The first birthday is a significant milestone in the life of a child. It is a day to celebrate and reflect on the amazing progress your little one has made in such a short time.
There are many ways to commemorate this special occasion. Some parents opt for a simple party with close family and friends, while others go all out with an elaborate theme and decorations. No matter what you have planned, there are some excellent baby 1st birthday gift ideas to help make the day even more special.
Let’s look at eight fantastic 1st birthday gift ideas.
8 Best 1st Birthday Gift Ideas
While every 1 year old is different, these eight gift ideas can help guide you on what to get a baby for their first birthday.
1. Activity Cube
This is a multiple-in-one toy that allows little ones to learn through educational play. Each side of the cube has a different activity that is not only fun but also works to improve coordination and fine motor skills. The activity cube features five sensory-stimulating activities: spinners, cogs and wheels, abacus beads, a shape sorter, a mirror, and more.
It is one of the first birthday present ideas that is sure to improve your little one’s cognition, as well as social, communication, and counting skills.
Note, however, that some manufacturers recommend these activity cubes for 1 year old children while others recommend them for children 18 months and over. For this reason, supervision might be necessary during the use of this toy.
2. Cause and Effect Toys
A cause-and-effect toy produces a reaction when a child makes an action on it. For example, if a child pushes a button, a song plays, or if they pull a lever, a ball pops out. These toys can help babies learn that their actions affect their environment, which is a critical lesson in child development.
The Pound-A-Ball is a great choice for baby first birthday gifts because it is highly stimulating and simple enough for them to grasp quickly. By gripping the hammer and hitting the balls, the child becomes more dexterous and improves their hand-eye coordination.
The Pull and Sing is another great toy that teaches cause-and-effect while improving gross motor skills. It involves the child pulling on a string to activate music, words, and other fun sounds. This toy is not only great for sensory stimulation from lights and sounds but is also helpful for language development as you can use it to introduce concepts like colors, parts of the body, and numbers.
3. Baby Musical Set
Babies love music. And it’s good for them too. A study from the Institute of Learning and Brain Sciences showed that when babies listen to music, their brains are stimulated. And it’s even better when they actually use their tiny hands to make musical sounds because playing music is an active play that improves fine motor skills, creativity, and precision.
The Rockin’ Light Up Guitar is one of the best first birthday gifts for little ones. The guitar has two volume levels as well as two playing modes — one where your child can play their own melodies and another where the guitar produces beautiful preprogrammed chords. This kind of toy is very interactive and promotes hand coordination, music skills, and creativity.
4. Montessori Sensory Stacking Blocks / Stacking Rings
Sensory stacking blocks are one of the first birthdays presents that the 1 year old will use heavily and often for a long time. This kind of toy provides a lot of sensory stimulation and wonder due to the different textures of the fruits, patterns, letters, and numbers inscribed on the blocks’ sides.
The ones that are squeezable and produce a squeaky sound are fascinating to young children. These blocks also foster development by introducing the concepts of positioning and balance. They also make good chewing toys — just ensure they’re non-toxic and BPA-free.
Like the blocks, stacking rings promote creativity and help babies understand the concept of size.
5. Bath Toys
At 12 months of age, babies become more engaged in daily activities such as bathtime. Make their experience more enjoyable by getting them an enthralling bathtime toy.
They can be basic floating or squeezing toys that promote hand-eye coordination and action-reaction concepts. Or they can be more intricate toys like a waterfall set that supports critical thinking and teaches the baby how water behaves.
An example of a great bath toy is the bath squirt. It’s so simply thrilling that you might find yourself or your older kids using it. The bath squirt comes in different attractive colors and characters and is easy to use and clean.
6. Baby vehicles
As we mentioned above, children become more active, expressive, and adventurous at one. And because they are learning to walk or are already walking, they may want to use their legs in other ways, such as cycling.
The classic Little Tikes Cozy Coupe is a favorite among small children. On this list of first birthday gifts, it is the one that’s been around the longest — over 30 years. Parents love it because it is long-lasting and allows children to have fun riding safely. It’s also a gift that can be handed down to other children for many years.
Another great gift on wheels for a 1 year old is the Scuttlebug. It is a simple, light, colorful trike your child will want to use daily. The Scuttlebug is also foldable, making it ideal for camping trips or days in the park. This toy can help your child develop steering and balance skills.
Finally, we have the evolving smarTrike, which is very attractive as a first birthday gift because it offers extended use. It starts as a baby stroller at six months and grows with your child in 6 stages, finally turning into a fully independent trike.
7. Baby Books
Around the age of 1, babies start to enjoy reading illustrated stories. Books are great 1st birthday gifts since reading is an activity you can do with your child and watch as their comprehension of storylines and vocabulary grows.
At this age, though, children tend to rip pages, so you should look for books with padded board pages. Not only are they hard to tear, but the thickness of board pages also makes it easy for the baby to grasp the pages with their tiny hands.
One book that makes an excellent 1st birthday gift is First 100 Words. It is the perfect book for a one-year-old since, at this age, their vocabulary is rapidly expanding. It helps them communicate by teaching them words central to their daily life. The book also comes with colorful illustrations to keep the little one engaged.
8. Montessori Learning Tower / Ladder
Finally, we have the learning tower. It is one of the best 1st birthday present ideas for your one-year-old because it allows you to involve and keep an eye on your child while doing focused activities such as cooking. This learning tower can help to increase bonding time and make your toddler feel confident, included, and independent.
Unlike a chair or table, a learning tower is designed to give the perfect elevation height while keeping the child safe from falling. Just make sure you get a sturdy one.
A Gift For Both Of You
Apart from the 1st birthday gift ideas which we’ve looked at above, another gift you should consider is getting an au pair to help with your child care. Doing so will benefit parents because they can have peace of mind knowing their tiny tot is getting quality care. Plus, children benefit from this gift as they can create meaningful relationships with the in-house au pairs that care for them.
Go Au Pair is here to help you find the best au pair that will fit right into your family situation. Contact us for more information.