The 9 Best Toys to Buy for 6-Month-Olds in 2018

Encourage new milestones with these top-picks

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OK, Mom and Dad. We need to break some news to you: your itty-bitty newborn is growing up, and although they’ll always be your baby, you’ll always ponder in the back of your mind: How is it possible that time really does "fly?"

Six-month-olds are a joy to watch—they’re more aware of their surroundings, incredibly inquisitive, recognize faces and voices, and may be extra clingy to Mom and Dad. Babies always move at their own pace, so try not to compare your infant’s milestones to other baby’s.

In the meantime, now’s a great time and age to invest in toys that encourage hand-eye coordination, walking, standing, rocking, numbers, and more. This is also a great age to introduce pictures and colors to your baby. Here’s a great variety of sensory-oriented toys for your active, on-the-go, playful 6-month-olds.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: SmartNoggin NogginStik

SmartNoggin NogginStik

Courtesy of Amazon

Throughout every one of your 6-month-old’s milestones, this toy will be there along for the journey. It was invented by a mom and Early Intervention Specialist and comes with a pamphlet that helps parents better understand what milestones your baby should be achieving at a certain month, as well as some encouragement ideas.

Designed for use from infancy through age 1, this light-up toy helps baby learn how to track items with his eyes, and encourages grasping and holding skills. It makes a quiet rattle noise and is made of soft textures. Add this must-have, color-changing touch stick to your baby’s sensory toy collection today; it lays the foundation for sensory development.

Best for Sensory Touch: Infantino Textured Multi Ball Set

Who knew a pack of balls could be so fun! This set of six balls will help baby work on their tactile and grasping skills. As they pick up the balls they will get a different sensation and want to explore how that feels on both the hands and, of course, in their mouth. Thankfully, the balls are BPA-free so you won't worry about what they are putting in their mouth, plus these are large enough that they don't pose a choking hazard. 

Over 1,300 reviewers add that these are a great toy to add to your child's development. They are affordable and provide lots of entertainment in a quiet form. A few mentioned they might develop mold in them if your child is frequently mouthing on them or you wash them with soap and water a lot, so that's something to be mindful of.

Best for On-the-Go: Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes Musical Toy

An Amazon bestseller, this musical toy is easy to carry—it’s light, can fit in their hand—and helps baby foster his lifelong love of music. With this “baby MP3” player, brought to you by educational toy pioneer Baby Einstein, your tyke can switch between seven catchy melodies with just the touch of a large, colorful button adorned with a music note.

A popular toy for ages 3 to 36 months, with a sturdy handle, this item promotes music appreciation and auditory development by introducing your 6-month-old to baby-friendly versions of classic tunes by celebrated composers including Mozart, Vivaldi, Chopin, and Rossini. Every time a melody plays, colorful lights blink onscreen to enhance visual perception and keep them engaged. The volume control is music to mom and dad’s ears—and a nice touch. 

This toy is great for on-the-go because you can easily pack it away and whip it out for a few minutes of entertainment. 

Best for Stroller: Manhattan Toy Baby Whoozit

Part of Manhattan Toy's award-winning Whoozit collection, this plush toy, which attaches to a stroller or car seat via velcro, has been around for more than 15 years. This is a classic, soft, multi-sensory activity toy, with a big smiling grin (babies love faces), bright colors and patterns, and various textures. This toy captivates baby and easily grabs (and holds) her attention. There’s so much for baby to grab, hold, so and see with this plush.

Baby Whoozit’s pillow-like round body is super soft, which is nice for cuddling. There are seven—yes, seven—arms attached to Whoozit, which make little noises, crinkle, squeak, rattle, and more. Baby Whoozit also has loops that are easy for baby to grip. This toy is chock-full of auditory stimulation. Watch baby lift Whoozit’s nose to find a special surprise underneath—a tiny mirror. 

Best for Feeding: Sassy Fishy Fascination Station

This brightly colored aquatic-themed station has many wonderful textures to touch, but is simple and not overwhelming for baby. There’s a spinning wheel, which strengthens hand-eye coordination, and each feature on the wheel spins individually when baby bats at it, which is considered a sensory cause and effect. The colorful beads trapped within the station’s clear structures allow baby to connect the sound to sight, and the handle is multi-textured, which baby may gnaw on as she teethes.

This product can be suctioned to a baby's highchair tray or any other flat surface making a great distraction at feeding time or in a restaurant. It’s a long-lasting, cause-and-effect toy. The base part can be removed for easy transport and so baby can play with just the station section. Reviewers state this toy keeps their baby busy in restaurants and sticks “really well” if you wet the suction base first.

Best Teething: Baby Banana Infant Training Toothbrush and Teether

It is never too early to teach your child about dental hygiene and if you can pair that with some teething relief and sensory fun, we've got a winner. This adorable silicone baby banana looks so funny when baby sucks and chews on it. The "peel" keeps it from gagging the baby so you won't have to worry about them choking. Soft bristles will massage the gums and the silicone texture is also a fun thing to feel in their mouth. 

This product has over 7,000 reviews, with parents calling it a quality product that's both soft and soothing for cranky teethers. 

Best for Tummy Time: Earlyears Fill ‘N Fun Water Play Mat for Tummy Time

Tummy time is essential for your baby's physical development. Since babies sleep on their back now it is essential for us parents to place them on their stomach during supervised playtime. This will help them develop muscles in their core, back, shoulders, and neck which will be the foundation for them learning how to crawl, walk, and eventually run. 

A lot of infants protest their daily tummy time—so to help distract them from their daily exercise you can use toys like this water mat to help them work out! 

Fill this mat with tap water and place your baby on it on their stomach they'll get a kick out of the tactile sensation they get when they press and move the sea creatures around. They'll have some much fun with this they'll forget they're even doing tummy time. 

Best Stacking: The First Years Stack and Count Cups

At first glance, these appear to be just set of cups stacked together but believe us they are so much more. At 6 months, baby will start to explore their stacking skills and they'll get hours of entertainment out of fitting these colorful cups together. Even before they're 6 months, these toys make a great addition to the bathtime routine as baby can watch you fill them up with water and see how the water trickles out of the bottom of each cup.

While this toy may seem super simple, it teaches your child a lot of important skills and they'll find many ways to incorporate these into their play over the next few years.

Best Book: The Very Hungry Caterpillar

It is never too early to start reading to your child. If you are looking for another book to add to your child's shelf or looking to gift a book you really can't go wrong with this 1969 classic that just seems to get better with age. Your child will get to view the beautiful illustrations and words by Eric Carle as he sees how a caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly. 

This book is in a board version so no need to worry about your little one getting paper cuts and they will enjoy helping you turn the pages. If your child is as enamored with this book, you can add more of Carle's to your collection. 

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