Monday, August 1, 2016

Montessori Friendly Push and Pull Toys

It seems like small children are always looking for a way to push something, load something, unload something or drag it along. Most of the time kids don't need special toys to fulfill these needs. They will find a basket to push, or a bucket to fill. They can frequently be seen trying to meet maximum effort by pushing chairs across the floor. 

While it's definitely an extra, I've always enjoyed having some push/pull toys around for my children so that my furniture stays put {well, mostly} and my floors are relatively unharmed by dragging non-wheeled objects around. 

Depending on their age, here are some of my favorites! 

Crawling/Pulling Up to Walking

Walker Wagon -- For the youngest babies and toddlers, hands down my favorite push/pull toy is the Radio Flyer Walker Wagon. It's sturdy, the sides come down, and it doesn't roll away as kids are pulling up. Plus, its got plenty of space to haul all sorts of things! The walker wagon is also one of those toys that is so long lasting that we have used it happily for years. 

Walker to 18 months 


Upright Walkers -- I know many people love these even for non-walking babies to pull-up on and push around. Personally, they just seem too tippy for me before walking. But, that's a judgment call every family has to make. There are so many great ones out there on the market! 



Personally, I look for one that is stable, pretty, simple and not too large! Some of my favorites: 

Toddler Wobbler by Brio; Walker Wagon by Haba; Natural Walker by Moover Baby; Block and Roll Cart by Hape; Toddler Wagon by IKEA

Push Toys -- These are always a classic! And, while kids can't haul stuff with these, young toddlers still seem to find hours of enjoyment. These include Plan Toys Walk and Roll; Hape Lawn Mower; Hape Rainbow Push Toy; Melissa and Doug Flapping Duck.

18 months to 3-years old 

Baby Stroller -- By 18-months, my kids have both loved to start pushing a doll around in a stroller. This has been a favorite in our home for a long, long time. We have this simple doll stroller and love it. This wooden pram from Haba also looks wonderful, if you wanted something sturdier. 

Doll Wagon -- We also have a tiny wagon for younger toddlers. This is one of those impulse purchases that I made at a consignment sale and have actually really liked. Its by no means necessary because its so so small, but Nora loves hauling things in it. 


Vacuum -- Another absolute favorite at our house! We just remove the center bar to make it child size! Then its useful and satisfying. Same goes for the swiffer

3-years-old plus 

Larger Wagon -- We love our large wagon, we have a plastic version, but I would love a sturdy metal version like this. The kids haul each other around and do all sorts of great gross motor and maximum effort activities with it!  

Wheel Barrow -- This is on my wish list! It adds a new dimension to push/pull and I think Henry would really enjoy it. Plus its just plain useful when working in the yard! 

Do you have any favorite push/pull toys that you would add to this list?

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