Note: Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Read our full disclosure policy here.
Here’s a mommy pet peeve for you: Wasting money on toys that my kids only play with once or twice, not to mention the ones that take up a lot of space! I’m sure many moms and dads out there can relate, yes?
In an effort to take the guesswork out of picking out toys for your two-year–old I’ve put together a list of home run-my kid loves this-must have-totally worth the money toys. I’m not only bringing my experience to the table but many other moms who have 2-year-olds in their house have contributed their favorite toys as well.
Hopefully you can pass this list along to grandparents, family, friends and any other well-meaning gift buyers for your little one. Pin your hearts out on this post too. You’ll want these toy ideas for 2-year-olds for the next birthday party or even Christmas.
*Disclaimer: I do not own all of these toys. Most of the ones I have I got at garage sales or am borrowing from other families. Just didn’t want to come off as someone who spends thousands of dollars on toys!
In no particular order…
Favorite Toys for Two-Year-Olds (put together by moms)
I bought this on a whim from Kohls on Black Friday. I had no idea what a hit it would be with my 2 year old. She LOVES these books and the interactive pad that goes with them. It has been a great way for her to learn letter recognition too. This would also be a great travel activity.
A great way for little hands to stay busy and learn letters at the same time. Two year olds love that this is kind of a puzzle but moms like it because it teaches letter and spelling recognition.
Boys and girls love the challenge of putting together tracks and then rolling cars and trains around on them. A quality train set is well worth the investment and will keep your toddler busy!
My gal can’t get enough of these. Two year olds love the challenge of a puzzle and the accomplishment of putting one together. Stock up on some quality wooden puzzles for those busy little hands!
I love how play dough brings out creativity and experimentation in toddlers. It’s nice when they are past the stage of eating the play dough and they actually manipulate it and do pretend play with it.
Two pairs of craft scissors safely cut paper in either straight or zigzag lines–for both lefties and righties! They won’t cut clothing or hair. Child-safe scissors are packaged in a plastic storage pouch for easy cleanup.
A fun way for kids to learn letters. I’m adding this to our birthday list!
These toys combine cars with puzzle play. They spark the imagination through role-play and encourage creativity, because children can make their own combinations with the parts. Toys are solid wood so they are durable and long-lasting.
I’m so glad we stocked up on little animals when we did. My 2 year old plays with them almost on a daily basis. Lots of imaginative play happens with these little guys!
Two year olds love playing with pretend food. I don’t know why. I just go with it. My daughter has particularly loved this set of cutting food. The pieces are held together by velcro so when the child cuts it, it really feels like they are cutting food apart. My daughter serves us up various assortments of veggies, meats, fruits and more.
There is a reason the Cozy Coupe car has been around for over 30 years. Kid love it!
Not just for boys, people. Girls love them too.
Little hands love Little People. I don’t exactly know why but they love pretend playing with these little creatures. Especially when given an setting like the ones listed above.
Used for all sorts of different purposes, a dump truck can provide lots of entertainment. Give a little boy or girl the task or loading and dumping something and you’ll have an activity that’ll keep them busy for a long time!
My Busy Book is an amusing storybook and inventive toy in one activity kit. Your child can explore the world of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse with 12 toy figurines and a giant playmat. I had never heard of these but after looking into them a bit more, I think I am going to get some for an upcoming road trip we have.
Building towers out of these blocks is a regular activity for us around here. I like the Mega Blocks because they are big and easy to put together for little un-coordinated hands.
Let the creative juices flow! Give a toddler some solid wood blocks and see what they can come up with!
Another option for building blocks. Fun and colorful!
Visit a farm, a prehistoric landscape, a desert oasis, a jungle, or the deep blue sea, all in this interactive sticker book! The glossy, full-color backgrounds are ready to be filled with over 150 stickers.
As mentioned above, kids love manipulating play dough in any way. I love this set that includes all the different wooden tools and textured blocks to experiment with.
A friend of ours has a set of these that my two year old instantly pulls out when we visit. Kids can be super creative as they find different ways to build and stack these blocks together.
A fun activity for 2 year olds that can be used over and over again.
These are a favorite of many moms I know. They make it easy for a two year old to color with markers and not make a mess. They are easy for 2 year olds to hold and write with too.
A few things to add:
- Find these things at garage sales or Craig’s List. I think it is silly how much toy companies charge for these things when in reality, a kid will play with them for such a small amount of time. There is SO much quality used stuff out there that you could get and save SO much money.
- Consider toy swapping with a friend. Toddlers love novelty so when something “new” shows up, it’ll be a hit. Instead of spending gobs of money on new toys, swap around with your friends. The best part about it is that when you get your toys back, your kid is interested in them again!
- At the precious age of two, your child simply wants you to play WITH them. Even if you bought all of these toys and more, your child will eventually grow bored with them unless you are on the floor engaging with them as they play. As much as I would like to say your two year old will play for hours with these toys, they just probably won’t. At least mine won’t. Don’t depend on toys to entertain your children. They want YOU!