The 9 Best Toys to Buy for Toddler Boys in 2018

Perfect presents that keep his interest

Baby boy playing with toy car
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Toddler boys are all sorts of rough, tough, sweet and sensitive. They’re typically crazy little balls of energy that are infuriating one moment and the most loveable, squishable creatures on the planet the next. Predictable, they are not.

They love discovering new things and are delighted by toys with lots of flashy bells and whistles, but also with simple toys that spark their imagination. Here are eight of the best toddler toys for boys from outside adventures to those that encourage learning.

  • 01 of 10

    Best Overall: VTech KidiBeats Kids Drum Set

    Rock on, little dude. This drum set is mega cool and will teach him a thing or two while he jams.

    It comes with three drum pads plus a cymbal, each of which makes their own sound. They can pound out their own tunes with the plastic drum sticks or follow the lights and play along with one of nine different melodies that include rock, dance and pop sounds. Beyond the music, there are modes for learning letters and numbers as he taps along.

    It runs on three AA batteries (only a demo set is included), and parents will be thrilled to know there’s a volume control for those days when the pa rum pa pum pum is giving them a pounding headache.

    It’s a great toy to spark musical interest and develop skills at the same time, and of course, the most important thing: It’s fun. He’ll just wanna bang on his drum all day.

  • 02 of 10

    Best STEM: Magna-Tiles 100-Piece Clear Colors Set

    It is never too young to start working on their building and math and science skills. Magna-Tiles are wildly popular amongst the above 3 set because they not only help develop STEM skills they are also a lot of fun (for parents too!). This kit comes with 100 pieces, so really all he needs to get started on his building adventures. He can build a castle, cube, or even an elephant—the ideas are really limitless.

    While Magna-Tiles do have a high price tag they are very durable and will last for years between children. Many parents say they are worth the investment because they are fun and educational.

  • 03 of 10

    Best for Truck Lovers: Pull Back Vehicles,12 Pack Assorted Construction Vehicles and Race Car Toy

    Can a boy ever have too many toy cars and trucks? We think not. This 12- pack of assorted pull-back construction vehicles will boost his collection big time and seriously rev up playtime. For one low price, he’ll get six race cars and six construction vehicles to power hours of entertainment.

    No batteries are necessary, he just pulls them back to send the vehicles flying forward. Race them, crash them, launch them down ramps—creativity will drive how he plays with them. The construction vehicles contain movable parts, such as a dump truck with a bed that lifts up, for even more scenarios. Each is about 2.5 inches high, so they’re the perfect size for little fingers and can be used inside or out. Gentlemen, start your engines.

  • 04 of 10

    Best for Sports Lovers: VTech Smart Shots Sports Center

    For the littlest jocks, this sports center is a slam dunk. Theirs’s a basketball hoop and basketball for shooting and a soccer ball and goal for kicking goals, both of which come complete in one cute center. It’s topped off with a light-up scoreboard to keep the count and fun sounds like cheering to bring the games to life.

    Not only does it offer good, active fun, it will also teach them a thing or two while they’re working up a sweat. Whether it’s counting the score or playing with the various buttons and flaps that teach shapes and play various songs and sounds, there’s plenty to explore with this one battery-operated toy that’s sure to be a favorite. Score!

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Best Ride-On: Fisher-Price Harley-Davidson Tough Trike

    Boys this age love ride-on toys, so why not let him ride-on a mini hog that will have him cruising his way across town. This bestselling trike from Fisher-Price is suitable for children ages 2 to 5 years old. He can work on his gross-motor skills by learning how to pedal his way around. Under the seat, he can store snacks or his trusty sippy cup for on-the-go-refreshments.

    If Harley Davidson isn't his or your thing, this also comes in a Barbie, Thomas the Engine, or Kawasaki version to suit his needs. Parents say their children love it and assembly was super easy making this a win-win.

  • 06 of 10

    Best Pretend Play: Step2 Best Chef's Toy Kitchen Playset

    if he likes to help out in the kitchen why not get him his own pretend kitchen where he can get cooking safely. He can cook eggs on the stovetop, bake a cake in the oven, and even wash the dishes. This set comes with a 25-piece accessory kit that will give him pots and utensils—really all he needs to be his own chef. Pretend play is such a big thing for toddlers and this set will inspire him to be just like his parents and maybe even start some good habits.

    Parents agree that this is a great compact set that doesn't take up too much space or cost a fortune. Some noted a drill was needed to put together so be prepared for a bit of setup.

  • 07 of 10

    Best Artistic: SGILE Non-Toxic Magnetic Erasable Magna Doodle Drawing Board Toy

    This Magna Doodle drawing board is perfect for him to create beautiful masterpieces… or squiggles, scribbles and random designs. It’s a blank canvas for him to do with as he pleases, over and over again. There’s no paper to replenish, no crayon tips to break, just a magnetic stylus that allows him to create, erase and create again and again.

    A step up from traditional black-and-white magnetic drawing boards, this one has four color zones—red, green yellow and blue—for extra vibrant, bright creations. It also includes stamps for tracing and pattern-making fun. It’s also great for teaching letters, numbers and more, and makes a great travel toy (with the pen attached, there will be no hunting under the seats for lost crayons!). Bonus: Maybe he won’t draw on the walls.

  • 08 of 10

    Best Cars: Melissa & Doug K's Kids Pull-Back Vehicle Set

    This four-pack of assorted pull-back vehicles will boost his collection big time and seriously rev up playtime. The set contains a school bus, a family car, fire truck and a police car to power hours of entertainment.

    No batteries are necessary, he just pulls them back to send the vehicles flying forward. Race them, crash them, launch them down ramps—creativity will drive how he plays with them. Each is soft (Read: No scuff marks on walls and furniture if they crash) and lightweight, so they’re perfect for little fingers. Gentlemen, start your engines.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Best for Pet Lovers: Electronic Pet Dog

    There’s just something about a boy and his dog, but sometimes there’s something about a dog that just works for families. Be it allergies, lifestyle or whatnot, sometimes a real dog just doesn't fit the picture, which is where this electronic version of man’s best friend comes in. He walks, barks and plays games; he even sings and dances, but no pooper scooper is needed!

    It’s easy for toddlers to operate—just touch its head and it will start walking around as “How Much Is That Doggie in the Window” plays or pull his tail, and he’ll issue a warning, “oh no, stop it!” It runs on three AA batteries, which are included, and will turn off after 30 seconds automatically when not in use to preserve them. It’s a fun, interactive toy that will get tons of use even if you also have other real-life furry friends in the house.

  • 10 of 10

    Best Active: Galt Toys Nursery Trampoline

    For those little guys with lots of energy to burn (and are there any toddler boys who don’t?), this mini turtle trampoline is just the thing. They can bounce, bounce, bounce all that energy right out and then come back for more when they’re recharged.

    Used indoors, it’s the perfect way for them to get exercise on rainy days, in cold weather or anytime when running around outdoors isn’t an option, but it can also be used outdoors. Designed for kids ages one to three and up to 44 pounds, little ones will get years of use out of this one. Put it beside an adult mini trampoline for mom or dad, and you can have a family exercise session.

    The surface for jumping is large enough for lots of fun jumps (16" x 20" x 5"), and there’s a stability bar they can hold onto to keep them steady. It’s sure to be the star of any playroom.