors, shapes etc. Thanks for your help in advance!

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all these great ideas ya'll! I LOVE the $1 store idea--I'm there ALL the time and never thought about that! I will check out everything you all posted--don't want to over due it with him and I do spend LOTS of one on one time with him--just thought we could try learning something during those times--can't hurt! Thanks for all your posts!

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answers from Savannah on

I used aa variety of educational toys. Stemming from simple toys such as; building blocks, ring stackers, and pop-up books to stimulate my daughters mind, to more technical toys, such as leap frog, and V-tech products that went as far as to teach basic letters, shapes and colors. Doing this helped my daugter to learn how to read by the age of two.

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answers from Spartanburg on

My kids have tons of toys but the price you pay for toys that are specifically labled educational are outrageous! We , to people who aren't used to it, sound silly around our house. EVERYTHING we do we point out colors or shapes... Get the red ball, or let's put your shoe on your right foot, put the car in the box and out of the box.... I also made place mats with construction paper and made a bunch of shapes and pasted them to the paper... We had it laminated and use that with cheerios to play a game while I am getting their meal together. I will place the cereal on a shape and tell him your food is on a heart...can you put it on the circle. If he doesn't get it right I move it to the circle and do it again. Your food is on the circle can you put it on the heart.... Reiterating what shape you started with.
Just a few ideas but remember you can teach them much more than an expensive toy can!



answers from Augusta on

I'd have to disagree with the one mom that said no videos before age 3. My daughter is 7 yrs old and gifted and was watching videos from the time that she was an infant. She was a very high needs, colicky baby and one way I was able to get a little sleep finally was lay own on the couch with her on my chest and turn on 101 Dalmatians and she calmed down and watched the black and white and movement and finally fell asleep. Anyway , as far as toys, go to the baby toy asile at Target and just look around, there are a lot of learning toys. The simple ones are the best ones. I'm a bit skeptical about these toys that try to teach babies the alphabet , these are babies let um act like babies. They can learn from everyday play more than trying to make them learn facts , problem solving is more important than facts. Look at board books and stacking toys, blocks etc.



answers from Atlanta on

The best on the market in my opinion are the Melissa and Doug puzzles. They're well made by a company that has had NO RECALLS which Fischer Price has had, and they have excellent quality control in their company, so are unlikely to let slip through anything that is not up to standards for the safety of your child. They have several puzzles made just for the younger child, big knobs for them to hold onto, and more than one puzzle features colors and shapes. They even have sound puzzles. They are affordable, made of good wood and are the favorites of many young mothers. They also offer shape-fitting wood toys in various forms. You can find them online at different stores, as well as in other retail stores.



answers from Atlanta on

Call me old fashioned, but my favorite toys are the standards. Fisher-Price still produces the stacking "doughnuts" that we all played with as children that develops eye hand coordination as well as learning colors. Another one of my favorites (as it was for my boys) is the sphere with the different shaped cut outs that children slide the shapes into. Sometimes the reason these toys have been around so long is that they're just plain GOOD toys. No bells and whistles, but fun toys with educational value. They're also still very reasonably priced.

Hope this helps.

K. in GA



answers from Florence on

I like the Melissa and Doug toys as well as your classics (shape sorter, ring stacker, etc) but one of my son's favorites is a stuffed frog made by Leapfrog. He sings five or six different songs and teaches colors and shapes. He's been playing with this toy from about 1 year to now (he's 2 1/2).



answers from Atlanta on

My son is a little older (20 months) but we recently went to the dollar store and went to the teachers isle. They hace all kinds of flashcards, charts etc... If you are a SAHM it is a great way to have some "school like" lessons before pre-school. My son loves it and we only spent about $6!!!
Another place is They have some awesome flashcards with textures and I started with my son around his first b-day. He knows all the cards now and has fun when we sit down with them.
Like other ladies said, Melissa and Doug is good too. You can actually find some of the toys at Kohls and sometimes they will be 40% off and if you have a kohls card you can get additional discounts. Kohls is much cheaper for these than Learning Express etc..
Hope these ideas help :)



answers from Augusta on

At 10 months absolutely everything is an educational toy. At that age they are learning constantly, no matter what they're playing with. If you spend a little time pointing out things like colors while he play, that's what he needs. Toys that are specifically "educational" are generally expensive. Forget them and let your little one explore.

I would particularly steer clear of media-type things (computer games, videos). Any passive entertainment before the age of 3 wires kids brains differently. Creativity and the ability to attend are compromised and you run the risk of your child being ADD. They're even saying that "Baby Einstein" and "leapster" are bad for kids. In fact, the more low-tech at this age, the better.

Don't stress too much over it. Let your child play, give him a little time with you and a little time by himself. Self-guided play is the best way to develope creative thinking skills.



answers from Atlanta on

Discover Toys are the best! My sons are now 19 and 14, but these are timeless and will last forever. Just google to find a representative in your area.



answers from Charleston on

The best thing I have ever used to educate my child was a gift that my husband bought for ME! It's my Cricut. I'm a scrapbooker and I've learned to use my scrapping tools to educate my daughter. I use my cricut to cut out shapes and the alphabet. She has a lot of fun waiting for the letter to cut and once it's done, she can touch it and she has much better retention with their names since she can hold them. She even gets to color them for her "art". She's two, knows the alphabet...counts to 25...and can name all of the animals at the zoo. The coolest thing? She's been doing it all since she was 1 and a half and my Cricut helped! We have a lot educational toys, most of them expensive. But mostly? She likes the cut out shapes and numbers we've made with the Cricut. When she gets bored with a cartridge, I buy another one. I've learned that the best learning tool for her is to be very interactive and spend quality time with her.



answers from Atlanta on

J. - I'd recommend you take a look at Discovery Toys, the premiere educational toy company. Like HOmemade Gourmet, we are a home-based business. We are in our 30th year and I've been with the company for over 28 years. Our products are not sold in stores, they are unconditionally guaranteed for safety and durability, and they are loaded with educational play value. Check out my website at (be sure to spell it right!) to see our product line and learn more about DT. If you'd like a hard copy catalog, I'd be happy to mail you one if you provide your mailing address. I'd also be happy to give you specific recommendations.

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