Activity cubes come in all shapes (well mostly cube-shaped, but triangles, tables and just big boards can be found as well) and sizes. The idea is that they offer lots of different activities for your little one to enjoy in one compact toy, and generally, they don’t have too many loose pieces to get lost of swallowed, which may be why they are so popular in the waiting rooms of doctors and dentists.
Another reason you might see them in waiting rooms and community spaces up and down the country is that they offer so many developmental opportunities for your little one. From the moment they are born children are constantly learning, and from about the age of six months toys become an important part of that process.
They learn that they can grab at things and move them. They learn about cause and effect for example when they shake a rattle it makes a sound or when they drop their cup on the floor mummy makes a sound. They learn about problem-solving, hand-eye coordination, object permanence, they recognise shapes and learn colours and counting.
A good activity cube can help with all these skills and more. You just need to make sure you pick one that has enough complexity to keep your little one entertained without being too complex so that they get frustrated and lose interest before they master the skills.
Activity Cubes for Babies
Many activity cubes are aimed at children of 12 months and above but there are some that can be great for even smaller babies. Once your little one can sit unaided they also usually have an interest in grabbing and playing with toys and have some level of coordination. They can get food into their mouths and they can start to figure out some of the more basic elements of an activity cube.
Soft cubes are great at this age as well as they are light, easy to hold, and yet still offer lots of different sensory activities and experiences.
Activity cubes for toddlers
From about 18 months little ones are really beginning to develop their hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills, making this a great age for activity cubes and busy boards.
You know your child best so try and choose something that suits their level of development. For example, if they can already count to 5 choose one with higher numbers, and if they are starting to recognise letters pick one that has the alphabet.
Lock boxes are also lots of fun and great for really getting those fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination and dexterity working.