Sunday, 20 October 2013

Cuthberts Top 5 Toys for Babies for Christmas 2013

Here at Cuthberts we know how difficult it can be to find a perfect toy for a child at Christmas. Every year we get customers in store asking us what we recommend for a baby, a three year old boy, a five year old girl or an eight year old that is just impossible to buy for. Parents, grandparents, other relatives and friends are often confused by all the fantastic choice that is out there.

To try to make things easier for you, we're putting together a series of guides showing you what we think the top five toys are for each age range and we'll be publishing these here in the run up to Christmas.

We're going to start off with our youngest customer - babies up to one year of age. Admittedly they may not give you much verbal feedback on what you buy them for Christmas, but we understand that it's their first Christmas and you still want to make it special for them.

1. In The Night Garden - Talking Igglepiggle £14.99


Children love the characters from In The Night Garden and this Talking Igglepiggle will be no exception. This plush soft toy is very tactile and ready for a cuddle from your little one. He also plays songs and sounds from the In The Night Garden television programme which will be instantly familiar to children who watch it. Attached to Igglepiggle's hand is his iconic red blanket which some children choose to use as a comforter.

And if this Igglepiggle isn't big enough for your little one - we also have a large version!

2. Fisher Price Learn & Laugh Cookie Shape Surprise - £16.99

The Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Shape Surprise is so much more that just a shape sorter. With two different modes it detects when shapes are correctly inserted into the holes and says either the name of the shape of the number written on it. It also makes noises if you press the button that is its nose and when the lid is taken off it detects when a hand or shape goes into the jar, again rewarding the child with a phrase or music.

As well as helping young babies develop their motor skills through picking up the shapes and trying to place them inside the jar, it also helps them recognise different shapes and colours. The concept of cause and effect is also reinforced through the way that the jar will make different sounds depending on what the baby does. 

3. Lamaze Octotunes Octopus - £28.99

What's special about the Lamaze Octotune Octopus is that each of his tentacles plays a different note when squeezed. Whilst just the ability to make noises will impress a baby, mum or dad can use the included song book to play whole tunes. The tip of each tentacle is a different colour (as used in the song book to tell you which note to play) and the rest of the legs have either different patterns or textures on them to keep babies amused and develop their sense of touch. With the bright colours and friendly face this octopus is bound to become a firm favourite.

The Lamaze range contains some great toys for babies, all in their instantly recognisable bright colours and variety of textures. Their cot and buggy toys are firm favourites.

4. Woolly & Tig - Woolly Soft Toy £14.99

Woolly and Tig is another CBeebies televison programme starring a three year old girl (Tig) and her spider Woolly. Together they have lots of new experiences - whether it be going somewhere new or changes in routine - and the programme focusses on how these new experiences can make children feel. Any fears or anxiety are soon replaced with fun and laughter when children have Woolly by their side.

This Woolly Soft Toy is soft and cuddly and perfect to accompany small children when they start having new experiences in life.

5. Tomy Hide 'n' Squeak Eggs - £8.99

Tomy's Hide 'n' Squeak Eggs are part of the Play to Learn range, which aims to help educate children through play, and these eggs have become somewhat iconic, found in loads of nurseries and playgroups and they are always a hit with children.

The idea behind them is simple, you have a plastic egg carton and six eggs which fit in it. On the bottom of each egg is a shape (heart, circle, cross etc) and these correspond with shapes in the egg carton so that each egg can only go in one position. The top of the eggs' shells is removable and inside is a coloured egg which squeaks when you press it down.

Younger babies have great fun just holding the eggs and knocking the lids off to reveal the colourful insides. Then as their motor skills develop they love pressing them down to make them squeak, before moving on to learning how to place them back in the egg carton correctly. Whilst they may seem incredibly simple the possibilities for play are endless.

Cuthberts Top 5 Toys for Babies are available either online or in our stores (Hatfield Galleria, Letchworth and St Albans). If you want any more recommendations for what to buy your little ones this Christmas then please pop in and talk to our staff.

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