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Nicole Gallucci

Holiday Gift Guide for Toddlers

Now that 'Baby's First Christmas' presents are no longer an option, it's time to get creative with your gift-giving. We've found the perfect toys for toddlers of all ages.

Say goodbye to the days of rattles and teethers! Toddlerhood opens up a whole new world of games and toys, some more advanced than you ever thought possible. From classic shape sorters to sporty new bikes, these toys will elicit some major holiday squeals.

12-18 Months
18-24 Months
2+ Years
3+ Years

12-18 Months

Photo: Hanna Andersson

Hanna Andersson Night Night Baby Sleepers

Festive jammies are to Christmas what pumpkin pie is to Thanksgiving: the sweet holiday topper. And this pair, in soft organic cotton, keeps baby cozy and Christmas-card cute. Buy it: $27,

Photo: The Manhattan Toy Company

Manhattan Toy Company Tree Top Adventure

A super-interactive toy—with no batteries required? Yep, this is it. The four wooden quadrants feature enough bead runs and gliders to keep your little one occupied for hours, long after all the gifts have been unwrapped. Buy it: $80,

Photo: Manhattan Toy Company

Giggle Hippo Stacker

Three rings build one adorable hippo; these soft, patterned pieces teach your toddler to stack, mix and match. Buy it: $20, Amazon

Photo: Mirari Toys

Mirari Pop Pop Piano

If only all piano lessons were this fun. Every push of a key on this piano creates exciting sounds and sends a colorful star up into the air. The mind-blowing visual actually teaches kids cause and effect. Buy it: $26,

Photo: Amazon

Water Squirties Ocean Animals

Bath time becomes a lot of fun once your little one hits the one-year mark. Start with these easy-to-squeeze underwater animal squirties that bob and float, keeping baby engaged while you scrub. Buy it: $16, Amazon

18-24 Months

Photo: Amazon

Burt's Bees Baby Thermal Dress & Legging Set

Let's give credit where credit is due: The athleisure trend began with babies. This casually cute sweatpant and ruffled-shirt combo is festive (and comfy) enough to keep baby girl partying from Christmas till her next Gymboree class. Buy it: $22,

Photo: Brimful

Snail Sortroller

Your toddler will love pulling this colorful snail pal around the house. Fitting the wooden shapes through the sorter is challenging, but tackling it gets more fun as your child builds coordination skills. Buy it: $65,

Photo: Tegu

Tegu Magbot

A futuristic robot and a classic toy in one, Magbot is made out of eco-friendly wooden blocks. Thanks to his magnetic pieces, he can transform into something different each time your child plays. Buy it: $30,

Photo: Micro

Micro Mini2Go

This convertible toy can transform into a ride-on or scooter, using lean-to steering so kids can develop balance and coordination as they ride. The wheels are safe for indoor and outdoor use, making this an all-terrain vehicle. Buy it: $130,

Photo: Sprout San Francisco

Maple Landmark Spinny Speller

Encourage early reading skills with this hardwood toy, whose block-printed letters spin to spell dozens of three-letter words. Sure, your toddler might spend most of his or her time gnawing on it. But that's okay too; the natural dyes and water-based finishes make it completely safe. Buy it: $10,

2+ Years

Photo: The Elf On The Shelf

The Elf on the Shelf Library

This festive set of board books is a must-have for your toddler’s library and your parenting arsenal. It's the storytime reminder that Elf on the Shelf is always watching. Good behavior, guaranteed. Buy it: $20,

Photo: Toys R Us

Radio Flyer Glide & Go Balance Bike

A Radio Flyer under the tree is the stuff of Christmas magic. Without the pedals or the hassle of training wheels, Glide and Go encourages toddlers to focus on balance, giving your little one some big confidence. Buy it: $49, Amazon

Photo: Lilliputiens

Jef Building Pyramid

Decked out with colorful characters, vehicles and numbers, these lightweight nesting blocks are easy to bring anywhere—say, a playdate at Grandma's house? Buy it: $37,

Photo: Tiggly

Tiggly Shapes Game for iPad

Already have a gifted tablet user on your hands? Screen time can be fun and educational with this set of four silicone geometric shapes made just for your iPad. When paired with a free app, they're are used as game pieces to help your toddler learn to identify, sort and build with shapes. Buy it: $24,

Photo: BeginAgain

BeginAgain Don't Dump Dumpty Game

Like the classic game Don't Break the Ice with a nursery rhyme twist, this versatile wooden game demos cause and effect as your child tries to prevent Humpty Dumpty from falling. But this time, you can always put things back together, using the numbered bricks to practice counting in the process. Buy it: $25, Amazon

3+ Years

Photo: The Moodsters

The Moodsters Feelings Flashlight

A toy line designed specifically to boost your child's emotional intelligence quotient, The Moodsters uses stories and characters to help children identify their feelings. This flashlight is a great example of helping your little one (literally) shine a light on any afraid-of-the-dark fears. Buy it: $16, Amazon

Photo: Land Of Nod

Metro Line Train Set

Way cooler than your childhood locomotive, this 25-piece train set comes complete with train tracks, trains, bridges and skyscrapers. And each and every piece is made from all-natural materials. Buy it: $199,

Photo: Plan Toys

Plan Toys Balancing Tree

Master the balancing act of playing and learning with this tree toy. Load up the branches with birds depending on the color the dice tell you, being careful not to knock them down. Buy it: $15,

Photo: Giggle

Hape Cook 'n Serve Kitchen

The special of the day? This wooden kitchen complete with an oven, pull-out counter and chalk boards. So you can reasonably expect Christmas dinner prepared by your toddler this time next year. Buy it: $129, Amazon

Photo: Amazon

Snowball Maker

Take your pick: watch Frozen for the 83rd time, or head outside and let your child build his or her own Olaf. Easy decision, right? Even easier: using this sturdy plastic snow ball mold set to get that snowman underway. Buy it: $9, Amazon

Need more holiday shopping inspiration? Check out our baby gift guide and gift guide for moms.