Janod Construction Blocks –
We received Janod Construction Blocks as a 1st birthday gift and waited until our son was 18 months until we gave them to him to play as the recommended age is 18 months and a few of the wooden blocks are quite small. The blocks are designed in France but are made in China using water based paints. Check out Janod Construction Blocks on Amazon.com!
Tegu blocks are made of sustainable sourced Honduran hardwoods and a water-based lacquer finish. Magnets are safely embedded into each piece which makes for unique and creative block play! Tegu has built their own manufacturing plant in Honduras and give back to the community with reforestation and social outreach initiatives. When you make a purchase from Tegu you are contacted via email and given the opportunity to direct a portion of the proceeds to two Tegu initiatives: reforestation and education for the impoverished. It’s your choice – Tegu will either plant 12 trees in Honduras or fund one day of school for a child who would otherwise work on a trash dump near Tegucigalpa. Check out Tegu on Amazon.com!
Plan Toys Mini Fire Engine
Our son LOVED the Plan Toys Mini series and in particular, the Mini Fire Engine. It is very sturdy, rated for ages 19 months+ and like all Plan Toys products, is made of non-toxic organic rubberwood. The ladder moves up and down and turns making a clicking sound and otherwise, has no other sounds. As a parent who has tried to avoid loud toys, this line of simple toys are a top choice in our household. Check out the Plan Toys Mini Fire Engine on Amazon.com!
Don’t forget to also check out the other ‘mini’ vehicles – bulldozer, roller, excavator and garbage truck!
Plan Toys Shape and Sort It Out
The Plan Toys Shape and Sort It Out toy was a 1st birthday gift and was a hit for almost an entire year. The shapes were often played with outside of the sorter and like all Plan Toys, it is made in Thailand from organic rubberwood. We highly recommend this toy! Check out Plan Toys Shape and Sort It Out on Amazon.com!
Plan Toys Geometric Sorting Board
We received the Plan Toys Geometric Sorting Board as a 1st birthday gift. Our son really didn’t start playing with the toy until closer to 18 months and it has been a great shape puzzle. The recommended age of the toy is 2+ years but if you are looking to get a good amount of use out of the puzzle, you can begin to use it earlier with your child while you are supervising. Check out the Plan Toys Geometric Sorting Board on Amazon.com!
KidKraft Coffee Set
The KidKraft Coffee Set is made in China from a combination of solid and composite wood materials. Like the step stool we purchased, the KidKraft company has addressed concerns with the use of ‘composite wood materials’ in their products via their quality and safety statement.
The Coffee Set is recommended for ages 3+ but we purchased this for our child’s 2nd birthday and it has gotten a lot of use. It’s one of the favorite sets during play dates (especially the coffee pot and 2 cups). My son LOVES the sugar bowl and spoon to add sugar to the coffee he makes to be just like mom.
There are other wooden brands/sets on the market but we decided on this one as we liked the look of this set the best and we’re very pleased with our decision. There has been no issue with paint flaking/chipping as is the case with the reviews of other common brands. Check out the KidKraft Coffee Set on Amazon.com!
Wonderworld Fruity and Veggie Baskets
We wanted to get a wooden food set for our child’s 2nd birthday when the food play was really starting. After reviewing a few different sets including Plan Toys, we decided on the Wonderworld Fruit and Vegetable Basket Sets. Wonderworld toys are made in Thailand using rubber wood, non-toxic paints/dyes/lacquers and formaldehyde-free glue. The recommended age is 3+ years but our child has been playing actively with both sets since the age of 2.
The pieces are small and I like to supervise when he’s playing with these in particular since the fruits and vegetables come in halves with Velcro to enable them to be ‘cut’ open. The cherries in the fruit set are packed away in a box since they were so small but the other pieces are fine with supervision. I found that most if not all of the wooden sets are much smaller than the plastic food sets, so supervision is a requirement for basically all of these small piece sets. Check out the Wonderworld Baskets on Amazon.com!
Educo Healthy Gourmet Food Set
The Educo Healthy Gourmet Food Set contains wooden play food including 3 eggs, strawberry yogurt, blueberry jam, milk, orange & apple juice, wheel of cheese and a juice box. Educo is part of Hape International which is a German company with a wholly owned manufacturing facility in China. The food set is made of wood, water-based paint and formaldehyde-free glue. Hape has issued a Safety and Quality statement for reference. Check out Educo Healthy Gourmet Food on Amazon.com!
Melissa and Doug Wooden Toys
We purchased the following Melissa & Doug toys when our little guy was 14 months old. Even though the products are recommended for ages 3+, they were definitely of interest to our son very early on. The puzzle and magnetic pieces can potentially be a choking hazard so while they are young, these toys require supervision just like most everything else!!
Melissa and Doug Shape Sorting Clock
When we purchased the Melissa and Doug Shape Sorting Clock our son was initially interested in the colors and shapes of the pieces. He transitioned to learning the numbers on each piece and then was able to put the puzzle pieces back in the clock. This has always been a favorite toy for other kids too during playdates.
Check out the Melissa & Doug Wooden Shape Sorting Clock on Amazon.com!
Melissa and Doug Magnetic Farm Hide N Seek
The Melissa and Doug Magnetic Farm Hide and Seek board has barnyard doors that open and close with various magnetic animals hiding behind the doors. Our son loved to open each set of doors, call out the animal names and then put them all back in their original spots. Check out the Melissa & Doug Magnetic Farm Hide and Seek on Amazon.com!
Melissa and Doug Basic Skills Board
The Melissa and Doug Basic Skills Board contains larger wooden pieces with zips, buttons, snaps, laces and a buckle that fit together in a puzzle to outfit a bear. The board is a very cute concept and my son loves the snaps and zipper! The laces, button and buckle are definitely later skills to be learned. One issue is that the board is a puzzle so the pieces can be removed. In the reviews, parents have stated that it was too hard for their children to learn the skills on pieces that are not anchored. I have just always sat with my son and held the pieces for him as he learns the skill so haven’t had the issue. Check out the Melissa and Doug Basic Skills Board on Amazon.com!