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The Best Baby Learning and Development Toys in 2022

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Babies learn from all the different stimuli around them and a balance needs to be found between providing the right level of stimulation and not overdoing it.

Newborn baby? Your little one is learning all the time at this age and in their first year of life will go through some huge developmental milestones. The main way infants learn is through play and specifically activities with you and other family members. They are literally like a sponge at this age, ready to learn and their brains will develop through active use. It’s never too early to start introducing baby learning toys to stimulate their imaginations and help boost their development. Keep reading to understand why it’s important to introduce playtime from a young age, plus, our favourite baby development toys at the memo.

Toys and child development

Did you know that in the first year of your child’s life the size of their brain doubles, and by the age of three it is 80% of the size of an adult’s? During this important first year of life, it’s especially important to stimulate your child with a range of varied activities to help kickstart their development. Babies learn from all the different stimuli around them and a balance needs to be found between providing the right level of stimulation and not overdoing it. In fact, play is their main way of learning because it gives them opportunities to explore, observe, experiment and problem solve. Introducing some learning toys into their playtime can give their development a real edge.

What are baby girl and baby boy learning toys?

Baby learning toys are simply objects that help to assist with your child’s development, also known as hitting key milestones. When it comes to infant learning toys specifically, this could include things like:

  • Rattles
  • Mobiles
  • Activity gyms
  • Picture books

Why use child development toys?

There are many benefits to introducing some kids learning toys into your nursery and your child’s daily routine. This includes helping children to:

  • Communicate
  • Remember
  • Understand and imagine
  • feel loved, happy and safe
  • develop social skills
  • learn about caring for others and the environment
  • develop physical skills
  • visual learning
  • spatial awareness

Learning toys for toddlers

If you’re specifically searching for learning toys for 1-2 year olds, we have some great blog content to help guide your purchases. Take a read of our blog article on the best toddler gifts and multipurpose toys to inspire creative play now.

Best Developmental Toys for Newborn Babies

Newborn babies in particular can benefit from learning and developmental toys. Here’s a roundup of the 8 best baby toys for brain development that you can find right now at the memo.

1. Done by Deer Activity Play Mat

done by deer mat

    The perfect place to stimulate growing minds and work in some tummy time simultaneously- an activity mat! Your baby can lay on the quilted play mat and engage with five toys (which have sound and mirror included) hung from two cross bars. You can easily move the toys to thirteen other positions or remove and place them on the mat for your baby to play with during tummy time. You can see all our baby play mats.

    Features of Activity Play Mat:

    • Five toys with sound and mirror included
    • Two cross bars to hang toys from
    • Includes mat
    • Suitable for newborns until one year old

    2. Baby Bjorn Bouncer Bliss

    baby bjorn bouncer

      One of the best ways you can start developing your child’s motor skills is by introducing a bouncer from an early age. The Baby Bjorn Bouncer Bliss is the best in the biz as it combines style with functionality perfectly. Infants can play, kick their legs and wave their arms, which will gently rock the bouncer. The seat distributes your baby’s weight evenly, which is particularly important for newborn babies.

      Features of Bouncer Bliss:

      • Suitable for newborns until two years old
      • Three positions for play, rest and sleep
      • Machine washable
      • Manual bouncer- moves with baby’s weight

      3. Elephant Party Mobile

      elephant mobile

        An absolute must-have learning toy for newborns is a mobile! Infants take so much in from the moment they arrive, so investing in a colourful mobile to prop in their room is a great way to stimulate them and encourage them to focus. We love this one of the colourful elephants from Flensted for any nursery room!

        Features of Elephant Mobile:

        • Three elephants mobile
        • Made of cardboard with a wood base, suspend by wire and thread.

        4. Baby Rattle Rabbit

          baby rattle

          It might sound simple, but giving a newborn a baby rattle is an excellent (and easy!) way to help stimulate their development. This cute rattle from Oyoy will help entertain your baby and develop their senses. Designed with fun characters, the plain knit cotton is soft to touch, with polyester padding and a rattle inside.

          Features of Rattle Rabbit:

          • Ideal for newborns
          • Made from knit cotton

          5. Card Deck: The First Year

          happy little people

            Baby bonding doesn’t come naturally to everyone and these cards can massively help you with this. This deck is filled with 52 development-promoting and bonding activities to enhance your baby's awake time. Tailored around key developmental milestones for babies in their first year of life, some of the key benefits include bonding and trust, motor skills, body awareness, auditory and language skills, sensory play and awareness as well as exploration.

            Features of the Cards:

            • Ideal for newborns until one years old
            • A different activity for each week of the baby's first year of life
            • 52 card games.activities included

            6. Skwish Classic


              Skwish is unlike any baby toy you’ve ever seen and an award-winning icon for a reason. It’s a wooden rattle, teether toy and baby stimulator all-in-one. A shape shifter, it’s made from renewable rubberwood and strung together with durable elastic cords, and can be squished then returned to its original shape, with beads that slide and rattle. The unique design offers tactile, sensory play essential for baby development. Better yet, the Skwish easy to grasp design encourages fine and gross motor skill development while providing cognitive and visual stimulation.

              Features of Skwish:

              • Suitable for newborns onwards
              • Teething toy
              • Wooden rattle
              • Shape shifter
              • Made from renewable rubberwood and elastic cords

              7. Waterfall Arch Stacker

              raduga waterfall stacker

                If you wish to truly stimulate your baby’s imagination, then a toy from Raduga Grez is the answer. This one is particularly well suited as baby learning toys for 6- 9 months old and beyond. Utterly dreamy, this toy simulates the movement of a waterfall, its softness and strength, its smooth lines and calm and confident power. It is designed so all elements are comfortable to hold even for a baby. Their “velvety” texture makes it easier to build with, ensuring they never slide and give endless building variations. We adore that each toy from this brand comes with creative suggestions for how to play with them too!

                Features of Waterfall Stacker:

                • From six months old
                • 7 individual pieces
                • Comes with creative suggestions for playtime
                • Non-toxic water based paint
                • Hand-made

                8. Squeaker

                mr lion squeaker

                  Perfect for newborns as well as older babies, the Squeaker toy from Trixie is utter fun. Choose from different animal characters including Mr Lion, Fox, Polar Bear, Elephant and Rabbit. Even the tiniest hands are able to hold onto the Squeaker and can use it for self-soothing as well as entertainment. It will help to trigger their imaginations as well as their motor skills as the toy lets out a short, loud ‘squeak’ when squeezing it.

                  Features of Squeaker Toy:

                  • Made from soft cotton
                  • 5 animal characters to choose from
                  • Makes a loud squeak when pressed

                  Inspired to include some emotional development toys and other learning toys into your baby’s daily routine? You can never start too early, and don’t underestimate the importance of spending time with your little one. Find more toys including toys for 1 year old and learning toys for 8 month old baby now.

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