The 7 Best Developmental Toys to Buy for 6 Month Olds in 2018

Inspire their senses with these fine-tuned picks

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By the time your little one hits the 6-month-old mark, she is probably well on her way to developing all sorts of fun skills all by herself. Besides being able to grasp and hold objects, potentially move things back and forth between hands, and follow you around the room with her eyes, she might be gaining even better control of her head and neck muscles, and perhaps she’s even well on her way to sitting up on her own, if she isn’t already.

Even if your baby seems to be doing just fine developing tons of skills on her own, as a parent, there’s a lot you can do to help perfect these developmental skills, with everything from tummy time to guided play. In fact, with the right toy in those little ​hands, you can help advance important developments like sensory and motor skills, as well as cognitive and language abilities, among many others.

There are a lot of developmental toys on the market today, and most of them help develop multiple systems all at once. To help you home in on the best toys for your 6-month-old based on the skills you are hoping to help develop, we did a little research. Here are some great options to consider.​

Our Top Picks


Best Overall: Fisher-Price 3-in-1 Convertible Car Gym

If you’re looking to get the best bang for your buck when it comes to a developmental toy, you’ll likely want to find one that covers a myriad of bases. That’s why play mats are so great. Most come with so many bells and whistles that you can be sure your baby is working on those fine and gross motor skills, all while lighting up multiple senses at the same time.

The Fisher-Price 3-in-1 Convertible Car Gym is a fun option as a multi developmental toy for your baby because there are so many ways to play that it’s impossible for him to get bored. This mat comes with things that dangle and light up, make noise and move. Your kid can lay flat on his back and play, perfect tummy time while staying engaged and entertained, or even sit up and “drive” around.


Best for Fine Motor Skills: The First Years Stack Up Cups

Essentially any activity your 6-month-old tackles that ​involve the smaller movements of his hands, wrists, and fingers, etc., will help him develop those all-important fine motor skills, so there’s really no need to break the bank buying an incredibly fancy toy for this one. That’s why we love The First Years Stack & Count Cups. Not only were they specifically developed for little 6-month-old fingers to be able to grasp and hold easily, but the bright colors will help your kid stay engaged, too.

As an added bonus, there are tons of different ways to play with stacking cups, from fitting them into each other and stacking them, to hiding things away in them and under them. You can even bring these cups into the bath to make them bath time toys. The cups, which are Amazon Best Sellers, are cheap, durable, and multifunctional—basically everything a parent wants in a baby product.​ Plus, your kid will continue to play with these in a variety of ways over the years, so they don't have a short shelf-life.


Best for Sensory Skills: Hedstrom Sensory Shapes

Sensory play is an essential part of your baby’s development that will help her work on vision, hearing, and touch, among other things. When it comes to baby toys, anything with bright colors and multiple textures is a good start.

Hedstrom’s Sensory Shapes are great because they are simple to play with and easy for tiny hands to hold, plus they come in six bright colors and shapes and the bumpy outer surface will be a different sensation for your child to get used to touching.


Best for Gross Motor Skills: Fisher-Price Go Baby Go! 1-2-3 Crawl Along Snail

You might not think your 6-month-old needs to develop her gross motor skills just yet, but now is actually the perfect time to get her working on those larger movements that will lead to crawling and—eventually—walking.

Fisher-Price’s Go Baby Go! 1-2-3 Crawl Along Snail is a fun toy for your baby whether she’s rolling over and sitting up or still working on those particular skills. You can play with the toy in many ways based on your baby’s current development, from tummy time to sitting up to crawling, when the snail will guide your baby forward with its fun music and lights.


Best for Cognitive Skills: SmartNoggin NogginStik Developmental Light-Up Rattle

Believe it or not, a toy that’s as simple as a rattle can help your baby develop cognitive skills like thinking, reasoning, and paying attention. We like the NoggingStik by SmartNoggin not only because it’s adorable, but because it’s so much more than a traditional rattle. With a light-up head, soft rattling sound, easy-to-grasp handle, and multiple textures, your baby will stay entertained by this simple toy (which is so nice), all while working on some important developmental milestones, as well.


Best for Social Skills: Sassy Floor Mirror

If you’ve noticed your 6-month-old has started paying more attention to the people around him, now’s the perfect time to build on those social skills, and providing him with a fun and safe floor mirror is a great way to do that. The Sassy Floor Mirror—an Amazon Best Seller—is a large, non-breakable mirror surrounded by a soft frame that stands up easily on its own. The bright colors will pique your kid’s visual interests, as well.


Best for Language Development: VTech Sing and Squeak Bath Book

Books are an obvious choice when it comes to helping your baby develop language skills, but we like the VTech Sing and Squeak Bath Book because it’s so much more than your average baby book. As a floating waterproof story that focuses on language development and counting, adding this toy to your kid’s story repertoire means you can introduce a little more fun into your bath routine while still focusing on developing some important skills.

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