Best Toys and Gift Ideas for 2-Year-Olds 2020

Best Toys and Gift Ideas for 2-Year-Olds 2020

Two-year-olds get a bad rap for the “terrible twos,” but in reality, they’re just learning so much it’s overwhelming to them! They learn the most through play, so toys are essential. Even though two-year-olds still have many sweet babyish qualities, they’re playing in more and more big-kid ways, like pretend play, throwing and catching balls, climbing, and running.

Since two-year-olds are somewhere between babies and preschoolers, it’s hard to know which toys and gifts they’ll like. Don’t stress! We’re here to help with our list of reviews of the best toys and gift ideas for two-year-olds.

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What to Look for in Toys and Gift Ideas for 2-Year-Olds

Two-year-olds are busy, so they need toys, books, and activities that hold their attention for more than five seconds. Toddlers are also absorbing and processing new information like sponges, so toys and activities that combine fun with learning are even better. When we made our list, we looked for toys, gifts, and activities that will benefit your two-year-old’s developmental progress.

Entertaining

Toddlers are on the move, and they quickly jump from thing to thing, learning as they go. A toy or gift has to be really entertaining to capture their attention. We chose toys and gifts that are fun and entertaining enough for your toddler to want to play with them for hours. Or, if not hours, then at least for the time it takes you to drink your coffee in the morning.

Educational

At the age of two, a toddler makes so many advancements in their vocabulary, thinking and reasoning, and emotional skills. They’re looking for activities and toys that encourage role-playing, pretend play, and social skills. They’re eager to learn everything from their alphabet to shapes, and the best way for them to learn is through play.

Motor Development

Two-year-olds are continuing to work on their fine and gross motor development. Toddlers are working on fine motor skills like building with blocks, turning on a faucet, or scribbling with crayons.

When it comes to gross motor skills, toddlers can run, walk, and jump. They can throw or kick a ball, so sports are great for developing those skills. At this age, toddlers can also pull their toys along with them, so things like wagons are perfect for working on coordination.

We’ve also included the age ranges of all the toys so you can get an idea of how long your toddler will likely want to play with it. Now, time to find the perfect gift!

Top 21 Best Toys and Gift Ideas for 2-Year-Olds 2020

1. Best Overall Gift for 2-Year-Olds: Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag

Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag

Why we like it: These big, colorful blocks are perfect for little builders.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 12 months+

The Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag makes the perfect gift for the two-year-old in your life because it comes with 80 colorful blocks in their own storage bag. These blocks are the ideal size for toddlers, and they’re easy to stack and build. They’re really durable, too. You’ll have these blocks for years. What’s more, they stack with other Mega Bloks preschool sets.

Educational Benefit

Building with blocks sparks your toddler’s creativity, imagination, and problem-solving skills. You can also use the blocks to teach both colors and counting while your toddler happily builds.

Motor Development

Your toddler will love building things with these Mega Bloks, which will also develop their fine motor skills. The part they’ll love most, though, is knocking down their creation, which happens to benefit their gross motor development.

Verdict

The Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag gives toddlers 80 colorful blocks to build with. Building with blocks is not only fun, but it’s also educational and great for their motor development. The blocks can get lost easily, so it’s best to keep them in the storage bag. That’s another learning opportunity for your toddler, though! They can learn to clean up their blocks and put them away in the storage bag.

Pros

  • Bag contains 80 blocks
  • Colorful blocks are the perfect size for toddlers
  • Great for creative and imaginative play
  • Comes in a durable storage bag
  • Blocks combine with other Mega Bloks sets

Cons

  • Blocks can get lost if you don’t keep them in the bag

2. Best Electronic Book: LeapFrog Scout and Violet 100 Words Book

LeapFrog Scout and Violet 100 Words Book

Why we like it: This interactive book helps your two-year-old learn new words in a fun way.

Quick Facts

  • Age Range: 18 months+
  • Battery Requirements: 2 AA batteries (included for demo only)  

The LeapFrog Scout and Violet 100 Words Book is a colorful and entertaining way for your toddler to brush up on their vocabulary. All they have to do is touch each picture, and Scout tells them the word and fun facts. This little book is entertaining enough that your toddler can play with it by themselves or read along with you.

There are different versions of these LeapFrog interactive books, too. You can choose the Scout and Violet 100 Words Book in purple or green, or you can select the 100 Animals book in pink or green.

Educational Benefit

The 100 Words Book teaches toddlers about animals, food, colors, activities, clothes, opposites, and more. The book also plays music and sound effects so kids can learn more about each word. You can play the words in English or Spanish to encourage bilingual learning.

Motor Development

The book’s pages are thin, so it might take a few tries for toddlers to learn how to turn them. The book is sensitive to the least bit of touch, so toddlers will also need to learn to touch each picture with one finger. Both of these aspects of the books help them develop fine motor skills.

Verdict

The Scout and Violet 100 Words Book teaches your toddler age-appropriate words and facts in an entertaining and interactive way. The book is very sensitive, so if your toddler tries to touch more than one picture at a time, it says all those words. To keep from confusing your child, make sure they only touch the picture with one finger.

Pros

  • Fun to use alone or with their favorite grown-up
  • Teaches 100 different words
  • Plays sound effects, fun facts, and music
  • Increases vocabulary
  • Bilingual in English and Spanish

Cons

  • Pages are sensitive

3. Best Budget Gift: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

Why we like it: The iconic illustrations and fun word repetitions make this book a favorite of toddlers.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 2 years-5 years   

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? combines Eric Carle’s colorful, collage-like illustrations with Bill Martin, Jr.’s easy-to-remember sentences. Your toddler will quickly be able to read along with you, thanks to the book’s repetition. The sturdy board-book edition holds up well to toddler wear and tear.

Educational Benefit

Your toddler will learn about colors, animals, and work on their reading and memory skills with this fun board book.

Motor Development

The Brown Bear, Brown Bear board book is just the right size for toddlers, which makes it easier for them to turn the pages. Turning the thick pages is great for dexterity. Pointing at each animal also helps fine motor development.

Verdict

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? is a colorful book your toddler will love to read for years. The board book edition is sturdy, durable, and the perfect size for little hands. Not everyone is a fan of the collage-style illustrations, though.

Pros

  • Sturdy board book
  • Repetitive phrases
  • Colorful illustrations
  • Teaches colors and animals
  • Perfect size for little hands

Cons

  • The collage-style animal illustrations take some getting used to

4. Best Musical Gift: VTech KidiBeats Drum Set

VTech KidiBeats Drum Set

Why we like it: A volume control will keep parents’ sanity while toddlers rock out on this drum set.

Editor’s Rating:

Quick Facts

  • Age Range: 2 years-5 years   
  • Battery Requirements: 3 AA batteries (included)

For your aspiring rocker, the VTech KidiBeats Drum Set gives toddlers four different ways to play. The features you’ll love the most, though, are the volume control settings and the automatic shut-off to conserve battery life.

Educational Benefit

Following along with the lights teaches toddlers about rhythm and keeping a beat. The drums also teach counting through the Number Jams game. The Alphabeats feature teaches toddlers their ABCs, phonics, and words in a fun word game. Freestyle play is also great for learning musical rhythm and beats.

Motor Development

Using the drumsticks like a real drummer on the drums and cymbal helps develop gross motor skills in a very effective way. The coordination required is high to get the most out of the kit, so the child will be inspired to practice naturally.

Verdict

The VTech KidiBeats Drum Set is a fun, musical toy for toddlers that teaches music, rhythm, letters, and numbers. Parents will appreciate the volume control that’s hard for your toddler to get to. These drums are small, though, which is great for your two-year-old, but older kids may lose interest fast.

Pros

  • Volume control settings and automatic shut-off
  • Includes batteries and drumsticks
  • Teaches numbers, letters, and rhythm
  • Four different ways to play

Cons

  • Small size

5. Best Premium Gift for 2-Year-Olds: KidKraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table

KidKraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table

Why we like it: Your toddler can be an engineer of their own train set on this impressive table.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 24 months+

If you’re looking for a serious wow-factor gift, then the KidKraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table is perfect. Toddlers will love pushing their train set through the mountain town scenery. The set comes with 120 pieces, including trains, people, vehicles, train tracks, and various scenery pieces. The table is the perfect height for kids, and it has plenty of room for more than one kid to play together.

Parents will love that there three storage bins are included and fit underneath the table. The bins hold all the pieces from the set, or you can leave them set up. The table also has a 1 ½ inch lip around it to keep toys from falling onto the floor.

Educational Benefit

Playing with trains is excellent for pretend play and role-playing. All the different vehicles, colors, and shapes are great opportunities for learning new words and how things work.

Motor Development

Setting up the train set and playing with all the different pieces is ideal for fine motor development. Your boy or girl will be able to see how different pieces interact and use coordination to set them up in the best possible way.

Verdict

The KidKraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table have so much for toddlers and bigger kids to do that it provides hours of entertainment. We love that the table includes so many different pieces, storage bins, and keeps their toys off the floor.

Pros

  • Includes 120 pieces
  • Includes three storage bins
  • Several kids can play at one time
  • Perfect for role-playing and pretend play

Cons

  • Requires a lot of assembly

6. Best Play Kitchen: Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen

Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen

Why we like it: This play kitchen is lots of fun for toddlers and big kids alike.

Editor’s Rating:

Quick Facts

  • Age Range: 24 months-10 years
  • Battery Requirements: 2 AA batteries (not included)

Pretend play is so important for toddlers, and they especially love role-playing activities. Play kitchens like the Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen are perfect for this kind of play. The best part is they’re fun for kids to keep using well beyond the toddler years.

The Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen comes with a 24-piece accessory set, which is a great value. It comes with things like pots and pans, cooking utensils, plates and cups, and even condiments. This kitchen is super cute because it has a single-serve coffee maker with the pods and to-go coffee cup included.

It has other typical play kitchen things like a stove with a burner that makes sizzling and bubbling sounds, an oven, a microwave, a sink, and a refrigerator. What’s nice about this kitchen is it has plenty of room for storage of play food and cooking accessories with shelves and hanging hooks.

Educational Benefit

Play kitchens like the Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen are ideal for creative role-playing activities. Toddlers will also encounter many opportunities for critical thinking and problem solving as they cook up play meals. Role-playing helps kids learn better communication skills while having fun playing with their friends, siblings, or you!

Motor Development

All that cooking, cleaning, and organizing play food gives lots of opportunities for motor development. Any time they use their hands, they’re working on fine motor skills. Taking out everything they need for a big feast and packing it away again is also great training in being organized

Verdict

The Step 2 Fun with Friends Kitchen has lots of opportunities for fun pretend play with a big set of kitchen accessories and features that will keep toddlers busy for years to come. The kitchen does require quite a bit of assembly—with stickers and inserting batteries into the stovetop—but the instructions are easy to follow. Nevertheless, you’ll probably have to help.

Pros

  • Includes twenty-four kitchen accessories
  • Features a single-serve coffee maker with coffee pods
  • Stovetop sizzles and bubbles
  • Perfect for role-playing and pretend play

Cons

  • Requires a lot of assembly

7. Best Water Toy: Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table

Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table

Why we like it: Lots of activities on one water table keep toddlers busy and cool.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 24 months+

If there’s one thing toddlers love, it’s water. The Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table gives toddlers lots of fun things to do with water that doesn’t involve spilling it all over your floor.

With this water table, toddlers can:

  • drop the included balls down the main water spiral
  • turn the Ferris wheel to scoop up the balls
  • turn the spinner that powers the lazy river
  • fill the included water cup and pour it in the funnel to power the twin water wheel

The water table is also easy to assemble.

Educational Benefit

Toddlers will learn about cause and effect, all while using their imagination with this fun water table. Watching the water interact with the environment will aid knowledge of these systems too.

Motor Development

The Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table encourages fine motor skills with all its activities like turning the Ferris wheel or scooping water into the cup. If your kids are like ours, it might even encourage gross motor skills when they try to climb onto the table!

Verdict

The Little Tikes Spiralin’ Seas Waterpark Play Table is the perfect way to satisfy that love of water all toddlers have with lots of fun activities. The table is the ideal height for your toddler, and it comes with a water cup and five squirt balls. If you don’t keep all the parts together, especially the small squirt balls, then they can easily become lost.

Pros

  • Includes one water cup and five balls that squirt water
  • Fun water play that helps develop fine motor skills
  • Proper height for toddlers
  • Loaded with activities

Cons

  • Small pieces get lost easily

8. Best Tool Toy: VTech Drill & Learn Toolbox

VTech Drill & Learn Toolbox

Why we like it: This toy drill and toolbox let toddlers follow project cards to make them feel like real builders.

Editor’s Rating:

Quick Facts

  • Age Range: 24 months-5 years
  • Battery Requirements: 2 AA batteries (included for demo only)   

The VTech Drill & Learn Toolbox is more than just a toy drill. It plays over 125 songs and sounds and lets toddlers practice drilling and hammering with the electronic project tray. They can drill and hammer toy screws and nails.

Best of all, when they’re all done, they can store everything in the toolbox. The toolbox comes with a drill, a hammer, two nails, and two screws.

Educational Benefit

We love that the VTech Drill & Learn Toolbox comes with two project cards your toddler can follow along to build something! The project cards also teach about numbers and colors. Light-up buttons give facts about tools and teach toddlers what sounds they make.

Motor Development

Hammering and drilling are excellent ways to work on fine motor skills and arm movements. These are skills that will help them throughout life and are motions that are worth repeated practice.

Verdict

The VTech Drill & Learn Toolbox provides lots of role-play fun for your toddler while also teaching numbers and letters. Some toddlers struggle to use the drill at first, so they might need more hands-on instruction.

Pros

  • Working drill and hammer with screws and nails
  • All the tools store in the toolbox
  • Includes two double-sided project cards
  • Helps develop fine motor skills

Cons

  • Drill is hard to use at first

9. Best Bike for 2-Year-Olds: Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike

Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike

Why we like it: This durable bike will help your toddler learn to balance in no time.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 18 months-5 years   

Teaching kids to balance before they ride a bike with pedals takes away the hard part of learning to ride a bike. The Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike is a pricier gift option, but it’s also a long-lasting one. Kids can use this bike from a little younger than two years old to five years old. The handlebar and seat quickly and easily adjust to their height without tools. The bike is also super lightweight at only 6.7 pounds, so your toddler can handle it without a problem.

For the ultimate style choice, this balance bike is available in many different colors, including black, red, blue, pink, green, orange, yellow, and silver.

One thing that’s different about this bike is that it has plastic wheels. That might seem odd, but it also means no flats and no pumping them up. One disadvantage to plastic wheels, though, is that they don’t grip the road as well as rubber ones do.

Educational Benefit

The Strider 12 Sport helps kids learn how to balance in preparation for riding a bike with pedals. The balance skills will also be useful for other sports or activities they undertake.

Motor Development

Learning to balance and using their whole bodies to stay on the bike is an excellent way of developing gross motor skills. Riding a bike has long been a fantastic way to develop motor skills, and this is no exception.

Verdict

The Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike grows with your toddler with an easily-adjustable seat and handlebar. You don’t even need tools for assembly! The wheels are made of plastic, though, which are durable but don’t grip as well as rubber tires.

Pros

  • Long-lasting
  • The seat and handlebar adjust easily without tools
  • Lightweight
  • Available in many colors

Cons

  • Plastic wheels

10. Best Art Gift: Betheaces Water Drawing Mat

Betheaces Water Drawing Mat

Why we like it: Toddlers can draw or paint on this mat without making a huge mess.

Editor’s Rating:

The Betheaces Water Drawing Mat is the perfect way to get your toddler to draw and paint on a mat instead of the floor (or walls)! Instead of the marker having color like usual, it’s the mat that changes color. You fill the marker with water, so no color gets on your floor! Their drawings disappear in just a few minutes so that they can draw again and again.

The mat is an extra-large 34.5 inches x 22.5 inches, so your toddler will have plenty of room for their artistic creations. It’s made of a soft, non-toxic polyester material that you can fold into a compact size for travel. A six-piece template for shapes and four stencils are included.

Educational Benefit

The Betheaces Water Drawing Mat helps toddlers learn how to draw, trace shapes, and use stencils. This mat is ideal for encouraging artistic creativity but without the mess!

Motor Development

Drawing, tracing, and using stencils are all ideal for fine motor movements. The mat is easily portable, so your toddler can take it outside, too.

Verdict

The Betheaces Water Drawing Mat is the perfect gift for your two-year-old artist. It’s reusable and doesn’t make a mess. The markers are a little tricky to open because you have to turn them in the opposite direction from the usual way. The first time you use them, you have to soak the tips in water for two to three hours.

Pros

  • Big enough for two or three kids to draw at once
  • Uses water for no mess
  • Conserves paper
  • Includes a booklet on how to draw animals

Cons

  • Markers are difficult to open (you have to turn it the opposite way)

11. Best Shape Sorter: Rolimate Wooden Puzzle Shape Sorter

Rolimate Wooden Puzzle Shape Sorter

Why we like it: This colorful wooden puzzle is fun and ideal for fine motor development.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 24 months-8 years

The Rolimate Wooden Puzzle Shape Sorter is a simple toy, but it has many benefits for your toddler. The different shapes have non-toxic, water-based paint, and each one has a certain number of holes in the middle. Those holes correspond with the number of dowels on the wooden platform, so your toddler has to sort the shapes.

The set is available in different sizes and number of pieces, but the smaller size is perfect for toddlers.

Educational Benefit

Stacking the shapes in different ways inspires your toddler’s creativity, and they will need to use logic and problem solving to stack on the wooden dowels. You can also use this toy to teach colors, shapes, and numbers. For bigger kids, the Rolimate set includes an insert on using the pieces to teach fractions.

Motor Development

This puzzle sorter encourages dexterity and hand-eye coordination as your toddler stacks the shapes.

Verdict

The Rolimate Wooden Puzzle Shape Sorter gives your toddler lots of opportunities to learn through play. The wooden shapes are durable and long-lasting, and you can even use this set with older kids to teach different math concepts like fractions. The pieces are small, though, so supervision is required.

Pros

  • Lots of opportunities to learn with this toy
  • Bright colors
  • Non-toxic and durable
  • Helps develop fine motor skills

Cons

  • The pieces are small, so supervision is required

12. Best Story Book: A Collection of Stories for 2-Year-Olds

A Collection of Stories for 2-Year-Olds

Why we like it: These well-known stories are just the right length to hold your two-year-old’s attention.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 0 years-3 years

A Collection of Stories for 2-Year-Olds makes a great gift because the book is big, colorful, and has well-known nursery rhymes and fairy tales. Each story is illustrated to hold your toddler’s interest. Stories that are longer—like the fairy tales—have been shortened so you won’t lose your toddler’s attention halfway through.

Educational Benefit

Reading familiar nursery rhymes helps your toddler work on their vocabulary and memory skills, all while they snuggle up for a bedtime story.

Motor Development

Toddlers want to do it themselves at this stage, and this time you can let them. Holding the book and turning the pages is a great way to work on fine motor skills.

Verdict

A Collection of Short Stories for 2-Year-Olds has a beautiful cover and wonderful illustrations, making it an ideal gift. The nursery rhymes, fairy tales, and stories are short enough to read with your toddler and hold their interest. If you and your toddler aren’t fans of nursery rhymes, then you should know that there are many more nursery rhymes than actual stories in this book.

Pros

  • Short stories, nursery rhymes, and fairy tales
  • Beautiful illustrations
  • Large book and beautiful cover make it a great gift
  • Fun to read with your two-year-old

Cons

  • More nursery rhymes than stories

13. Best Wagon for 2-Year-Olds: Little Tikes Lil’ Wagon

Little Tikes Lil’ Wagon

Why we like it: This little wagon is the perfect size for two-year-olds to pull.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 18 months-4 years    

Two-year-olds love to push and pull toys, and the Little Tikes Lil’ Wagon is ideal for your toddler to pull it along behind them. The wagon is small and lightweight, and your toddler can use it inside and outside.

Educational Benefit

The Little Tikes Lil’ Wagon is perfect for imaginary play since toddlers can load up the wagon with their stuffed animal friends or other toys and pull them around.

Motor Development

Pulling the wagon behind them is an excellent gross motor activity because your toddler will have to use their arm and leg muscles in big movements.

Verdict

The Little Tikes Lil’ Wagon is perfect for your toddler to pull all their toys inside or outside. It’s pretty small, though, so it’s not a good size for most toddlers to ride in (although they will certainly try).

Pros

  • Wagon can be used indoor or outdoor
  • Lightweight but durable
  • Handle folds flat
  • Sturdy and durable

Cons

  • Too small for your toddler to ride in

14. Best Indoor Jungle Gym: Hide N Side Five Piece Kids Ball Pit, Tents, and Tunnels

Hide N Side Five Piece Kids Ball Pit, Tents, and Tunnels

Why we like it: Toddlers can play in an indoor jungle gym at home with this five-piece set.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 12 months-6 years   

If your two-year-old is stuck inside a lot, then this is a great way to get out their energy! The Hide N Side Five Piece Kids Ball Pit, Tents, and Tunnels is an obstacle course for your toddler. It has two tents, two tunnels, and a ball pit that are quick and easy to set up.

On the outside of one of the tents is a dart wall, and the set includes four “dart” balls that stick to the target. The tunnels have mesh on one side, so they aren’t as scary to crawl through. All the pieces are configurable in different ways, and the whole thing folds up and stores away.

Educational Benefit

Tents are perfect for imaginary play, and crawling through the tunnels in a mini-maze helps with logic and problem-solving.

Motor Development

Crawling, playing in the ball pit, and throwing the dart balls all require coordination. These activities all help your toddler develop their arm and leg movements as well.

Verdict

Your two-year-old will get out tons of energy in the Hide N Side. The set doesn’t include balls for the ball pit, and the manufacturer recommends filling the pit with 600-800. You can buy the balls separately here, but it gets pricey.

Pros

  • See-through mesh tunnels
  • Folds away easily in a case for storage and portability
  • Five pieces
  • Easy to assemble

Cons

  • Ball pit balls not included

15. Best Puzzles: Magifire Wooden Toddler Puzzles

Magifire Wooden Toddler Puzzles

Why we like it: These durable and brightly-colored puzzles are perfect for toddlers.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 12 months-3 years  

Magifire Wooden Puzzles includes six puzzles with three different difficulty levels. The bear, ladybug, and bee puzzles all have four pieces. The butterfly and the car have five pieces, and the tortoise has six pieces. We like that each group of puzzles gets progressively more challenging, but they’re still easy enough not to frustrate toddlers.

The wood is durable, and the pieces have non-toxic, water-based paint. The set of puzzles comes with a drawstring bag to keep them all together.

Educational Benefit

Puzzles are ideal for developing problem-solving and logic skills. You can also use the different colors and characters as an opportunity to teach about first words and colors.

Motor Development

The chunky puzzle pieces are perfect for little hands to develop their fine motor skills. Your toddler will also develop their hand-eye coordination.

Verdict

The Magifire Wooden Toddler Puzzles are brightly colored and perfect for little hands. When your toddler finishes playing, they can put the puzzles back in the drawstring bag for safe-keeping. The puzzle pieces’ slots aren’t deep enough, though, and the puzzle pieces slide off easily.

Pros

  • Different challenge levels
  • Bright colors
  • Chunky puzzle pieces are ideal for little hands
  • Includes cotton drawstring carrying bag

Cons

  • Puzzle slots should be deeper

16. Best Block Toy: Melissa & Doug Stacking Train

Melissa & Doug Stacking Train

Why we like it: Toddlers will love stacking the colorful blocks and rolling the train.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 2 years-4 years    

The Melissa & Doug Stacking Train will appeal to toddlers who love both things that go and building blocks. The colorful blocks stack in a puzzle-like way on the wooden train, and your two-year-old will love building and rebuilding the train.

Educational Benefit

This stacking train stimulates your toddler’s imagination as they play conductor and roll it around. Building with blocks is an excellent activity for problem-solving and logic, and the fifteen blocks that make up the train are like a puzzle in the way they go together.

Motor Development

Building with blocks and rolling the train is helpful for fine and gross motor development as the blocks help your toddler work on their vision and hand movements.

Verdict

The Melissa & Dough Stacking Train is wooden and durable, so it can stand up to your little one stacking and restacking the colorful blocks. The puzzle-like way the blocks stack to form the train is frustrating for some kids.

Pros

  • Colorful and durable
  • Build with blocks or play with the train
  • Helps with logic and problem-solving
  • Multiple ways to build blocks

Cons

  • The way the blocks stack is frustrating to some kids

17. Best Game for 2-Year-Olds: Banana Panda Suuuper Size Memory Game

Banana Panda Suuuper Size Memory Game

Why we like it: This classic matching game has extra-large cards for little hands.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 24 months-5 years  

The Suuuper Size Memory Game has twenty-four colorful animal picture cards that your toddler can match together. The cards are 6 x 6 inches to grab a younger toddler’s attention and make it easier for them to match the pictures. This game is also a Dr. Toy Best Toy Pick for 2018.

Educational Benefit

Aside from developing your toddler’s memory, these cards can also be used as flashcards for teaching animals, first words, and animal sounds.

Motor Development

Pointing to the cards, matching them up, and playing with the cards are great for fine motor development.

Verdict

The Banana Panda Suuuper Size Memory Game has extra-large animal cards that are colorful and fun for your toddler to match. This game is challenging for most two-year-olds, but once your child gets a little older, they’ll probably lose interest. So, even though the age range goes to five years old, we don’t think it will be challenging or worthwhile at that age.

Pros

  • Extra-large cards for easy matching
  • Teaches animal names
  • Includes handy carrying case
  • Award-winning game

Cons

  • Not challenging for long

18. Best Sport Set for 2-Year-Olds: Little Tikes Easy Score Basketball Set

Little Tikes Easy Score Basketball Set

Why we like it: This basketball set is the perfect size for your little athlete.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 18 months-5 years   

If your toddler loves shooting hoops, the Little Tikes Easy Score Basketball Set is the best way to help your toddler develop their skills. The basketball hoop adjusts as your toddler grows with six different height settings from 2 feet to 4 feet.

It includes one junior-sized basketball so your toddler can start playing right away. You can also weigh down the basketball hoop base with sand – but that doesn’t come with the set.

Educational Benefit

Sports are great for teaching kids social skills, teamwork, and cooperation. They can learn important skills while staying active and having fun.

Motor Development
Playing basketball will teach your toddler hand-eye coordination, help them with their gross motor development, and strengthen their arm and leg muscles.

Verdict

Your busy toddler will have fun burning their energy with the Little Tikes Easy Score Basketball Set. We like that the basketball hoop is height adjustable, so your toddler can enjoy it for several years. The base needs sand in it to keep it from toppling over, but the set doesn’t include play sand.

Pros

  • Height-adjustable from 2 feet to 4 feet
  • Includes one junior-sized basketball
  • Helps with gross motor development
  • Perfect way to burn toddler energy

Cons

  • Basketball hoop base needs sand, but it doesn’t come included

19. Best Little People Toy: Big Yellow School Bus

Big Yellow School Bus

Why we like it: This super-sized school bus makes a fun pull toy for toddlers.

Editor’s Rating:

Quick Facts

  • Age Range: 12 months-5 years  
  • Battery Requirements: 2 AA batteries (not included)

Little People playsets are so much fun for toddlers with their friendly faces and small sizes. The Little People Big Yellow School Bus is even more fun since it’s big enough to be a pull toy for toddlers! This bus’s dimensions are 7.68 inches wide x 19.29 inches long x 10.63 inches high, so it’s much bigger than the classic Little People school bus.

It comes with a long handle so your little two-year-old can tug it along behind them. This playset includes Four Little People figures, but the bus has space for twelve figures total.

Educational Benefit

Toddlers can use this school bus and its four included Little People for pretend play and role- playing. The bus also has three buttons that teach the alphabet, shapes, and counting along with over 40 sounds and music.

Motor Development

The Little People Big Yellow School Bus is ideal for both fine motor and gross motor development. Toddlers can put the Little People in their seats on the bus, push the buttons to hear the sounds, and open and close the stop sign. Toddlers can also pull out the large handle and pull it along behind them as they walk.

Verdict

For Little People fun, the Big Yellow School Bus is the perfect choice for toddlers. Your toddler will learn, play, and develop their fine and gross motor skills. The bus doesn’t come with batteries included, so you’ll need to pick some up before your toddler excitedly opens the box.

Pros

  • Includes four Little People figures
  • Handle stores under the bus
  • Teaches the alphabet, counting, and shapes
  • Plays sounds, songs, and music

Cons

  • Batteries not included

20. Best Bath Toy: Boon Building Bath Pipes Toy

Boon Building Bath Pipes Toy

Why we like it: Colorful pipes with suction cups provide endless entertainment in the bath.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 12 months+  

Toddlers have lots of fun in the bath, especially if they have the right toy! The Boon Building Bath Pipes Toy is a set of differently-shaped pipes that attach to your bathtub with suction cups. Kids can arrange them in different ways and pour water in them for maximum bathtub fun. The pipes are available in different sets of three, five, or thirteen.

Educational Benefit

All the different ways toddlers can arrange the pipes are great for problem-solving and logic, but regardless of the benefits, your toddler will just love watching the water flow from pipe to pipe!

Motor Development

Pouring water in the pipes is excellent for fine motor development and dexterity and also practicing being careful and making sure they don’t spill a drop. It’s also good for judging amounts.

Verdict

The Boon Building Bath Pipes Toy is a fun bath time toy that also teaches problem-solving, logic, and cause and effect. You can buy a set with just a few pipes if you think your toddler will be overwhelmed or get a set with thirteen pieces for your older kids. The pipes are difficult to clean, though. If you don’t wash them and dry them thoroughly after each bath time, they will grow mold.

Pros

  • Bright colors
  • Many different pipe configurations
  • Different set options
  • Lots of fun in the bath

Cons

  • Difficult to clean

21. Best Cars for 2-Year-Olds: Top Bright Wooden Race Track and Ramp with Four Mini Cars

Top Bright Wooden Race Track and Ramp with Four Mini Cars

Why we like it: Toddlers and big kids will love watching cars race down the colorful ramps.

Editor’s Rating:

Age Range: 18 months+  

Your toddler can race four mini cars down colorful, BPA-free ramps with the Top Bright Wooden Race Track. The cars are made of wood and plastic, but they have been tested to both the US and European toy safety standards. The wheels can’t come off of the cars without some sort of violent destruction—like hammering them hard against a wall.

Educational Benefit

Racing these four cars helps toddlers learn numbers, cause and effect, and colors. Each car is a different color and number so that they can learn quickly. It might also engender a spirit of competition.

Motor Development

Pushing the cars down the race track takes dexterity and helps increase hand-eye coordination, but toddlers will just enjoy watching the cars race to the bottom!

Verdict

The Top Bright Wooden Race Track and Ramp helps hold a busy toddler’s attention as they push the cars down the ramps. We like that the cars don’t fall apart or lose their wheels easily. The whole toy is small, though. We think toddlers should play with it under supervision if they’re still putting things in their mouths.

Pros

  • Made of durable wood and plastic
  • Teaches colors and numbers
  • Includes four mini cars
  • Fun for toddlers and big kids

Cons

  • Smaller track than expected

Final Thoughts on Gifts for 2-Year-Olds

Two-year-olds are busy exploring and learning about their world, so toys and activities that can help them learn and have fun are ideal. You’ll know your gift is a success if your busy toddler stops and takes notice for more than a few seconds!

Remember, though, that the best way for toddlers to learn and develop those essential motor skills is for you to play with them. So, pick a toy or gift from this list that you will love, too!

About the Author

Jessica Leake

With five kids from the age of still-in-diapers to tween, Jessica Leake should have a degree in kid stuff, parenting, and diapers by now. Sadly, her only official degree is as a psychotherapist (Master of Social Work/licensed clinical social worker) which she puts to good use homeschooling all those kids. She’s also the author of four traditionally published novels, the two most recent by HarperTeen. She lives in Greenville, SC with her pharmacist husband, their five young children, two dogs, and a whole lot of chickens.

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