The 9 Best Toys for 12 Month Olds of 2021

What babies love playing with

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Green Toys Shape Sorter at Amazon

"Younger kids will enjoy grasping the lightweight shapes while older babies can practice fine motor skills and color matching."

Best Developmental: Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Learn with Puppy Walker at Amazon

"Babies will love listening to the playful songs and phrases that include the alphabet, colors, numbers, and Spanish words."

Best Musical: Baby Einstein Magic Touch Piano at Amazon

"The wooden piano has two levels of play, giving your child the ability to create their own masterpieces or play along to classics."

Best Educational: Fisher-Price Rollin’ Rovee Toy at Amazon

"With learning content including the alphabet and following directions, your kiddo will learn with the added bonus of music."

Best Sit-to-Stand: Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Chair at Amazon

"This interactive musical chair activates songs and phrases when your baby gets on and off the chair."

Best Budget: B. Toys Stacking Rings Set at Amazon

"Help develop your baby’s curiosity and introduce problem solving and hand-eye coordination with this budget-friendly pick."

Best Montessori-Style: Grimm’s 6-Piece Rainbow Stacker at Amazon

"Perfect for open-ended play, these colorful arches can be used as tunnels, houses, hills, rocking chairs for dolls, or more."

Best Ride-On: Y-Bike Pewi Walking Buddy Ride-On at Amazon

"Parents appreciate how easy it is to assemble and how well it works for early walkers through toddlers."

Best Active: VTech Count and Win Sports Center at Walmart

"Get baby's muscles moving with this pick, which features two adjustable heights so it can grow with your child."

As your baby nears their first birthday, they will likely become increasingly more mobile and more curious, a milestone that will likely inspire and challenge you. With your little one quickly growing and demanding their own physical independence, finding the right toys that will peak their interests while ushering them through their milestones is essential.

We've rounded up the most entertaining and developmentally appropriate toys for your 12-month-old.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Green Toys Shape Sorter

Made in the USA from food-safe, 100 percent recycled plastic, this shape sorter is a fun, age-appropriate toy that has longevity. Safe for kids from 6 months up, younger kids will enjoy grasping the lightweight shapes while older babies can practice fine motor skills and color matching by sorting the shapes and placing the corresponding shape into the sorter. Perfect for indoor or outdoor play, parents appreciate that the pieces are stored inside the sorter and the whole set is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning. 

Best Developmental: Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Learn with Puppy Walker

With two ways to play, this adorable puppy is the perfect pal for kiddo 6 months and up. Sitting and cruising babies will love the playful songs and phrases that include the alphabet, colors, numbers, and Spanish words that come from the puppy. As your baby flexes their muscles and begins to stand and walk, the easy-grasp handles provide sturdy support for a wobbly baby. Parents appreciate the budget-friendly price tag and three levels of learning content, depending on the baby's age and stage. 

Best Musical: Baby Einstein Magic Touch Piano

Parent reviewers praise the high-quality craftsmanship of this creative and musical toy. The wooden piano has two levels of play, giving your child the ability to create their own masterpieces or play along to some classic melodies. Three sheets of music encourage color matching to play along, perfect for older kids. Safe for babies 6 months old and up, the keys are flat, so are easily wiped clean, and multi-level volume control makes the music sound just right.

Best Educational: Fisher-Price Rollin’ Rovee Toy

Give your one-year-old an interactive friend that has four play modes that will keep them entertained from the infant phases through preschool. With learning content including the alphabet, counting, opposites, following directions, and more, your tot will love the added bonus of lights, music, and fun activities. Appropriate for so many phases, from sitting and crawling to dancing, and more, this educational toy is appreciated for its longevity of use. 

Best Sit-to-Stand: Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Chair

A chair that teaches? Yes, please! This interactive musical chair activates songs and phrases when your baby gets on and off the chair. There are over 50 sing-along songs, tunes, and phrases that’ll help your kiddo learn first words, numbers, shapes, colors, and more. Parent reviewers are pleasantly pleased with this well-loved and simple-to-use seat. One common complaint is that there’s no plug in option, so batteries are the only option. Three levels of play ensure fresh and age-appropriate content.

Best Budget: B. Toys Stacking Rings Set

Help develop your baby’s curiosity and introduce the concept of problem-solving, fine motor skills, and hand-eye coordination with this budget-friendly twist on a classic stacking toy. The five rings are each made out of different materials and feature distinct colors and textures. Safe for babies 7 months old and up, your child will love touching, building, and even chewing on these rings. 

Best Montessori-Style: Grimm’s 6-Piece Rainbow Stacker

Beautifully crafted and stylish on your playroom shelf, these rainbow stacking blocks are so versatile. Perfect for open-ended play, these colorful arches can be used as tunnels, houses, hills, rocking chairs for dolls, or more. These stacking blocks will accompany your child for a long time and can be joined with other toys time and time again.

Best Ride-On: Y-Bike Pewi Walking Buddy Ride-On

Accommodate your child’s developmental phase with this versatile walking buddy that’s useful for riding, pushing, sitting, and supported walking. Safe for babies 9 months old and up, this ride-on toy will get lots of use, indoor or out, and is best on smooth surfaces. Helping to promote balance, coordination, strength, confidence, and spatial awareness, parents appreciate how easy it is to assemble and how well it works for early walkers through toddlers. 

Best Active: VTech Count and Win Sports Center

VTech Count and Win Sports Center

Courtesy of Walmart

Toddlers will enjoy moving their muscles with this sports-themed activity toy. The soccer ball will exercise their little legs and feet while the basketball game will get tiny arms and hands working. Intended for toddlers between 12 and 36 months old, two adjustable heights means this toy grows with your child. With over 65 songs, sounds, melodies, and phrases, your tot will be encouraged to learn while having fun. Reviewers appreciate how engaging this toy is and that it’s a great option for activity, especially during cold winter months when outside play may be limited.

Why Trust Verywell Family

Maya Polton is a former marketing manager and current freelance writer who covers food, home, and parenting. She’s also the mom of a 10-year-old son, 7-year-old son, and 3-year old daughter. Her best gifts for 12 months old are toys that have longevity (and avoid loud noises). Anything that can be used for years to come is good in her book!

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