When a boy turns one, he is like a sponge! He’s exploring everything with a burning curiosity and his busy mind and hands. He needs activities that stimulate safe play and adventure, and it’s a bonus when toys introduce concepts like colors, shapes, numbers, and letters. When shopping for your little man, be sure to consider age-appropriate toys that allow him to adventure and grow safely. Here are some of our favorites:
1. Fisher-Price Bright Beats Junior BeatBo
Get your little guy grooving with BeatBo Junior, the smaller version of the animatronic musical robot that encourages movement and dance! Bright colors and lights will gain your child’s attention as they learn music, movement, interaction, and singing. Touching BeatBo’s colorful tummy or the buttons on his feet makes him react, teaching your child cause and effect. All your little one has to do is bat at this guy’s head to get him moving and dancing. While this mini robot doesn’t do quite as much as the regular BeatBo, it’s the perfect size to fit in a diaper bag and take on the go.
2. VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Mickey Mouse Magical Wonderland
When innovative VTech partners with always popular Mickey Mouse, you know you’ve got a winner! The VTech Go! Go! Smart Wheels vehicles ride on an interactive track, making sounds, saying phrases, and playing music as they go. This Mickey Mouse Magical Wonderland features an interactive Mickey Mouse vehicle, a castle, and a moving Ferris wheel and gears. The car plays three sing-alongs and six melodies for your child to enjoy. This VTech track can also combine with others for added fun.
3. Little Tikes Cozy Coupe
This toy car is a classic that will have you reminiscing of your own childhood! It has retained many of the features that you likely used to love with a few updates. A handle in the back allows you to help steer younger children. You can also remove the floorboard so your child can move the car as they grow. The wheels are durable and rotate 360 degrees. The little car features a smiling face and has a high seat back, a realistic steering wheel, a horn, and gas cap, and storage space in the back.
4. Sit to Stand Learning Train
My kids were totally obsessed with this learning train. It offers four different ways for your little one to play. Your little guy can use it as a floor toy, a push toy, a walker, or a ride-on toy. It has sixteen different activities, all of which are educational and will teach your child the alphabet, colors, numbers, and more. With a storybook, interactive buttons, a walkie-talkie, and more, your child will be entertained for hours. The best part? It has two volume modes, so you can keep the volume down.
5. Bubble Blowing Lawn Mower
Bubbles are always a blast, but it can be difficult for little ones to make their own. That’s where this super cute bubble-blowing lawn mower comes in! All your little guy has to do is push the mower around to create tons of colorful bubbles. The mower also makes realistic sounds, so your child can really get the full experience. This is a great toy to encourage your little boy to get outside and play, and it’s easy to remove the handle for storage when playtime is done.
6. Rocking Dragon
A fun and modern take on the classic rocking horse, this dragon rocker will allow your little guy to work on his balance in a safe and comfortable environment. The handles are easy to grip, and the seat is low to the ground, so your child can climb aboard themselves. The plush dragon is both adorable and super soft, so it’s great for riding and cuddling. The only problem is that you might have trouble convincing your little guy that it’s time to get off!
7. Space Astronaut Kids Play Tent
Deliver an out-of-this-world experience for your child with this space-themed play tunnel and tent combo! The three-piece set includes a “castle” tent, a crawling tunnel, and a square tent that are all easily connected together for hours of indoor or outdoor fun. Your one-year-old can safely enjoy exploring the planets with astronaut friends in his play tent as he crawls back and forth. For added fun, you can turn the tent into a ball pit with separately purchased plastic balls. We recommend these cute non-toxic ones. The tents and tunnel are easily disassembled and folded for storage.
8. Wooden Activity Cube
This activity cube has so many activities your little guy will stay busy for hours! Open, slide, twist, push, and turn the pieces on this sturdy wooden base to reveal new fun on every side. This toy promotes visual and tactile learning in growing children. Games include a learning clock, a bead maze, spinning gears, a shape sorter, and more! It even has a mini-xylophone for musical fun. Plus, this cube comes with bonus flashcards to start teaching your little guy some basic sight words.
9. Toys Drumroll Please
Music is the universal language! Start your child off with several different vibrant musical instruments as part of this drum kit. The drum doubles as convenient storage for a castanet, whistle, egg shaker, tambourine, and two drumsticks. Your child can explore the many sounds each instrument makes while enjoying the bright colors and different textures of every piece. This toy will train his musical ear, encourage hand-eye coordination, and highlight sensory development.
10. Drop and Go Dump Truck
This truck will keep your child entertained for hours! The interactive vehicle introduces numbers as it counts aloud the brightly colored balls as your little guy dumps them into the truck. He can watch as the balls roll into the bucket, then lift the lever to dump out his load. Three buttons on the side play different music and phrases, teaching him about colors and tools. As he steadies himself on his feet, he can pull the truck along for more adventures.
11. Turtle Trampoline
Can’t get outdoors but need to find a way for your little guy to expend some of his energy? This little turtle trampoline is a great choice. The turtle design is super cute and doubles as a safety shield, covering the springs so your little boy can’t pinch his fingers or toes. It also has a handle that’ll help your child balance as he bounces, which helps to prevent falls. It’s small enough to keep in a playroom or bedroom, and your little boy will love bouncing away.
12. Montessori Educational Dinosaur
If your little boy is anything like mine, he can’t get enough of dinosaurs. This Ankylosaurus is an adorable toy that also helps with fine motor skills. The spikes come out, and your child will have to figure out how to get them back in. Plus, they’re all numbered, so he can start to recognize numbers and learn to count as he plays. Its bright colors will attract your little guy’s attention. Plus, the back pulls off and has plenty of room to store all the spikes when your child is done playing.
13. Fat Brain Toys pipSquigz
These bright, colorful, award-winning suction toys will keep your one-year-old’s attention almost anywhere! You can stick these silly shapes to nearly any surface. Children love to hear the rattle of each pipSquigz and the “Pop!” as the suction cups are pulled apart. Each piece is textured, stimulating your child’s sense of touch with bumps, waves, and ridges. These toys are small enough to take on the go, and the durable, BPA-free silicone holds up well in the dishwasher.
14. Little Tikes First Slide
Little boys love to slide, and this Little Tikes First Slide is perfect for one-year-olds. With only three steps to the top and a short slide, you won’t have to worry about your child getting hurt. It offers just enough to get them excited, and it’s small enough to use indoors on the days you can’t make it outside. It even folds up in half for convenient storage. After giving this slide a go, your little guy will never want to stop!
15. First Balance Bike
Balance bikes are the perfect tool to get your little one ready for a big bike. They allow toddlers to start working on their balance in a safe and fun way. This particular bike is even better for one-year-olds because it has four wheels for added stability. The seat is wide and comfortable, and it’s super low to the ground, so even if your little guy does manage to fall off, he won’t have far to fall. It comes in a variety of colors, so you can get your little boy’s favorite. The best part? Your child can even ride it indoors!
16. Giant Dinosaur Stuffed Toy
What little boy wouldn’t love cuddling up with a giant dinosaur? This T-Rex is two feet tall, which might be just as tall as your one-year-old! It’s brightly colored, and the fabric is super soft, so it’s sure to be a hit. It even stands up by itself. Whether your little guy wants to play pretend or is just looking for a friend to hug and snuggle, this dinosaur is a great choice. My son stands his dinosaur next to his bed to watch over him as he sleeps, and it’s really helped him feel safe at night.
On An Important Side Note… Asher and I (pictured) feel it’s necessary to highlight the value of life insurance for parents with young kids. After extensive research, we discovered that parents can get insured for as little as $10 per month. We use Ladder Life who offers coverage up to $3M per parent (without a medical exam, just a few health questions) and you can apply 100% online.
Get a quote in less than 30 seconds at LadderLife.com ➜
1. 58 Inch Banzai Sprinkle Friends Play Mat
Especially fun for those spring and summer birthdays, this play mat brings a little water park joy right to your backyard! The durable play mat plugs into a standard garden hose, shooting streams of water in the air and turning the mat into a wading pool. By changing the water pressure on the hose, you can adjust the height of the water spray. The playfully designed 58-inch mat keeps your little guy’s feet cool and safe from debris on the ground while they enjoy splashing around in the water. The cute little fish, turtle, and star add a little extra fun, and they even shoot water out of their mouths.
2. Trucks with Play Mat
Vehicles of any kind are always a favorite with my son, so this set was a lifesaver. It comes with a playmat, seven vehicles, a stoplight, and a bag to store and carry everything. This was an easy toy to take with us when visiting friends or family, and it always kept our little boy entertained. The vehicles all make realistic sounds and offer some kind of movement (the propeller spins on the plane, the forklift arm moves up and down, etc.), and your little guy will love zooming them around the street.
3. Ice Cream Teether
At one-years-old, kids are constantly getting new teeth in, so it’s always handy to have a good teething toy around. That’s part of the reason that I love this little ice cream teether so much – it comes with a silicone sling clip that attaches it to your little guy’s clothes, so it can go with wherever they go. It also keeps it from dropping on the floor, which is a blessing because we all know how annoying it gets to follow the drop, pickup, clean, and give back routine just to have your child drop it again immediately. Plus, the ridges on the fake ice cream are especially soothing on sore gums, and it’s the perfect size for small hands.
4. Adjustable Basketball Hoop
Start your little one’s love of sports early with this Little Tikes Easy Score Basketball set. It’s the perfect size for toddlers, and the height is adjustable, so it’ll grow with your child. The set comes with a hoop and three small basketballs that are easy for little ones to grip and toss. Add sand to the base for extra stability, and your little boy will be all set to play! It’s even small enough that you can have it indoors for those days when you can’t make it outside, but still need a fun toy that your child can enjoy.
5. Hammock Swing
We all know that there’s nothing more soothing to babies than a swing, but by one-year-old, your little guy has likely outgrown his infant swing. This Hammock Swing will come to the rescue! It’s perfectly designed to support kids ages 12 months to four years old, and it can be used indoors or outdoors. It comes with a safety belt to keep your little guy secure, a removable cushion for added comfort, and a removable wooden toy to keep them entertained. The hanging ropes are adjustable and strong, and they can hold up to 150 pounds!
6. Radio Flyer Classic Wagon Walker
Ready, set, go! At one year old, whether you’re ready or not, your child is off and moving. The Radio Flyer Classic Wagon Walker puts a trusted name behind a durable toy that helps your child safely learn to master his steps. A resist-push handle gets him comfortable pushing and strolling, while a rubber bumper on the other side saves your furniture and home from wear and tear as he learns to steer. This award-winning wagon has a timeless look with its removable wooden sides and classic red wooden body.
7. Little Tikes Spiralin' Seas Waterpark Play Table
Gift your little guy the fun and feel of the beach in his own backyard with this sand and water table! The table encourages sensory and social play as your child and his friends splash around and manipulate the different toys and features attached. Your child will love dropping the included balls down the tube and watching them as they spiral down, and they’ll be working on their coordination as they try to scoop up the balls with the Ferris wheel or the little red cup. The table comes with a table base and six accessories.
8. Montessori Stacking Bundle
Building blocks and stacking toys are always a hit with little boys. The best part is that they are also really good skill builders! Your child will be working on fine and gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and more as they play with these toys. This set comes with twelve colorful blocks, six colorful stacking rings and base, and five balls. The blocks have numbers and connecting shapes for added fun. Everything is soft and squishy, so you won’t have to worry about your little guy getting hurt, and it all comes in a zippered bag for storage and portability.
Under $25 Gifts
1. VTech Kids Drum Kit
Let your little one rock out with this creative and educational drum set. The electronic set includes two sticks to tap the light-up drum pads and cymbal. Your child can choose from four different types of music and nine preprogrammed melodies. With four sound settings, your child can learn numbers or letters, follow patterns, or choose freestyle to play his own music. A great bonus for parents—the drums have a volume button (rejoice!) and also conserve power by automatically shutting off when not in use.
2. Green Toys Recycling Truck
You can’t go wrong with this large recycling truck by Green Toys. It teaches your little one to sort bottles, cans, and paper with the three little chutes on the side. The back lifts up, and the door opens for dumping. Your little one will love driving around their big truck, and they’ll be learning the concept of recycling at the same time. Not only is it fun to play with, but it is made of earth-friendly materials, reinforcing the importance of recycling and the message of taking care of our planet.
3. Sensory UFO Toy
Sensory toys are always a great option for this age. Not only do they provide hours of fun, but they also help improve skills. This cute UFO toy offers six cords of varying colors and textures that your little guy can pull through the saucer. Just flip it over, and he can start all over again! The strings even produce fun sounds as they’re pulled, offering a little musical fun. Your little boy will be improving his fine motor skills and coordination and start to recognize colors. The base has an anti-slip grip that makes it easy for little ones to keep ahold of, too.
4. Push and Pop Bulldozer
This interactive toy offers multiple ways to learn and play. Your little guy can work on his mobility by using it as a push toy, and as a bonus, he’ll have a blast watching it pop the colored balls out of the chimney and into the bucket as he walks. The bulldozer plays music and sounds as it moves for added fun. There are also buttons on the sides that’ll teach your little one colors and numbers, and they also have phrases and music. The balls can be conveniently stored in the handle after playtime is done, and don’t worry, there’s volume control, too!
5. Battat Combo Set - Phone and Keys
Kids always seem to gravitate toward mommy and daddy’s keys and cell phones. Just give in already, and give your child his own! These vibrant, chunky, child-like versions of car keys and a cell light up and make realistic sounds for great pretend play. Watch as he mimics your moves by starting the car and talking to the family! These toys are soft and safe, with a low volume that makes them tolerable for parents.
6. Melissa and Doug Sound Puzzle
Puzzles are a fantastic way for toddlers to learn patience and coordination. But these puzzles offer even more! They play sounds that’ll help your little guy start matching sounds with objects. This chunky wooden sound puzzle features farm animals, but you can also choose vehicles, musical instruments, or other options. As an example, when kids put the cow piece in the right spot, the wooden shape will “moo” like a cow.
7. Honeysticks 100% Pure Beeswax Crayons
I don’t know about you, but I always loved coloring as a kid. Unfortunately, the crayons I used were super thin and always breaking. These Honeysticks crayons are not only thick and bulky for added durability, but they’re also made of beeswax, so they’re completely safe for your little guy to use (even if he has a tendency to put everything in his mouth, as most one-year-olds do!). This set comes with six colors, and they are extra long to make it easier for little ones to grip.
1. Vegan Non-Toxic Finger Paint
Whether you’re trying to get some painted handprints for a keepsake or just letting your little one get creative with finger painting, you’ll want to use a paint that’s completely safe. You never know when your little guy is going to stick his fingers in house mouth, and it’s not always easy to stop him! That’s why this vegan, non-toxic finger paint is a perfect choice. They’re made from natural, organic vegetables, so they’re not only safe but also eco-friendly. This set comes with a pack of five different colors that you’ll just mix with water to use.
2. Best Learning - Stack and Learn Activity
Best Learning gives the classic stacking toy a twist by adding a new educational dimension. As your child learns how to stack rings in the right order, they also can choose from one of three modes to learn about colors, animals, or numbers. As the order of the rings changes, so do the songs and sounds. This simple but educational toy encourages hand-eye coordination, logical thinking, creativity, and concentration.
3. Hape Pound and Tap Bench
Hape combined two favorite tot toys into one with this Pound and Tap Bench. Along the top, your child can use the included hammer to tap three colorful balls through the holes. As they come down, the balls land on the keys of a xylophone. If your child prefers to make his own music, he can easily play the xylophone keys himself. This award-winning toy encourages children to explore music and teaches them fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, cause and effect, and more.
4. LeapFrog Learning Friends 100 Words Book
LeapFrog provides excellent, age-appropriate educational toys for young children, and this book is no exception. Introduce your child to his first 100 words with Turtle, Tiger, and Monkey friends. The words cover categories like animals, mealtime, colors, opposites, outside, and more. To hear the word, a child simply touches it. This interactive book also plays songs and sound effects and gives fun facts.
5. Mega Blocks ABC Musical Train
Start your little boy’s building blocks set with this basic Mega Blocks ABC Musical Train! The 50-piece set teaches your child how to build and develop his motor skills. The colorful blocks highlight the alphabet, while the train’s smokestack plays songs and makes realistic noises. This is a great starter set for your child, which can be expanded with other Mega Blocks sets.
6. VTech Care for Me Learning Carrier Toy
Learning to care for a pet is a big responsibility! Teach your child early with this pet carrier toy. The puppy carrier allows him to pretend he owns and cares for a pet by feeding, combing, and playing with his plush dog. Several large, chunky buttons on the outside of the carrier light up and introduce him to more than 100 songs, the alphabet, colors, shapes, and pet care tips.
7. BEST LEARNING Learning Cube
Looking for a great way to teach your child some of the basics while also keeping them entertained? Look no further than this Best Learning learning cube. My kids totally loved this, and it offers six different sets of knowledge. Each of the six sides has a button that teaches something different, including letters, numbers, colors, animal sounds, music, and musical instruments. The color side even lights up! Plus, you’ll love that it has a volume control, so you can adjust the level of sound.
8. Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Toddler Toy Vacuum
Toys that have a practical application and teach kids skills they need for the future are some of the best. That’s why we love this cute little pretend vacuum. Your little guy can follow you around while you’re cleaning the house and help out with his own mini-version. It lights up and plays music, but that’s not all! It also has learning songs and phrases to teach your child colors, counting, and more! Perfectly sized for little hands, it also tilts up or down to get the best fit.
Best Gifts for 1-Year-Old Boys
Picking out something for a one-year-old boy can feel challenging, but anything you can find that’ll help them develop skills or learn something is a great choice. Our favorites include the Sit to Stand Learning Train for its versatility, the Melissa & Doug Sound Puzzle for its affordability, and the Best Learning Learning Cube because it’s educational and a ton of fun! Anything on this list is sure to keep your little guy entertained, so you can’t go wrong, no matter what you pick.
The best toys for 1-year-old boys introduce easy-to-grasp concepts that allow his mind to develop and grow. Interactive toys with multiple functions will keep him engaged and learning. As he learns, it’s always important to remember he will adventure with little understanding of safety, so it’s important to stick with age-appropriate toys that avoid small pieces or other safety concerns. This list is sure to keep him busy, engaged, and curious!