teach and play with preschool toys

Those little nuggets will absorb everything…sometimes, not what you’d expect. But as they play, they’re learning all kinds of skills that’ll help them when they finally take their first tiny steps into preschool. And there are so many toys out there designed to give ’em a leg up so they can grow by leaps and bounds. Take a look at these preschool toys and find one (or a few) that you think your little one will love, then let their imaginations take over and watch your little smarties play and learn all day long!

Easel for Two - Red
Easel for Two — Step2

The Easel for Two is a great way to give your kiddos a chance to unleash their inner artist on their own or during play dates. One side is a metal dry erase board where they can place magnets or draw with quick clean up. The other side is a chalkboard where they can get creative and have lots of fun! The Easel for Two helps to develop their fine motor skills, plus you can make the educational play even better by adding letter and number magnets to the dry erase side of the board. Let them create whatever they’d like and expand their imaginations or give them add-ons to help develop their writing skills!

Melissa & Doug Wooden Building Blocks Set - 100 Blocks
Wooden Building Block Set — Melissa & Doug

Talk about a creative block! This Wooden Building Block Set comes with 100 blocks in four colors: red, yellow, green and blue to build whatever they’d like with various shapes. Use nine different shapes including cubes, cylinders, half circles, arches and rectangles to teach them all about balance, shapes and colors while developing their fine motor skills. They’ll also feel accomplishment as they finish creations they imagined in their minds. These wooden blocks are a great way to show them that anything is possible if they dream it up and pursue it!

Count Your Chickens! Board Game
Count Your Chickens! — Peaceable Kingdom

We’ve always been told the opposite but Count Your Chickens! turns out to be a great way to introduce your kids to cooperative play while teaching them counting skills. The game is simple to learn and easy to play: players work together to add 40 chickens to the coop as they spin the dial and move around the board. There’s a sly fox who, if they land on it, will take some of the chickens from the coop. Once any player reaches the end of the board, it’s time to count up the chickens! If there are 40, everybody wins! If there isn’t, then they can try again in the next round.

Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen
Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen — KidKraft

What’s cookin’? Lots of fun! The Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen includes a pretend cutting area, sink, stove, chalkboard surfaces and a refrigerator with icemaker, sounds and pretend ice cubes! The set comes with choppable veggies, a cutting board, pretend cutting knife, a pretend herb planters and more. Turn on the stove or sink to hear sounds while it lights up! This impressive playset also includes a recycling bin to teach them the importance of helping the environment. Creativity and pretend play come alive with the Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen, so put on an apron and start teachin’ them the basics of kitchen safety, food preparation and cooking yummy meals!

Step2 Deluxe Workshop
Deluxe Workshop — Step2

Step into the Deluxe Workshop and take control of the 50-piece set that gives ’em everything they need to build their imaginations. Use the 17 wood pieces with interlocking sections to build or use the drill to secure some screws into the workstation. The tools make realistic sounds as they play, and when things get a little messy, they can always use the pretend vacuum to clean up the area! There are lots of places to store all the nuts and bolts, holders to keep their tools in sight when they need ’em and a working light for when they’re burnin’ the midnight oil on a project. They’ll build up their hand-eye coordination and craft a healthy imagination with the help of this awesome workshop perfect for any little builder!

Melissa & Doug Adventure Hand Puppets
Adventure Hand Puppets — Melissa & Doug

Got little storytellers? They’ll love coming up with fairytales and heroic missions with the Adventure Hand Puppets. The two sets include four themed puppets each, like a medieval knight, princess, prince and dragon to a cowboy, knight, superhero and pirate. The assortment gives ’em enough puppets to make endless stories and really expand their imaginations. Each puppet is made of washable fabric, too, so they can keep practicing their communication skills, build self-confidence and develop fine motor skills—all while having some great child-parent bonding time!

Play-Doh Wheels Cement Truck
Wheels Cement Truck — Play-Doh

Pave the way for play! The Play-Doh Wheels Cement Truck comes with a cool 2-ounce can of cement-colored Play-Doh for realistic playtime fun, as well as a stamping jackhammer, rolling wheelbarrow and barrier mold to get any job done. The see-through cement mixer lets ’em see the Play-Doh spin and make its way through, so they can fill up the wheelbarrow and get to work! The set also includes three additional Play-Doh colors for different types of construction activities. This cool playset is great to help them build hand-eye coordination, develop their motor skills and engage in an activity that might promote interest in construction!