The Best Toys for Autistic Toddlers

 

Autistic children are constantly seeking out ways to get the sensory input they need.  With so many toys out there, it’s hard to know what will work.  Even harder is to know what are the best toys for an autistic toddler.

 

There are many toys out there that serve as amazing sensory tools, even if not listed for sensory needs.  I’ve compiled a list of our favorite toys that have been recommended by therapist or we have found works great ourselves.

 

 

 

 

 The Best Toys for Autistic Toddlers

 

9 Toys for Autistic Toddlers

 

 

 

1. Shape Sorting Blockswooden block puzzle

The Shape Sorting Cube helps children with eye-hand coordination, fine motor skills, and visual perception.  You can also use the shapes to learn colors, shapes, and practice following directions.  Place two or three blocks several feet away, then ask the child to bring you a specific one. Wooden Shape Sorting Cube

 

 

 

2. ABC PuzzlesABC Puzzle Toddler

ABC puzzles are great for learning the alphabet and letter identification,  but they off so much more.  They also help with color and shape matching  as well as fine motor skills. ABC Cookie Puzzle

 

 

 

3. Wiggle BallsMini Wiggly Giggly ball for toddlers

Wiggle Balls are a blast.  I like the mini versions for toddlers, but the regular size ones work great too.  Wiggle balls provide both sound and sight to help keep their attention.  Since it moves around, it helps with touch and fine motor skills and coordination. Mini Wiggly Giggly Ball

 

 4. Jumbo Knob PuzzlesJumbo Wooden Knob Puzzles for Toddlers

Jumbo knob puzzles are one of my favorites toys for autistic toddlers.  The large knobs are easier for toddlers to work with which reduces frustration.  They are perfect for working on colors, shapes, identification, and coordination. There are many out there, so you are able to work with shapes, animals identification, and more. Jumbo Knob Puzzle

 

 

 

5. Sensory Chew Toys

Chew toys for toddlers

Sensory chew toys are amazing and rarely expensive.   Most parents see these as solely for little babies who are teething.  A lot of children with autism do have oral sensory needs.  These types of toys are safe for toddlers to chew on and many have extra textures that help as well . Sensory Chew Toys

 

 

 

6. Bubbles

thomas the train bubbling thomas dip and blow bubbles

 

Bubbles with wands and blowers are such an amazing sensory toys for autistic toddlers.  Bubble guns make it easier for parents.  Catching bubbles helps with sensory as well as visual awareness.  Blowing bubbles is a calming activity as it cause slow, deep breaths.   This also helps promote speech.  Bubble Blowers

7. Counting Bear and Cups

 

Rainbow counting bears and cups

 


Our occupational therapist introduced us to this set of toys for autistic toddlers.  Counting Bears and cups are so versatile!  These cannot be left down due to size, but they are perfect for working with your child.  You can have them pick them up with their fingers and ask them to place them in the match cup.  You can also use children’s pretend tweezers for them to pick up the bears and work on fine motor skills.  Rainbow Counting Bears with Matching Sorting Cups

 

 

8. Lacing Beads

Wooden Beads and Lace set - Lacing Beads for toddlers

Lacing beads are perfect for working on fine motor skills.  Have your child place the shape in one hand and the string in the other hand.  By stringing them one-handed, it will work on eye-hand coordination and fine motor skills.Practice with asking them to grab a specific color or even work with making patterns.
Melissa & Doug Primary Lacing Beads with 30 Beads and 2 laces

 

Mini Trampoline MIni trampoline for toddlers autism

Mini trampolines are amazing!  We have a large trampoline in our backyard, so I wasn’t quick to buy one of these as I thought it was pointless.  Then winter came and my son refused to go out in the cold (even though we bundled him).  After a couple of weeks of not being able to get that psychical input from our outdoor trampoline, I gave in and bought one.  It was our best investment to date!  He can go jump whenever he needs to.  Even while doing other therapy, we let him jump for 10-20 times (while counting) to help him get through the task at hand.  Mini Trampoline

 

 

 

Have an older child with sensory needs?  Check out our post on Oral Fixation and Autism

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.
Alicia Trautwein is an autism parenting coach living in Missouri. She is the creator behind The Mom Kind, a website dedicated to parenting neurodiverse families.  She is one of the head creators behind the #WeLoeveMoms campaign and is also featured in the "Amazing Moms" coffee table book by Hogan Hilling & Dr. Elise Ho.  She shares her expertise along with her experience in parenting children, both with and without autism.

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