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Our mission at Inquisitive Infant is to offer parents, childcare givers, and teachers a variety of toys that will stimulate your children to learn and flourish from infancy through toddlers and into preschool. We strive to find early childhood toys that follow the Growth and Learning Stages below that are designed to help your child with early visual and cognitive development such as hand-eye coordination, memory skills, and fine motor skills through multi-sensory experiences.
Growth and Learning Stages
Starting at birth, your baby is learning all about his new environment. He will grow and develop at an amazing rate, exploring with all his senses. Like most babies, he will go through many stages of growth and learning during the first three years. We have included some information on each of these stages that may help with your toy selections.
0 - 3 months: Your baby is learning about the world he lives in through sights, sounds and touch. He may follow moving objects with his eyes, recognize familiar objects and sounds, bring hands to mouth, grip objects or reach for dangling objects.
He may enjoy toys with sounds, music, and contrasting colors, that he can grab and shake.
3 - 6 months: Your baby is learning to use his hands and starting to use hand-eye coordination. He may be able to sit up with support, reach for objects with one hand, transfer objects from one hand to another, and continue to explore his world using hands and mouth.
Try toys with patterns, shapes, textures, and sound.
6 - 9 months: Your baby is becoming more mobile and finding his voice. He may be able to sit up, or start crawling, or he may start pulling himself up to a standing position. He continues to explore through touch, and may be able to clap or start to babble. Toys he can push, pull, and shake are fun at this age.
9 - 12 months: Your baby is becoming more independent. He will probably be able to crawl, or pull himself up and walk holding onto furniture. He may even be able to walk unassisted, begin feeding himself, or say a few words.
He will enjoy toys that are multifunctional like shape sorters, blocks, toy telephones, or sit to stand walkers.
12 - 24 months: In your child's second year, consider toys that encourage imagination and play; toys that he can open and close, stack, take apart, shake, bang, or throw. Blocks, drums and other musical instruments, balls, and small ride on toys may spark his interest.
24 - 36 months: In your child's third year, look for toys that stimulate higher learning, promote problem solving, help develop social skills, and expand his language like books, puzzles, and games.
36 months+: In the years following age 3 to starting school, your child will continue to engage in imaginative play, develop social skills, and add to his vocabulary.