13 Best Montessori Toys For 1 Year Olds

montessori toys for 1 year olds

Montessori toys are educational tools for young children to learn with a hands-on approach. While a one-year-old likely isn’t solving complex math problems or juggling bowling pins.

Montessori toys for 1-year-olds can help teach skills that nurture childhood learning and are the building blocks for healthy mental development.

Continue reading to discover the 13 best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds for hands-on learning that develop skills your young ones will use for the rest of their lives. 

13 Best Montessori Toys For 1-Year-Olds

Playtime and learning go hand in hand with these 13 fantastic Montessori toys for 1-year-olds below. 

Musical Instruments

Musical instruments are one of the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds because they teach a wide range of skills. 

Some of the best musical instruments for one-year-olds include the following: 

  • Baby shakers
  • Rainmakers
  • Baby drums 
  • Xylophones 
  • Tambourines 
  • Ukeleles 

Musical instruments teach fine motor skills like how to strum a guitar, how hard to hit a drum, or how to grasp mallets for a xylophone. Moreover, they support sensory development and hand-eye coordination. 

Not only will parents watch their little one’s faces light up with a smile, but introducing young kids to music encourages brain development and self-esteem as they see proof of how their actions can make an impact. 

Push Toy

Little ones get hours of fun with push toys. Meanwhile, parents can feel good knowing their one-year-old is learning gross motor skills like balance, coordination, and strength. 

Push toys have wheels and a handlebar that encourages young ones to stand, grasp, push, pull, and walk with support. Some push toys resemble lawnmowers, while others are shaped like cars to encourage two children to play together while one “drives” and the other pushes. 

Babies need help with body and spatial awareness, and a push toy nurtures this awareness. Your little one will begin to learn how to problem-solve as they try to push their toy in a tight space or around a corner. 

Car/Bike Tracking Toy

Car and bike track toys are among the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds because they focus on developing motor and problem-solving skills. 

Not only are toy cars and bikes fun to play with, but they also teach fine motor skills like grasping a car and placing it on the track. Plus, as little ones encounter traffic jams, they’ll get excited to practice their fine motor and problem-solving skills by picking up obstacles and moving them out of the way to clear the track. 

Gross motor skills are also at play with car and bike track toys as your one-year-old reaches bends, pushes, or pulls. 

Stacking Toy

Stacking toys are one of the most popular Montessori toys for 1-year-olds because they are simple to play with yet offer incredible learning opportunities with each playtime. 

Some of the best stacking toys for one-year-olds include the following: 

  • Wooden blocks 
  • Colored rings 
  • Bowls or cups 

Stacking toys focus on developing fine and gross motor skills because a child has to learn how to position their hands to grasp a block, gently place it down, reach for another block, and more. 

Building blocks encourage cognitive learning, like spatial awareness. Plus, some stacking toys feature designs that expose young kids to the alphabet, colors, and single-digit numbers early in life. 

Also Read:Montessori VS Traditional School System

Wooden Puzzle

Wooden puzzles are one of the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds because puzzles encourage memory, fine motor, gross motor, and problem-solving skills. 

When completing a wooden puzzle, your one-year-old will start to learn and recognize shapes and colors. Meanwhile, they’ll develop their fine and gross motor skills as they reach for new pieces, hold them, and place them in their correct spot. 

Puzzles encourage problem-solving as your child uses the shapes and colors to determine where the piece must go. 

Wooden puzzles are best for early childhood development because the textured, natural material creates a sensory experience that instills a connection with nature. 

Also Read: Discipline In Montessori

Climbing Toy

Climbing toys are a fun way for little ones to develop their gross motor skills. Climbing toys for one-year-olds are small jungle gyms that teach kids to build strength as they learn to stand and climb. 

Alongside gross motor skills, climbing toys teach little ones problem-solving, spatial awareness, and bodily awareness. Your child will have to problem-solve how to position themselves to reach the next step, which requires physical and spatial awareness. 

Another fantastic benefit of climbing toys for tots is increased self-esteem. As they reach the next step and learn how to climb, they’ll begin to develop bodily autonomy and self-assurance. 

Spinning Top

While your one-year-old won’t be solving geometry questions immediately, spinning tops provide early exposure to mathematical concepts like geometry and symmetry. 

A spinning top toy teaches fine motor skills as a child learns how to grasp and spin during playtime. It also teaches patience as the child learns to wait for the toy to finish turning before trying again. 

Parents can add an artistic element to playtime by dipping the bottom of the spinning toy in ink or paint and encouraging their child to spin it on a sheet of blank paper to create a beautiful piece of art worthy of the fridge. 

Realistic Baby Doll

Baby doll toys are exceptional hands-on learning opportunities for children. Realistic baby dolls teach young kids social and emotional skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. 

A child can learn about empathy by caring for and paying attention to their baby doll toy. Moreover, a doll teaches fine motor skills as they learn to hold it, carry it, and place it down. 

Another fantastic benefit of realistic baby dolls is that they encourage children to play pretend, increasing their ability to think imaginatively and creatively. 

Dolls are also incredible toys that can help teach young children about the names and places of basic body parts. 

Wobble Board

Wobble boards are one of the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds that encourage balance as kids develop gross motor skills.

Wobble boards activate the core muscles of your little ones to help build strength to support their body weight as they learn to sit upright, stand, climb, dance, and play. 

Not only are wobble boards fun toys that kids enjoy using, but they also provide early lessons on stability and activate the muscles that lead to good posture. 

A wobble board for a one-year-old is a fantastic way to include vestibular stimulation in their upbringing as they rock from side to side and learn techniques for self-soothing. 

Object Permanence Toy

Object permanence is when a young child begins to learn that an object still exists even though it is no longer in sight. This developmental milestone starts at around seven or eight months, so incorporating object permanence toys into playtime for your one-year-old is an exceptional way to build this skill and alleviate your young kid’s separation anxiety.

An object permanence toy hides something from the child and encourages them to find it to play again. For example, a wooden object permanence box has a hole on top for the child to place the ball into. The ball will disappear before it rolls out, teaching a small child patience and object permanence.

Object permanence is a building block for other essential life skills like pretend play, memory development, and reasoning.

Also Read: Montessori Toys For 2 Year Old

Busy Board

A busy board is an entertaining toy that teaches kids various crucial skills, including colors, numbers, problem-solving, and fine motor skills.

As the name implies, a busy board will keep your one-year-old busy with a wide selection of stimuli on one easy-to-use surface. Busy boards typically feature buttons, musical instruments, colors, numbers, switches, sliders, and more. 

Kids develop fine and gross motor skills by reaching or standing to play games on the highest level and by interacting with games that help them practice their motor and cognitive skills. 

A busy board incorporates many of the other Montessori toys for 1-year-olds on this list, but offering a variety of options in one place gives your child the opportunity to choose their preference, encouraging bodily autonomy. 

Activity Cube

An activity cube is one of the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds that helps develop fine and gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination, cognitive skills, and more. 

Activity cubes are blocks with opportunities to play and learn on every side. Some activity cubes feature cut-out shapes where the child must find which shape fits into the correct cut-out. Other types of activity cubes have spinning sides, tracks to pull beads, and various interactive games.

Activity cubes encourage kids to practice their fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and more to complete the various tasks and games.

Coin Box

A coin box is a type of Montessori toy that helps develop object permanence and fine motor skills in young children. 

Like an object permanence box, a coin box is a wooden box with a small slit cut into the top. Your child will place the coin into the slot using their fine motor skills, then use their understanding of object permanence to remember to open the drawer with the coins inside. 

Not only do coin boxes aid with developing object permanence, finger dexterity, and hand-eye coordination, but they also encourage patience as they master the art of pulling open the drawer to retrieve their treasure. 


Learn more about Montessori toys for 1-year-olds with answers to frequently asked questions below. 

How Are Montessori Toys Different From Ordinary Toys?

Montessori toys differ from ordinary toys in a couple of ways. Firstly, they are often made from natural materials like wood, cotton, or metal for a more sensory experience than plastic toys. Secondly, Montessori toys typically focus on one skill to isolate learning.

Is Montessori Good For One-Year-Old?

Yes, Montessori is good for one-year-olds because brain development in early childhood sets the stage for later lessons in life. For example, Montessori toys for 1-year-olds help teach basic skills like gross and fine motor skills, balance, hand-eye coordination, and more. 

Which Is The Best Montessori Toy For A One-Year-Old?

One of the best Montessori toys for 1-year-olds is a wooden puzzle. That said, every child is different, and some Montessori toys may be more enjoyable to some kids. So, it’s best to have a range of toys that provide hands-on learning to round out a child’s early development. 


Montessori toys can help further a child’s learning so they have the skills they’ll need for the rest of their lives.

Now that you know which toys are best for your little one, try incorporating more Montessori toys for 1-year-olds at playtime to help encourage hands-on learning and healthy brain development. 

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