What Are 3 Year Old Girls Favorite Birthday Gift/toys Vs. What Advertisers Say?

Updated on June 26, 2011
K.M. asks from Encinitas, CA
23 answers

Our dd is turning 3 in 3 weeks and we needed ideas on what 3 year old girls REALLY like vs. what advertisers would have us believe and spend money on!!

What's your 3 year olds favorite toys and activities?

Thanks so much

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answers from Topeka on

Baby Dolls with baby changing accesories~feeding~clothing
Magna Doodle~Play Doh with their accesories~Sit N Spin~Bike with training wheels~Books~Play Tent~Play Kitchen with added fake foods cups plates~Pillow Pets~Barbie dolls~Princess dress up out fits.I'm just going off what I have here at my house & what she is wanting for Christmas.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

my 3 yr old loves her play kitchen, her babies and their blankets, and she has a plastic princess castle, i think it is fisher price. she also likes bigger cars, specically the Chevron cars.

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answers from Honolulu on

3 year olds... like to pretend play.... or pretend tea parties or pretend cooking... or princess things.
Most 3 year old girls, like dolls.

Just go by YOUR daughter's interests.... not what the tv commercials say.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

My daughter loves dollhouses! She will be three this weekend. She has a Dora dollhouse and a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. She plays with them all the time! She also loves dress-up and playing kitchen/tea party. Anything that she can use to pretend. She also loves her treasure chest where she puts bottle caps, coins, strings and anything she finds interesting. :) She loves the Melissa and Doug lacing cards and lacing beads.


answers from Chicago on

My daughter LOVES Disney Princesses (I took her the ice show at 2.5 and she cannot stop talking about it). She loves her Disney Princess barbies and her disney princess books (she loves to "read"). She turned 3 in mid-July. She also loves princess dominos, puzzles, and drawing/painting. You need to find what makes your kid "tick" and capitalize on it. She LOVES to ride her bike with training wheels too but that isn't a winter option for us here in Chicago :) California you probably can. She would prefer to be on that bike rather than anywhere else.

Have a great 3rd Birthday Party!



answers from Los Angeles on

Everyone here is 100% right.
I have twin 3 year olds- 3 this past June. We have the kitchen (huge hit).
I just thought I'd add if you were interested in something tech-y we got the Mobigo vtech touch learning system and we love it. Our kids are going to be a tech generation and watching her navigate the games (which learn WITH them and increase difficulty as they succeed) is amazing to me. It comes with a few learning games and we bought the Dora game. I like the system, and it's not too pricey.


answers from Los Angeles on

Kitchen w/ food and pots and pans, for sure. Cash register, Parents makes a great one. Doll house. Baby doll w/ stroller, crib, high chair. Playhouse. As others have said, lots of role playing.



answers from San Diego on

Hello, There are many electronic devices out there and many "fad" toys. What I have found is that little children love to dress up. Costco has a toy chest full of dress up outfits. You might think about that. Then maybe a dressing table or some other piece of furniture which she can use with her dress up clothes. Every little girl loves to be a Princess.
Also, most children love art. You can go with an easel, paints, crayons, chalk, markers, etc.
Good luck with your precious little girl.
K. K.



answers from Honolulu on

Bubbles, Tricycle, ball games.



answers from Los Angeles on

One of my children's favorite activities at that age, and for several years afterwards was "dress up." For my granddaughter at about that age, I went to Good-Will and bought some formals, petticoats, sparkly jewelry, and did a little quick altering and combining and came up with things like a "wedding dress," "royal" clothing, etc. You could decorate some sort of sturdy box for it. Be sure there is enough clothing so a friend can join in the fun.

Over the years, we added parts of Halloween costumes, capes, purses, etc, and both boys and girls in my neighborhood used our dres up box for creative play and later to make up plays which they invited the parents to watch.

Of course many little girls also like baby dolls that they can feed bottles to, push in a small stroller, etc. with clothes that are easy for small fingers to take on and off. Plastic dishes are good for tea parties. My children and grandchildren like to paint and draw, so an easel with big crayons and markers and sheets of newsprint for drawing is usually fun.

I would always emphasize toys that invite interaction and creative play. Our house was always a center for neighborhood activity because we had our garage outfitted with tack board and a tray on one wall, with lots of art materials and the aforementioned dress up things. By the way, if there are older children in the family, the smaller children love to play school, and we had a couple of old classroom desks and a blackboard with chalk as well. (I know blackboards have been replaced with whiteboards, so that would work too.)

So often, I see these expensive plastic toys, and after a few tries they are dismantled and discarded. By the way, not just boys, but girls as well, like building toys like legos, tinker toys, Lincoln logs, although to many of them, a doll house with an open side and furniture to arrange might be a great "building" toy.

S. Toji



answers from Spartanburg on

My oldest justed turned 4 last month. I have been sitting here thinking about everything she was REALLY excited about over the last year and here is my list:

Bike and scooter (this is at the TOP of the list)

Pretend clothes like gloves/vests/belts/scarves/bags/hats/my old girl scout uniform - anything to play dress up in but I found that my kids would rather put on real clothing items than the cinderella dress/fairy outfit

Board/card games/puzzles
We like Goodnight Moon game, Eye Spy, Memory (you would be surprised how well a 3 yr old can play this one! at least I was!) Of course, Candy Land

Makeup/finger nail polish

Pretend kitchen/food

Musical insturments/microphone

Have fun shopping!



answers from San Diego on

My daughter just turned 3, and likes pretty much the same things that the other moms have mentioned. Just the basics: dolls, dress-up clothes, legos, playdoh, balloons, digging in the dirt, stickers, coloring, pretend food / cooking stuff, books, musical instruments. The fancy stuff never seems to hold my kids interest as much as the classic toys where the child can be creative and play with it in lots of ways. P.S. My 3-yo dd LOVES her scooter. That might be a good investment for a b-day present.



answers from San Diego on

At 3 my daughter loved barbies, from age 3 to age 5 she played with her barbies and her barbie dream house everyday. J.


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answers from Dallas on

If she doesn't alredy have a play kitchen I'd say go with that. We actually got my son one for his second birthday and it still gets played with at least every other day, he will be 5 in December. When friends come over they all end up playing with it too. It was the best money we ever spent on a gift for him.



answers from Dallas on

My 3 year old niece LOVES kitchen play and dollhouses. Her favorite toy, is a barn toy. It opens and has a fence and all the barn animals.



answers from St. Louis on

I got my daughter a scooter when she turned 3; she's 4 1/2 now and still loves it. A doodle pad is another favorite.



answers from San Francisco on

every kid is different so like what others have said - go with things that YOUR daughter is interested in (when my twin daughters were 3 - one of them loved girly-girl dress up clothes and her sister preferred toy trucks and construction equipment - one year DD1 wore her cinderella dress-up dress for halloween and DD2 wore her Bob the Builder hard hat and tool belt!)

generally, pretend play (e.g. toy dishes and play food) and basic art supplies are safe choices for that age range IMO



answers from Kansas City on

My 3 year old loves to play Go Fish and other card games. She loves her trike, bike, and Cozy Coupe. She just turned 3 a few weeks ago and got a Snow White vacuum cleaner and she LOVES it! As others mentioned, pretend play is a big thing right now...my girl also loves dress up clothes, tea sets, her play kitchen and absolutley loves baby dolls and strollers.

Fisher Price makes an adorable doll stroller that looks so real, but still very kiddish. It was only like $25 or something and she got it for her 2nd birthday but still plays with it all the time. That and the vacuum are the favorite toys when others come over for a play date.



answers from Minneapolis on

The game Zingo is a great game for that age. Also, Hullabuloo (the one with the animal DVD Game).


answers from Los Angeles on

my 3 yr old dd loved any make believe or pretending toy.
such as:
play food
dolls (including barbie, but i must advise to stay away from brats, those things are disturbing, i mean barbie was bad enough!)
doll house
Pretend cleaning supplies

It also really depends on the individual kid!



answers from San Diego on

My 3 yo daughters favorite toys are in this order:

1- her Barbie 3 wheeled scooter, she rides that thing every where from the day she turned 3 (shes now 3.5 years old). I have to keep in the van at all times because she wants to ride it whenever we go to the park which is about 3 times a week.

2- Her little stuffed animals. A couple of kittys, bunnies, and a few Hello Kitty's.

3- Her princess dress up stuff, including all the girlie accessories.

4- legos, brinco blocks...she plays with these even more than her 5 yo brother does.



answers from Los Angeles on

Role play stuff- my daughter LOVES her kitchen, play food, and cash register. She uses it to play store, kitchen, and restaurant. Lately she has also started playing library and school, using a chair in front of our couch as a car that she drives (she even buckles me in).

More than anything, your daughter will enjoy something she can do WITH YOU. My daughter is great at independent play, but every day says, "I want to play _____ with YOU." And most recently her favorite game is hide and seek.

So choose something you'll enjoy doing with her. Having time with Mama is the best gift of all.

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