Four-year-olds are a self-assured lot. By age 4 most parents know what types of games and toys the child prefers. Each child has his own area of interest and prefers fine-tuning skills and knowledge in his area of interest. Popular topics of interest are dinosaur play, building toys, fascination with planets and solar system, toy houses, and dolls. Let us take a look at some of the best toys for 4-year-olds. Be it a selection for your child or as a gift for another these toys won’t disappoint.
Some of the toys from this list are featured in the list of toys for 3-year-olds too. They are open-ended toys that can be played with in many ways over the years.
BEST TOYS FOR 4 YEAR OLDS
As creativity expands so does creative play. You will observe a 4 year old setting up elaborate creative play set ups. His mind is looking to explore more deeply and use every toy on hand. Magnetic tiles lend to this creative process. The child can use his imagination and build different 3-D structures, then go on to use these structures in pretend play games.
Another toy that leads to hours of independent play is Lego. There are many to choose from and 4-year-olds love building and creating using Lego. You will be amazed at your child’s creativity. Building with lego blocks is also great for fine motor skills for preschoolers. Playing with blocks develops spatial skills that can help build stronger arithmetic abilities in schooling years.
Besides creativity, now is a good time to get your child observing patterns, solving puzzles, and using reasoning skills. All of these skills are used later on to read and solve problems.
Expose the child to different types of puzzles that challenge the brain to sort, reason and solve.
Some of the different types puzzles we use at age 4 are :
Get children used to building and creating designs. These construction sets are great for fine motor skills, problem solving and spatial skills.
Having an easel in the room motivates the child to pick up the chalk and draw or write. We love the Easel by Ikea Mala, its large in size and comes with a whiteboard at the back and a set of crayons and duster.
The colorful beads of an Abacus make learning fun. Start with simple counting, addition, and subtraction and later use the abacus for multiplication and division operations.
Age 4 is when preschoolers are honing in on those gross motor skills like balance. A scooter is a great introduction to this age group. Watch your 4-year olds zooming away on their scooters and trying new moves with confidence.
Wooden blocks, rainbow stackers and sticks
Another set of open-ended toys is wooden rainbow stackers, blocks, and sticks. Children can use their imagination and come up with elaborate setups for pretend play. Toys made of wood also last a very long time and can be used to hand down the generations in a family.
Sand toy set
Creating opportunities for the child to indulge in sensory play is important. Sensory toys like sand pits help the child motor skills, hand eye coordination and even promote social skills as children learn to play together. You can find many sand trays in the market or you can build one yourself at home. We used an old IKEA cardboard box and some beach sand we bought from a gardening store. Add in some scoops, cups, moulds, shovels, or include some toys like dinosaurs, construction vehicles, farm animals for dramatic play.
Most 4 year olds have by now decided on what vehicle they like. Some children obsess over planes and others over construction vehicles.
A battery operated train is sure to catch your child’s attention.
Here are a few sturdy and cute toys for vehicle play, you can choose one that suits your child’s interest.
A combination of these toys are used by our 4 year old everyday. We love watching how he expresses his creativity through some and how he uses analytical thinking with others. Its wonderful watching little ones play.
I hope this list helps you as you decide on the best toy for your 4-year-old. Until next time, Ciao!