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What to Buy a 1 Year Old: 50 Affordable Toddler Gift Ideas 2020

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Gift Ideas for a Toddler

These days you are probably getting frequent invites to toddler birthday parties and wondering what to buy especially what to buy for a 1 year old baby! Buying gifts for toddlers can be very challenging. Not only do you have to please the child, you also want the parents to love your gift too! Your gift needs to be able to hold the child’s attention but be quiet enough to not annoy the parents.

It can be difficult trying to decided the best things to buy a 1 year old when you you’re not a parent yet and, believe it or not, even when you are. So today, lets explore what to buy a one year old so you’re prepared for the next birthday part or even Christmas! As a mom to a 16 month old, who loves peace and quiet, I approve everything on this list and so does my daughter!

What to get a 1 year old:

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What to Buy a 1 Year Old for Hand-Eye Coordination:

Hand-eye coordination is essential to avoid a delay in writing and reading development. There is also a strong correlation between hand-eye coordination, learning abilities, and social communication skills.

Top Bright Activity Cube 

This is perfect for making learning fun. It comes with 5 different activities and will keep a toddler busy for sure!

Fajiabao Bath Toys for Toddlers

I love this because it can be used both in and out of the tub. If you do decide to use it in the water, make sure to get one of these too!

Zeavola Baby Bell

Ready to help your baby develop their sense of rhythm? These will help, but be sure to keep baby supervised.


Playkidz Super Durable Pound a Ball

This always becomes a fast favorite for any 1 year old who receives it. The best part is they will continue to want to play with it even as they get older. It’s definitely worth it!


This is such a classic item for toddlers. My daughter loves it and it’s not too loud for me!

Musical Duck

Looking for something attention grabbing? You’ve found it! The colors, songs, and other sounds will keep them entertained.

Touch and Swipe Baby Phone

Tired of your cell phone being community property? This is the perfect solution.

Touch and Feel Puzzle

There’s something about the feel of different textures that’s really exciting for kids at this age. It’s amazing. This puzzle is also perfect for helping them recognize different animals. Take it a step further and help them learn their animal sounds!

First Steps in Music

The included sheet music sets this apart. Make it a bonding activity while you play tunes for your little one.

What to Buy a 1 Year Old to Foster Role Play:

Role play allows children to experiment with different aspects of life and seeing what happens. It builds confidence while letting a child’s creative juices flow. As parents, it allows us to see how our children are interpreting our actions. Remember, they are always watching and listening.

Fisher Price Chatter Telephone 

What toddler doesn’t like the telephone? This classic gift will have you reflecting on your childhood.

Laugh & Learn Fruits and Fun Learning Market

This will grow with your child. The smart stages technology allows you to take your toddler to higher levels as they are ready for it.


Little People’s Noah’s Ark 

Don’t be surprised if you see your baby start carrying this around everywhere. This is definitely one that kids really enjoy.

Roll and Learn Activity Suitcase 

It’s fun to pretend to travel. This can help make traveling less chaotic when it happens for real!

My FirstLearning Tablet 

Thank goodness for this tablet! Now you can get yours back. It allows role play plus introduces letters, numbers, and colors.

Cook N Grow Kitchen 

One good thing about this is that it’s adjustable! That makes it easy to use as your baby grows. Plus, a play kitchen is just an absolute must.

What to Buy a 1 Year Old to Help Develop Motor Skills:

When babies first start moving around, its awkward and clumsy. The need both fine and gross motor skills to help them get stronger and be independent movers. It’s these skills that will help them walk, feed themselves, dress themselves, and write. These items make the perfect gift for 1 year olds to work on whole body movement and using their hands and wrist.

 Mega Bloks

This is another gift that can actually grow with a 1 year old. Be sure to hang on to the bag though as it makes clean up a breeze. I’ve used it to teach my daughter the concept of cleaning up and she enjoys putting her bloks bag in the bag.

Sports Center

Don’t let the name sports center turn you off. This is perfect for boys and girls!

Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Smart Stages Puppy

Every baby I have met has thoroughly loved this gift. It’s anther one that grows with them and they can play with for years to come.  

Wooden Jigsaw Puzzle

This is small, but the perfect size for a 1 year old. The cloth carrying bag helps everything stay neat and clean once play time is over.

Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Zoo Animal Puzzle 

This really helps baby to start thinking as they have to figure out where every animal goes. They will tickled with the animal sounds the receive once they match things up.

VTech Flashlight 

If you are looking for an interactive gift, this is it! It also helps them feel safe at night.

VTech Turn and Learn Driver

Perfect gift to keep them entertained during car rides. My daughter has had this since she was 6 months and still wants to play with it now.

First Years Stack up Cups

Don’t underestimate all that this gift has to offer. It’s very versatile and teaches motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and language development. It does it all!

Dance and Move BeatsBow Wow

Looking for fun for both the parents and the baby? Then this fits the bill. Everyone can have a good time dancing to the beats.

2-in-1 Sit to Stand Activity Center

This is a “grow with me” activity center. Most moms would agree that the toys are all engaging and serve a purpose.

VTech Sit to Stand Learning Walker

My favorite feature with this is that you can adjust the speed on the wheels and it’s easy to put together!

Corn Popper Push Toy

Another classic gift! My daughter loves to pretend that it’s a vacuum cleaner. I don’t mind because it allows me to get the real vacuuming done!

ABC Learning Train

Great way to reinforce the alphabets while also having fun.

VTech Sing and Discover Piano

The pretend microphone is a big hit and an attention grabber!

Playgro Music and Lights Comfy Car

The removable dash is great for entertaining my daughter in her pack n play while I try to cook dinner or clean up. There are so many different ways to use this gift I’m always amazed. 

Dance and Groove Rockit

Very well built and works great in the dark.

Pop and Giggle Pond Pal

Repetition is great for toddlers and this gift definitely delivers on this. Toddlers are equally amazed every time the see a ball spit out.

Alpha Pup

Parents will love this gift as it teaches toddlers speech phrases that are perfect for playing well with others.

Fisher Price Learning Table 

This makes for great entertainment in the carseat when the legs are removed.

Feed Me Cookie Monster

Your toddle will have so much fun feeding cookies to Cookie Monster. It’s a great way to encourage them to eat their food as well.

Gallop and Rock Learning Pony

What kid wouldn’t enjoy a rocking horse? Especially one that makes sounds and plays songs.

What to Buy a 1 Year Old to Encourage Open Ended Play:

Children have so much imagination but unfortunately they don’t get a lot of opportunities to explore it. It’s important to be able to play without expectations or directions. Open ended play gives toddlers their much needed freedom.

Ball Pit 

We had one of these at my daughter’s birthday and it was a huge hit. She loves and expects me to get inside and play with her too! Make sure to get extras of this .

Baby Amaze Pretend and Discover Kitty

This gift teaches nurturing and empathy. It’s funny to see how they think we take care of them.

Smart Stages Piggy Bank

Very durable and also great for teaching fine motor skills.

Portable Toddler Lap Tray

This gift is perfect as it allows toddlers to play wherever they are. Perfect gift for toddlers and the parents will be very appreciative too.

Textured Balls

We like to use these to teach my daughter how to catch and throw a ball. She really loves playing with these.

What to Buy a 1 Year Old to help with Language Development:

By the age of two, a toddler should know 50-75 words. Repetition is what allows babies to learn language. It’s important to talk to your kids as much as possible and to keep going over the same words.

Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Tablet

Great learning tool. It’s amazing to see how much the retain. We use it in the car the most.

Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Record Player

Not only does the help with learning English it also introduces Spanish too!

Leap Frog Learning Friends 100 Words

Great concept and definitely helps with language development.

What Books to Buy a 1 Year Old:

We have grown up learning that reading is fundamental and that’s because it is. Reading helps with language development and socialization. Some believe that reading also plays a role in literacy. Outside of these things, its a nice way to bond with your child and get in some snuggles!

First 100 Animals

Great introduction to animals and a fun way to work on animal sounds.

First 100 Words

Great book for learning words. Be sure to get the hardback copy.

Dream Big Little One

Great representation of diversity and shows minority little girls faces that looks like theirs.

Dear Zoo

This is lift flap book that will really hold a child’s attention while also teaching them animals.

Where is Baby’s Belly Button 

Fun way for kids to learn the parts of the body.

You will look like the best gift giver ever if you show up to a Birthday Party or Christmas with a gift from this list!


What to buy a 1 year old

As you can see, there a lot of great gifts for 1 year olds. You just have to decide how you want to your gift to be used. Do you want something educational, something to help with development, or a gift that’s just good ole fashioned fun? Either way, there are a lot of top gifts for 1 year olds in this guide so whichever option you pick is one they are sure to enjoy. Now, just get to shopping! 

What’s your favorite gift for a 1 Year Old? Share with us below!

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