Like many, I’ve been on the hunt for the most enjoyable toddler Christmas gifts for 2022. So I’m sharing what I’ve found for my almost 2 year old and my 3 year old this season – see anything you love? Download this shoppable PDF Gift Guide!
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My goal in Christmas shopping and gift giving this year is to be sure I’m not purchasing things that will just become clutter. If I’m not sure it will be well used and well loved I’m not buying it.
And as moms we also have to take ourselves, our schedule and availability, and our sanity into account. So I won’t be buying things that require intent supervision, lots of constant assistance, or that will be bothersome and tedious for me to see and hear.
The items you’ll find on this list are mainly for girls or for all children, as I don’t have any little boys to shop for except my nephews who are not toddlers. I’ll also be keeping it fairly minimal so it isn’t overwhelming (can you say decision fatigue in the holiday season?) and because I want to stay true to how I search for and buy gifts – with a nod to minimalism.
Toddler Christmas Gifts for Family Time Fun
Candyland is a classic, imaginative, children’s game. With silly characters and a fairytale-like storyline, the enjoyment the kids have is contagious and parents or older kids are bound to enjoy themselves too!
Chutes and Ladders is a game with a simple premise, easy instructions, and endless fun as little kids learn to enjoy their first family night board games.
I recently remembered how much fun we had as kids playing Hi Ho Cherry-O! Who knew collecting apples and learning counting could be so much fun for toddlers. Just don’t tell them they’re learning while they’re at it.
Nit only are memory matching games a lot of fun and great for brain development, they can also be played solo without requiring supervision, which takes this fun game night experience to a new level in my book!
Toddler Christmas Gifts for Independent Play or with Friends and Siblings
We love these water painting books because they keep the kids occupied and feeling creative in a way that doesn’t require much supervision like real paint would. They also travel well so they’ve worked great for long road trips and overnight stays when bringing something they love but doesn’t make a mess is essential.
We’ve never had these reusable sticker books but my girls love stickers and since these are designed to be reused, they aren’t permanent (goodbye sticker messes!) and we think they’ll be a great alternative to regular stickers.
We’ve always had the magnetic style drawing pads and the girls enjoy those. What I like about these is they are a lot more precise and you actually have to make contact with the drawing pad in order to make a mark, so the precision of the girls’ pictures will be a lot higher.
We love to encourage our girls in their imaginative endeavors so getting dress up items for our toddlers for Christmas gifts seemed like a no-brainer. They’re really into pretending to be princesses, moms, and “Mama Mary” lately, so this is just the beginning of the dress up options we’ll be encouraging.
We’ve had a toy kitchen for the girls for some time and just a few food and kitchen items. It’s time for them to have some more realistic toy food and cooking utensils to help make the experience more realistic for them. This is something we know they will play with every single day if given the option, so we really can’t go wrong with this as a toddler gift for Christmas this year.
Toddler Christmas Gifts for Developmental Play
Maybe this is a “mom gift” but as we start teaching our oldest daughter to read and spell, these alphabet beads will be so fun to help her make words. All we need is some yarn and a yarn needle and they’ll be off to the races.
These are fun for several reasons. Partly the girls love to play with anything magnetic, and it gives them something they can do at the fridge in the kitchen without being underfoot. But we can also begin to work on reading and phonics skills, as well as counting and number recognition. Okay, so I’m a nerd mom, but I swear my kids will enjoy these!
Last Christmas we gave the girls a single set of magna-tiles for Christmas and they used them throughout the year and have gotten even more into building different shapes and buildings from them recently, so adding to their collection will make them very happy.
This might be the most basic children’s toy ever, but it is a huge deal for fine motor skills to help with stacking, balancing, and arranging. They can also learn with counting, color sorting, shape sorting, and a number of other developmental milestones, especially for my almost-2-year-old.
Play Cleaning Set (Functional)
This is a toy and a tool at the same time. Win-win! My girls love to try to help with cleaning but this toy will help them learn the coordination to use tools that are smaller and more appropriate for their size. It will go nicely with their toy kitchen and I can’t wait to watch them enjoy it and learn to clean up after themselves more independently!
I remember using these toys as a child. They’re great for learning to match shapes to the correct ones and create a picture out of a composite of smaller elements or pieces. We also used to make up our own pictures with the pieces after we got the hang of the game, and we spent hours enjoying these simple toys. This is both a developmental toy and also great for independent play and learning.
Eventually we want to have a real piano for the girls to learn to play, but in the mean time this would be a way to introduce them to the instrument while they’re small. A keyboard like this fits our home easily and can be put away when necessary, but can also be a source of endless hours of musical fun. Plus, a volume control is everything.
Christmas Gift Storage and Organization
These items are self explanatory – once you buy items for your kids the best way to avoid hating them all (the toys, not the kids) and regretting having purchased them is to have adequate storage for them! It is especially helpful to have storage that the kids can use on their own to put toys, sets, and games away all by themselves after they’ve been shown how to do it. This makes the whole Christmas gifting experience so much more enjoyable for everyone, and helps the toys last further into the year without getting lost, broken, or donated to Goodwill.
Toy Storage Stackable Tupperware
Which of these toys are your favorite? What toddler Christmas gifts are you grabbing this year? What will go in stockings and what will go under your tree?