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Best Occupational Therapy Toys For Toddlers In 2024

Best Occupational Therapy Toys For Toddlers

I reached out to some  certified occupational therapists while searching  for the best occupational therapy toys for this article and was surprised to find the extent to which playing with toys can help your toddler overcome difficulties they may face in day-to-day activities.

Providing the right toys can really help your little one improve their fine and gross motor skills along with reaching other developmental milestones. So, in this guide, I will list products that are beneficial for a child’s physical and mental health.

Opting for toys that can provide fun and learning at the same time can work like a charm for toddlers facing mental or physical problems.

During my research, I found that many occupational therapists highly recommend toys like tweezers, shape sorters, suction cups, magnetic blocks, etc for toddlers facing any developmental issues.

The List Of The Best Occupational Therapy Toys

Here are top-rated toys that are highly recommended by therapists

Learning Resources Count & Color Choo Choo

Recommended toys by occupational therapists for toddlers

This playful “number recognition” toy from Learning Resources is ideal to boost visual perceptual skills in toddlers. The set includes colorful pieces that help early learners master shape, number, and color recognition in one go. It also helps in improving the shape sorting and fine motor skills of toddlers as they load the blocks back into the train.

This train set also stimulation to the imagination. The cars are easy to connect and disconnect for little hands. Last but not least, this set is made of non-toxic material. We highly recommend this toy to help children learn about counting, sequencing numbers, matching shapes, and basic color recognition.

Play-Doh Modeling Compound 

top therapy toys

Kids love playing with mud and there isn’t anything better than Play-Doh for that mud like feel without the dirt. These 10 cans of colorful Play-Doh are ideal for strengthening hand muscles and improving fine motor skills. Made up of non-toxic and non-allergic compounds, this Play-Doh set is completely safe for toddlers to spark their imagination.

This Play-Doh comes in different colors and super soft texture. It feels softer and is easy for little hands to mold into different shapes.

Experts highly recommend Play-Doh as an occupational therapy toy for toddlers with developmental delays. Toys like these empower toddlers to build a physical picture of stories in their minds, and gives them the freedom to express themselves.

SQUIGZ from Fat Brain Toys

highly rated toys by occupational therapists for toddlers

SQUIGZ is ideal for toddlers who are facing hand/eye coordination issues. These little fun suckers improve visual-motor skills as well as hand strength. This set of 24 SQUIGZ can be connected to each other or any non-porous surface. Suction toys like these are great for boosting creativity in kids as they can easily join and take them apart with minimal effort.

Toddlers can join them and then stick their creativity to any surface around the home without damaging wall, floors or cupboards. The cups are made up of 100% BPA-free material and leave no marks or residue on the surface where you attach them. Suction toys are great for toddlers going through occupational therapy. As your little one uses their hand to attach and detach cups, this helps them improve their fine motor skills.

Just stick these suction toys to a bathtub, kitchen cabinet, granite floor, or car window and let your toddler have fun with it. You can pack all of these 24 pieces and take them on a family trip as well. SQUIGZ is the best occupational therapy toy for toddlers with hours of play every single day.

Kids Play Tunnel

Play tunnel for kids to improve physical development

Have you seen kids make a tunnel with pillows and blankets? Well, this play tunnel can be used as an indoor or outdoor toy. This play tunnel helps in strengthening the arm and leg muscles as your little one crawls through it. It is portable, lightweight, and easy to set up.

This play tunnel is excellent for providing vestibular input to your little one, this is the sense of balance and spatial orientation for the purpose of coordinating movement with balance. Toddlers can also use this as a climbing tunnel between couches in a living room. It is made of high-quality material, so it won’t tear or bend easily.

Fisher-Price Shape Sorter Baby’s First Blocks

Shape sorter toys can help in occpational therapy

We love shape sorter toys and always recommend them to parents seeking advice for their kids. Not only do these toys allow hand/eye coordination but also strengthen problem solving and fine motor skills. The Fisher-Price Baby’s First Block lets your toddler learn about basic shapes and colors.

All of the 10 colorful blocks are easy to grasp and hold for little hands. It is an excellent toy for occupational therapy in toddlers, in that it not only offers lots to learn but it’s lots of fun as well. The bucket and shapes are made of non-toxic materials. The sturdy quality of the blocks makes them ideal for practicing fine motor skills.

Zoom Ball for Occupational Therapy Toy Set

toys that improve fine motor skills in toddlers

There are tons of benefits from your toddler playing with a Zoom Ball. Toys like these help in strengthening the upper body, improving body posture, gross motor skills and coordination. It also helps your toddler to improve visual coordination as they track the ball moving on the line.

Moreover, the Zoom Ball requires at least 2 people to play. So, your little one can invite his or her friend to take join in. This also helps in improving cooperation and social interaction skills in toddlers.

Giant Magnetic Letter Construction

Most effective toys for toddlers going through therapy

One of the major problems that toddlers face when going through occupational therapy is the ability to write the alphabet properly. The Magnetic Letter Construction from Learning Resources is ideal for improving writing skills and structuring basic alphabets. The set comes with big and bold colorful magnetic lines and curves for shaping alphabets. You can easily attach these magnetic lines and curves to a whiteboard or any other magnetic surface.

Skoolzy Lacing Beads

beads for toddlers to refine motor skills

Skoolzy lacing beads are ideal for toddlers to practice fine motor skills. The set includes 5 shapes and 7 different colors. These colorful beads are helpful for toddlers going through occupational therapy, autism, or related problems. Beads like these are ideal for improving hand/eye coordination.

The set helps in identifying basic shapes like circle, rectangle, square, triangle, oval, hexagon, and disc and comes with 2 lacing threads.

How To Choose The Right Occupational Therapy Toys For Kids With Special Needs

The following steps are useful in finding the right toys

  • Always consider the individual likes and needs of your kid before choosing any toy.
  • Always opt for toys that can help in improving or developing fine or gross motor skills.
  • Consider toys that may promote cooperation and sharing.
  • Make sure the toys that you choose are safe and made of non-toxic materials.

For Toddlers Facing Difficulties in Communication

When a toddler is facing difficulties communicating with parents or other kids, he or she must be offered toys that encourage repetitive movements. Parents should avoid giving toys that are battery-operated and produce light or sounds. Some of the highly recommended toys for toddlers facing autism are:

  • Blocks (For manipulation and problem-solving skills)
  • Puzzles (For improving communication and fine motor skills)
  • Textured blocks and wooden toys
  • Shape Sorters ( To encourage imaginative play and repetition)
  • Pull/Ride-on Toys (not powered)
  • Play Tunnels
  • Water tables
  • Lego ( To trigger creativity)

Which Toys are Best for Kids with Motor Delay

Toys that enable kids to practice motor skills, balancing, and problem-solving are:

  • Bowling sets
  • Musical Toys
  • Tunnels
  • Exercise balls
  • Crawling Toys
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