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Buying a gift for a young child can be difficult, as you want to purchase something that's engaging, fun, and educational. Two-year-olds, in particular, have limitless energy and love to explore the world around them with their hands, so gifts that allow them to move and explore are a safe bet.
To help you find something for the curious toddler on your list, here are the best gifts for 2-year-olds.
3 Bees & Me Dinosaur Toys
This rolling herd of dinosaurs will provide a roaring good time for tiny toddlers. That’s right, herd, as not one but four dinos, come in this value-priced pack.
Each dinosaur is modeled after a real prehistoric dino. There’s a brontosaurus, a stegosaurus, a triceratops, and of course, a T-Rex, all in bright primary colors, perched atop wheels.
Coogam Matching Eggs Color & Shape Sorter Puzzle
This carton of (fake) eggs is packed full of educational enrichment. The dozen eggs open to reveal six colors and 12 shapes, which kids have to match up. The eggs are made of durable material and they’re the perfect size for smaller hands.
Melissa & Doug Nesting and Sorting Garages and Cars With 7 Graduated Garages
Rev up the fun with this set of sorting cars and garages from Melissa & Doug. It comes complete with seven numbered wooden cars in graduated sizes. There are also seven garages included, each with a number and color that matches one of the cars for endless counting, sorting, and matching opportunities.
All of the garages can be stacked on top of one of another as well, for stacking (and knocking down) and building.
Mega Bloks 80-Piece Big Building Bag, Classic
“Wow!” will be their reaction when they see this mega bag of Mega Bloks. It comes with 80 brightly colored blocks in a variety of shapes. They’re the perfect size for little hands and versatile enough for them to dream big with their creations.
From castles to cars and so much more, there’s no limit to the things they may create. This is a perfect starter set, but it also works with all other Mega Bloks sets.
"One thing to note is that the set doesn’t have an equal number of blocks in each color. This potentially limits their value for sorting activities, but shouldn’t be a deal breaker for kids more interested in building walls of blocks and then knocking them down."—Hailey Eber, Product Tester
Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy
Bath time will become play time with this fun toy. Kids use the lightweight, magnetic fishing pole to catch the three sea creatures. The pole even makes a clicking sound. Not only is this fun, but can also teach kids hand-eye coordination.
Battat Deluxe Doctor Kit
The smallest doctor in your family now has their own kit to take care of any pretend bumps, bruises, or scrapes. The 11-piece set has colorful gear like a stethoscope, thermometer, tweezers, and a needle. Everything fits in the plastic case for easy storage.
First 100 Words: A Padded Board Book
This book is such a classic and is ideal for kids ages 1 to 3. It features 100 photos to accompany each word. Kids will expand their vocabulary all while enjoying the colorful pics. The book is made of durable material and the cover is slightly padded, making it easy for kids to hold.
John Deere Deluxe Talking Toolbelt
It’s tot tool time thanks to this set from John Deere. It includes a belt and six tools, including a screwdriver, wrench, and hammer. All of the tools feature rubber handles that are easy for little hands to grip. What’s really awesome is that the belt makes tool sounds and even says two phrases.
Step2 LifeStyle Custom Kitchen Playset
Your 2-year-old has some time before they actually start cooking, but this kitchen set is a fun start. The stove has cool sound effects like water boiling and a sizzling pan, while shelves and drawers provide plenty of storage space for the 20 accessories that are included.
Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set
To say this gift will be a slam dunk would be an understatement (and a silly pun), but it’s true. Budding ballers can shoot and score over and over again with this sturdy basketball hoop designed just for them. Perfect for hoopsters 18 months to five years old, it's easily adjustable and can go from 2 feet up to 4 feet. It also has an oversized rim for maximum points. The best part: the set comes with not one, but three, rubber balls, so if one rolls away to places unknown, the game doesn’t have to come to an end.
b. Toys Toy Drum Set
Kids will be marching to their own beat with this fantastic music set that’s as cute as it is functional. Included are silly centipede drumsticks, jingle bell ants, a busy bee maraca and clacker, a caterpillar tambourine and a shaker egg—plenty to make up a whole band. They all come packed in a bright drum with a handy carrying strap for some music on the go.
Nuby Floating Purple Octopus Interactive Bath Toy
This brightly colored toy is sure to make your kid smile. It’s perfect for 18 months and older. The purple octopus floats in the tub and includes three rings so kids can place them on the tentacles. The material is BPA-free and because the toys are sealed (no holes), there’s no worry about mold.
Age rating Any time you’re buying a toy for a young child, you’ll want to make sure it doesn’t have any pieces that could be dangerous, whether posing a choking hazard or otherwise. Most toys come with an age rating, so check that the product you’ve chosen is safe for 2-year-olds.
Educational value Two-year-olds are like little sponges, soaking up all sorts of knowledge and learning new skills every day. A toy that teaches them something — be it fine motor skills, walking, talking, music, or critical thinking — will be both educational and entertaining.
Longevity Young children grow at an astounding rate. Consider whether the gift you buy for a 2-year-old can grow with them — it might be much better to invest in something a child can use for a long period of time, as opposed to a toy they’ll grow out of in a few months.