Toy Rotation Sparks Elation! (9-12 Months: Week 2) | Simplify Your Life

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This week’s toy rotation starts with our beloved Grimm’s Holz Rainbow Stacker. The options for open-ended play and creative games are endless with this toy, and it’s sure to grow with the children.

If I had one regret, it’s not springing for the larger model. After all, there’s no need to get out all the pieces from when they are tiny, and the larger pieces would just provide more options when they get older. But I may well sell my small rainbow on and buy the bigger one later! Here are just a few examples of ways people have found to make the most of this fab toy.

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Next we have a treasure basket; this week it has a rainbow & wood theme:

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Starting from the top left, we have a firm favourite by Melissa & Doug, somewhat clunkily named the Colour-Flap Mirror Wooden Clacking Toy. However, it’s a pretty apt name! There a lots of learning opportunities with this toy: colours, fine motor skills, object permanence (as the mirror appears & disappears) – as well as sense of self, and the pleasing sound it makes! It’s another one I am slightly addicted to fiddling with myself…

Next a wooden picture book we originally found in a charity shop & repaired, but I discovered it’s part of a set which I have my eye on, since Bean is totally obsessed with it!

There follows an elasticated wooden hippo toy from Wilko, the rainbow bangle from our DIY Ring Stacker, another charity shop wooden book and one of the toys from our Ikea playgym.

The boys love exploring the warm texture of the wooden items, and are getting to be experts at manipulating the moving parts.

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In my last post I mentioned the prohibitive cost of baskets & trays, and that I have been using cardboard boxes as a thrift substitute. Well last week I came upon these lovely basket/trays in Home Bargains for £2.50! We’ll be road-testing them this week and I will let you know how they work out.

As of this week our boys turned 11 months and are suddenly reaching much higher! Which is a mixed blessing… I have had to remove the toy storage from this level or they would pull everything out every time – I have filled the gap with two handmade dinosaur soft toys – really because they are speedy to tidy up! They were a gift from a craft fair, but you can find similar ones here. My teddy experiment last week didn’t go so well, they still aren’t that interested in soft toys. But I will continue to road test our collection before deciding which ones to remove from the rotation.

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Our music basket this week features a percussive egg, a bell, a handheld drum and a homemade rattle made from a water bottle and some pearl barley.

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We have a Classic Manhattan Toys Skwish – again, sticking with our rainbow theme. This toy encourages fine motor skills and makes a lovely clackety noise – although I suspect they are outgrowing it so I will keep a close eye on whether they engage with it this week.

In my pursuit of decluttering, I am donating almost all the baby gear from the boys and plan to repurchase stuff second hand for the next baby. But the Skwish has been such a hit that it’s one toy I’ll be storing for the next little squish!

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Finally, we come to our book nook. We have a bit of a rabbity theme for spring, as well as one of our favourite stories, featuring twins! What I love about this book is that it emphasises the ‘two-ness’ of twins. About how sometimes they do different things or don’t dress the same, as well as liking to be together at other times. This is important in establishing individuality and not treating the boys like book-ends!

What’s on your shelves this week? Or are you new to the concept of toy rotation? Comment below to let us know!

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