Christmas toys for four year-olds

October 13, 2016 Published by

Four year-olds love to be active so outdoor toys are ideal for encouraging children to be fit and healthy. They will enjoy playing make believe games with friends too; play sets that can be shared and outfits for dressing up are great for this and also promote sharing and other key social skills.

 This Christmas, we want good quality toys children will enjoy again and again. So rather than spending a small fortune on a toy that  is destined to gather dust, why not get some inspiration from our Good Toy Guide experts? These little elves spend all year trying out tons of toys - with the help of children, parents, and child carers - to add some sparkle to your gift list this Christmas.

Irish Fairy Door by Ackerman

(RRP: £19.99)

  • Opens children up to the fantastical world of fairies, inspiring their imaginations
  • Children can write messages to their fairies which helps them get their problems out in the open.
  • Their fairy can write back and give them some words of wisdom An accessible product for different ages and abilities

The Irish Fairy Door Company help fairies relocate to homes and gardens all over the world - all you need is your own door. Once installed, children need to leave the key outside the door; if the key has gone in the morning, a fairy has moved in. Children can then use the glass bottle included to leave messages for their fairy. We think this is a wonderfully imaginative way to encourage make believe, and a beautiful way to give children their own fairy to write to about their problems.

Three Little Piggies by Smart Games

(RRP: £24.99)

  • Multi-level puzzles means that children can build their confidence and continue to be challenged
  • The fairy tale theme makes this an appealing brainteaser for children
  • Encourages children to think logically and solve problems

A logic puzzle game that really got our testers thinking . In this sweet fairy tale themed puzzle from Smart Games, children must move the pieces to match the picture in the booklet. There are 48 multi-level challenges to complete, and it's harder than it looks.

Sands Alive Castle Set by John Adams

(RRP: £29.99)

  • A sensory material that can be squidged and squashed, strengthening the small hand and finger muscles (which are important for things like holding a pencil to write)
  • Experimenting with sand helps pre-schoolers learn about capacity and measuring, and nurtures their curiosity as they explore the 'what happens if' questions (e.g. pouring or squashing sand)
  • Can be used for construction, developing creativity and problem solving skills

Sands Alive brings all the fun of a sandy beach indoors, without the mess. The Castle Set comes with everything needed to build the ultimate sandcastle. Children can squish, shape and mould this super soft modelling sand again and again to make all sorts of creations.

Giant Piano Mat by Rainbow Colours 

(RRP: £29.99)

  • Jumping around rather than sitting still to play proved a very appealing way for active pre-schoolers to start playing tunes
  • Offers a simple introduction to reading musical notes, with accessible colour-coding to build children's confidence
  • A fun way to inspire musical creativity

If you've ever wanted to reenact that scene from the film Big, now's your chance! This giant piano mat from Rainbow Colours has twenty-four touch sensitive keys, five instrument sounds, and a recording option so children can play back their masterpiece. Our testers loved running and dancing around on the keys; the simple colour coded music cards make it easy to start playing recognisable tunes and this is a wonderful introduction to playing music.

Ur-Tubes by Connect 2 Play

(RRP: £44.99)

  • A very versatile construction toy that can be used to build imaginary worlds - anything from a den to a pirate ship
  • Imaginative play is great for getting children to play together, developing friendships
  • Construction is ideal for creativity, problem solving, and thinking outside of the box

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a pirate ship - wait, what? The very versatile Ur-Tubes are "like really big straws" (according to our testers), which can be used to create almost anything. These creations can then be used in their imaginative play, whether that's a den for their secret club or a train to run around the garden in.

 

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This post was written by Anna Taylor

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