Mother and Baby

The best toys for a 4-year-old

toys for 4-year-olds

As your baby grows up and they’re not so little any more (*sobs*), their interests and ideas of fun will begin to change. And as they reach the 4-year mark, you’ll not only be asking yourself where all that time went, but what on earth can I buy them for their birthday? 

The best toys for 4-year-olds

With so many brilliant fun and educational toys out there to choose from, we’ve done the hard work for you and rounded up the best toys for 4-year-olds that they will love. 

The best toys for 4-year-olds

Who didn't love a toy till as a child? There's nothing kids love more than pretending to scan items and take payment before giving people change. This is a great toy for encouraging them to develop their number and counting skills ahead of school. 

Does your tot love animals? This mini vet set is brilliant for providing hours of imaginative play, either on their own or with the help of a sibling. Featuring all the tools they'll need to nurse the animals back to health, this set makes a great gift. 

Who knew watching marbles roll down a run could be so fun. Your tot will not only have fun assembling this 200 piece (yes 200!) marble run, but kids can play for hours, watching the marbles roll through! 

Long gone are the days of a basic, light-up globe to learn about the world. When used alongside the app, this fun and interactive globe takes tots on a journey around the world, with over 400 highlights and more than 1000 cool facts across 6 categories - cultures, cuisines, monuments, inventions, animals and maps - so they'll be a mini geography whizz in no time. 

A classic board game for kids that never gets old, Crocodile Dentist is a fun game for the whole family that'll challenge your little one to cure the crocs' toothache before he chops down on their hand. It's super easy to set up, will develop their fine motor skills and best of all, requires no batteries! 

Help your little one explore their creative side with this huge set from Crayola. This set includes, a gigantic colouring book, 24 assorted crayons, 10 Twistables coloured pencils, 12 coloured chalk, 12 Supertips, 12 Twistables crayons, 6 flip top markers, 18 washable kids paint and 3 Twistables graphite pencils. 

Super stuck on what to buy them? LEGO is always a winner and this play set will provide hours of fun, containing 790 colourful pieces, including eight different types of windows and doors with eight different frames so they can construct their own buildings and more. 

Does your little one fancy themselves as a budding photographer? This is the ideal first camera to help them learn more about taking the perfect photo with both front and rear facing cameras, movie recording feature and fun editing tools to get their creative juices flowing. 

If you've seen the movie, Big, you'll know exactly how much fun one of these can be. With 8 musical instrument sounds to choose from, including Piano, Saxophone, Violin, Clarinet, Trumpet, Banjo, Xylophone, Guitar, this keyboard allows you to record and playback the tunes you compose.  

Ideal for messier play, this clay kit comes with 24 different colours of clay to model into any shape you like. It also comes with tools and accessories to decorate your creations as well as containers to store clay so that it doesn't dry up when they get bored. 

Fuel your little scientists love for nature with this fun and educational microscope. With 20 pre-prepared slides featuring 60 images, it'll help kids learn all about different species while taking a look at them close up. 

Another toy that will develop your child's imagination and pretend play skills, this 20 piece Ice Cream Cart will help them learn more about colours and numbers while improving their memory skills with all the ice cream orders they'll be getting! 

What to look out for when buying a toy for a 4-year-old

Age range - Always check the age range of the toy before you buy. Not only is this important for kid safety, but 4 is a very tricky age as they aren’t a toddler any more but they aren’t old enough for a lot of child toys, so you want to be sure you’re buying something appropriate that they’ll love. 

Education value - They’ll soon be old enough for school, so any toys that can develop their knowledge of words, numbers, geography and other school subjects will start to get them excited for learning, and they’ll be a hit with parents too. Read these 11 teachers tips for parents with kids starting school.

Current trends - Do they have a favourite film that has just come out? Or have you noticed them wearing a character on their t-shirt recently? Current trends will always be a hit with toys, whether it’s a castle inspired by Frozen or a doll from their favourite TV show. 

Multiple player toys - It’s not just their knowledge of numbers and words you can improve through a toy, but their all important social skills too. That’s why a toy that can be played with other children is such a good choice as it will help develop their communication skills. 

Creative toys - Their creative side is just as important as their academic side at school, so arts and crafts toys are great for developing their creative skills and imagination. Read more about toddler development and milestones here. 


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  • Author: Lorna White Lorna White
  • Job Title: Digital Writer

Lorna is the digital executive and regular contributor for Mother&Baby. After running the Yours magazine website which specialises in content about caring for kids and grandchildren, she has now brought her expertise to the UK's #1 leading pregnancy and parenting magazine. Lorna specialises on a range of topics from potty training and nutrition, to everything and anything that will keep your tot occupied!

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