Your best friend's baby is growing so fast. It seems it was just yesterday when your friend found out she was pregnant. Today, her active 12-month-old is moving around like a track star. Gifts for a 12-month-olds should continue to help the baby grow and learn. Consider items to keep him active as well as gifts to develop motor skills.
When a child hits the 12-month mark, he may be just learning how to walk. Get him a push toy to help him master the skill. Choose a heavily weighted push toy like a wagon so he can lean into it as he's making a lap around the kitchen or the living room. Modern day convertible push toys have adjustable handles that are useful as the baby gets taller. For those push toys with the push/pull feature, adjust to the push feature only for beginner walkers. As the child masters the skill, include the pull feature and watch him go.
Chances are, the baby has seen a ball before. The ball becomes more thrilling when she can stand up and bounce the ball on the floor. Large plastic balls are an option for those babies who have mastered the art of standing. If she hasn't mastered standing, have her sit on the floor and push the ball back and forth.
At this age, he probably won't be able to read, however, he will enjoy a good story. He will be intrigued by colorful illustrated or pop-up books. This is a good age to begin teaching about emotions. Purchase books that feature images of real babies giving various expressions, such as happy, sad and excited. He may enjoy books specifically designed for bath-time, such as Elmo's "Let's Get Clean Bath Time Bubble Book." Texture books feature animal illustrations with a cut out hole. Each hole contains a different texture with words such as, "fuzzy" or "bumpy" printed under the illustration.
Babies love noise. Even more, they love being the ones to make the noise. Get her a musical instrument, such as a play drum set or a horn. Musical instruments will help her with her motor skills as she tries to bang the drum with the stick. This will hopefully keep her out of your kitchen cabinets and into her toy chest. Another option is to get a musical toy. Purchase one where the buttons are large enough so she can hone in on her motor skills by turning the toy to different levels or by turning it on and off. She can practice saying her alphabet with a toy that sings the ABCs.
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