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26 min read

Our complete 2022 gift list is now available!

As a group of mothers and educators, we carefully selected these items based on:
  • Developmental benefits
  • Long-term use
  • Popularity and positive feedback (from our own home and our customers)

Check out our list of our top picks for ages 0-6 at every price point - Under $30, $30-$50, $50-$100, $100-$200, and $200+.

You can click the link below to jump to the age you're interested in:

Infant
1 Year Olds
2 Year Olds
3 Year Olds
4 Year Olds
5 Year Olds
6 Year Olds

Infant

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick: Skwish  ($24.99)

Skwish - The Montessori Room, Manhattan Toy, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, bestselling toy, infant toy, award winning toy, wooden toy, baby toy, baby registry gift ideas, baby's first toy, most popular infant toys

Why did we choose this?

This award-winning rattle and teether toy provides an infant with a rich sensorial experience as they explore the springy elastic and rubberwood rods.  The unique shape of the Skwish is intriguing to an infant and holds their attention as they learn to rattle, pull and squish.   It is a great “on the go” activity and can be easily taken with you on outings, traveling, etc.  Made with non-toxic, water-based finishes this toy can be safely explored with all of the senses.

What are the benefits of Skwish?

  • It provides infants with an auditory, tactile and visually stimulating sensory experience. 
  • Develops focus and concentration.
  • Helps to strengthen the muscles in the hands and develop fine motor skills related to grasping and reaching, pushing and pulling. 
  • Develops hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness.
  • As the infant grows and begins to move independently, it helps to develop gross motor skills. Baby learns to move themselves to retrieve the ball.  

Budget: $30 - $50 

Our Pick: Sensory Magic Tissue Box ($34.99)

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Why did we choose this?

The Sensory Magic Tissue Box is a fun and engaging sensory toy for an infant.  Young children learn about the world through their senses and this tissue box introduces them to a variety of colours and textures.  We love that this sensory tissue box will grow with your child.  Introduce at 5 months+ and use well into the toddler years.  In infancy, it will be used to explore and develop fine motor skills.  As the child grows they’ll learn to name the colours, sort them and use them in their imaginative and gross motor play.  

What are the benefits of the Sensory Pull Along Tissue Box?

  • Helps to develop fine motor skills as the child pulls the tissues from the box
  • Helps to develop hand-eye coordination as the child returns the tissues to the box.  In infancy, this step will be done by the adult but as they grow they will begin to do it themselves.
  • A hands-on activity that introduces colours and textures.
  • Engages the visual, auditory and tactile senses.
  • Develops language skills and enriches vocabulary - naming colours, describing textures, etc.

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick: Wimmer-Ferguson Crawl and Discover Mat ($64.99)

Wimmer-Ferguson Crawl & Discover Mat - The Montessori Room, Manhattan Toy, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, baby mat, black and white toys, educational toys, visual development, baby registry gift ideas, crawl mat, sensory mat

Why did we choose this?

This Crawl and Discover Mat has a variety of features that stimulate an infant’s senses.  Safety-rated for 3 months + this mat is a great addition to tummy time.  Research shows that newborns and young infants are drawn to high-contrast colours and patterns.  This mat is covered in interesting images and includes flaps, different textures, a mirror, a pocket and teethers! 

What are the benefits of the Wimmer-Ferguson Crawl and Discover Mat?

  • Safe to be explored with all of the senses, which is how infants learn about the world them.  
  • Introduces and develops pattern recognition through high contrast images.  Pattern recognition is a foundational math skill.  
  • Helps to develop and strengthen gross motor skills.  When used during tummy time, strengthens the neck and shoulders.  As the infant becomes more mobile, they’ll begin to move and crawl around the comfortable mat.   
  • Encourages self-discovery as the infant explores their reflection in the mirror 
  • Helps to develop fine motor skills as the infant gradually learns to lift the flaps and use the pocket.  

Budget: $100 - $200

Our Pick:Natural Play Gym with Toys ($149.99)

Natural Play Gym with Toys - The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, wooden play gym, baby gym, infant gym, Montessori baby materials, baby registry gift ideas

Why did we choose this?

This Play Gym offers just the right amount of stimulation for a growing infant.  It comes with 3 hanging toys that are easily adjustable in height and width so that the infant can reach for and interact with them.  The beautiful wooden toys are also detachable so you can use them separately from the play gym - they make great “on the go” activities.  The frame and toys are made of Beech wood and the hand-painted toys are painted with saliva-proof non-toxic paints, which means they’re safe to be explored with all of the senses.    

What are the benefits of the Natural Play Gym with Toys?

  • Helps to develop gross motor skills by encouraging movement.  The infant will interact with, reach for and kick the hanging toys.  
  • Helps to develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination as the infant grasps and explores the toys with their hands.  
  • Helps to develop visual tracking skills.  The bright colours of the toys stimulate the visual sense as the infant observes their movement from below.  
  • Stimulates the senses without overwhelming them.  The toys will make noises via a small bell and wooden pieces knocking together as the infant interacts with them.  This is an early introduction to cause and effect.  

Budget: $200+

Our Pick: Infant Montessori Box (6-12 months) ($269.99)

Infant Montessori Box [6-12 Months]

Why did we choose this?

We have made gift-giving so simple with this Infant Montessori Box.  This box includes 9 beautiful and high-quality materials designed to meet the developmental needs of an infant aged 6 to 12 months.  Many of these materials will continue to be used in the toddler years as they are meant to be repeated and explored for as long as the child shows an interest.  These 9 materials are designed to meet an infant’s need for repetition, order, fine motor and gross motor activity.  Strengthening the hands and body helps to prepare them for more complex tasks later on.  

What are the benefits of the Infant Montessori Box (6-12 months)?

  • The items in this box were carefully selected by an Infant Toddler Montessori (MACTE) teacher and Registered Early Childhood Educator.
  • Each piece is designed to support a child's development from 6 - 12 + months and includes instructions on why and how to introduce them to your child.
  • The box includes the following items:
    • Wooden Maraca Rattle develops and strengthens the hand(s) while exploring cause and effect and music.  The two-sided spherical shape invites the child to hold it with one or both hands.  
    • TheCube in a Box invites sensorial exploration of a geometric solid, developing what Dr. Montessori referred to as the child's 'mathematical mind.’
    • TheFine Motor Setpromotes hand-eye coordination and strengthens the hand and wrist as infants learn to remove the items and place them into the corresponding cup. This set helps develop fine motor skills and encourages the use of two hands working together.
    • ThePlan Toys Wooden Roller stimulates the senses while being light enough to be pushed or grasped by the infant.  This roller encourages movement and develops gross motor skills as the infant reaches for and moves after it.  
    • TheSpinning Drum is an aid in the development of sitting up with (and eventually without) support but can also be used during tummy time.  The infant spins the drum and explores the sound of the bell inside, the brightly coloured panels and a mirror to explore their own reflection.   
    • TheRubber Sensory Ball is designed for safe, independent sensorial exploration of the various textures and colours.  The ball encourages movement and the development of spatial relations.  
    • The Stacking Rings are introduced to develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination as infants gradually learn to remove and replace the rings onto the dowel.  As they get older, the concept of sequence and size can be introduced.
    • TheBox with Knitted Ball is a great material for learning about object permanence, while also developing problem-solving skills, strengthening the hand and developing hand-eye coordination.  It also introduces the practical skill of opening and closing a drawer.  
    • A Cotton Rope Basket is used to create order in the environment.  You can use it to contain some of the materials included in this box or in other areas of the home.  

Honourable Mention:

One Year Olds

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick:  Fruit Knobbed Puzzle ($13.99)

Why did we choose this?

This colourful puzzle includes 8 pieces, each with a small wooden knob perfect for little hands. This beautiful wooden puzzle develops a variety of important skills, including fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, problem-solving skills and language development.  We love puzzles because you can usually find one that will be of interest to your child.  Choosing a familiar theme, like fruits, can help to pique their interest and hold their attention.  This is a great puzzle for the development of independent play.  Safety rated for 18 months +

What are the benefits of the Fruit Knobbed Puzzle?

  • Helps to develop and strengthen fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
  • Helps to develop language skills, including spatial vocabulary, i.e. above, below, turn, flip, etc.  Puzzles can be used independently but they also make great conversation starters further enriching vocabulary and developing social skills. 
  • Helps to develop spatial awareness. 
  • Helps to develop logical thinking and problem-solving skills.
  • Helps to develop concentration, focus and independence.  Puzzles are self-correcting so they are excellent for independent play. The puzzle itself tells the child if they’ve done it correctly or not, eliminating the need for an adult to "correct" them.

Budget: $30 - $50

Our Pick: Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Builders ($44.99)

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Why did we choose this?

These Magnetic Foam Builders have been flying off the shelf since we got them in.  Designed by teachers, these lightweight foam blocks are an early introduction to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) learning.  Each set includes 10 magnetic blocks and a small story about the Blockaroo kit.  We love that you can take them in the bath - they float! - and that they’re dishwasher friendly.  Recommended for children 18 months +.        

What are the benefits of the Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Builders?

  • Helps to develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.  These jumbo blocks are light and easy for small hands to use.  
  • They develop the senses and are safe to be explored.  The magnetic system is ultra secure and water friendly.  The patented design ensures they always attract so they’ll last forever.     
  • Helps to develop spatial reasoning and problem-solving skills.  
  • These foam blocks are the best bath time toy.

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick:  Plan Toys Hammer Ball ($67.99)

Why did we choose this?

We have this toy on display in our storefront and many of the children (and parents!) who come into the shop are drawn to it.  What’s great about this toy is that it can grow with your child, initially using their hand(s) to push the balls through the holes and then later introducing them to the hammer.  The Hammer Ball develops a variety of skills, including fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination and gross motor skills.  This toy is a lot of fun and high quality so it’ll withstand a child’s exploration.  Recommended for children 12 months +.    

What are the benefits of the Plan Toys Hammer Ball?

  • Helps to develop and strengthen fine motor skills.  There is a rubber seal around each hole that adds a challenge to pushing the balls through the holes.  
  • Helps to develop gross motor skills.  The balls will roll out of the bench once pushed through, inviting the child to move to retrieve them.  
  • Helps children to explore cause and effect.
  • Wooden hammer is designed for small hands.  Children learn how to use a tool in a safe and fun way.  

Budget: $100 - $200

Our Pick:  Sunshine Baby Activity Walker ($179.99)

Why did we choose this?

This beautiful Sunshine Baby Activity Walker is inspired by the weather!  This is a great walker for little ones learning to walk.  When they’re not using it to walk around and explore, there are a variety of fun features built-in to develop their fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination and more.  There’s even a small storage compartment in the back for toys.  Recommended for children 18 months +.   

What are the benefits of the Sunshine Baby Activity Walker?

  • Encourages a child to move and strengthen their gross motor skills 
  • Helps to develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination 
  • This walker includes the following features:
    • A sun that flips to a mirror
    • A windmill that turns
    • A rainbow wire toy with beads
    • A clacking crescent moon on a cloud
    • A small snow sound maker
    • A flipping polar bear face and snowflake
    • A window that opens to a snow bunny
    • A cut out stem to run some disks along
    • Rotating cubes illustrated on all four sides
    • A small window with rotating button to reveal different illustrations
    • 4 shape sorters
    • 3 rotating cogs 

Budget: $200+

Our Pick:  Medium Climbing Triangle (starting at $329.99)

Montessori Climbing Triangle Ramp - The Montessori Room

Why did we choose this?

This is the #1 best-selling product on our website and for good reason. It is the best toy for gross motor development.  Our Climbing Triangles are made in Canada with solid hard maple rungs that can hold up to 200 lbs.  They are an excellent tool to satisfy a child’s need for movement (indoors!) and to develop confidence in engaging in physical activity.  Add one of our ramps to further their exploration and development of gross motor skills  

What are the benefits of the Medium Climbing Triangle?

  • Helps to develop and strengthen gross motor skills.  
  • Helps to develop balance and coordination 
  • It helps children understand their own physical boundaries so that they can better judge other physical obstacles independently.  Helps to develop problem-solving skills and builds confidence.  
  • Develops the connection between the brain and the body
  • It helps children expend energy when they are indoors
  • Increases spatial awareness and promotes proprioception, which is the awareness of the body’s position and movement
  • As the child grows the triangle will be used for imaginative, open-ended play

Honourable Mention:

Two Year Olds

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick:  Acorn Soup ($29.99)

Acorn Soup - The Montessori Room

Why did we choose this?

This is one of our most popular board games because it’s the perfect “first” game for a young child.  In this game, toddlers make an acorn soup by following the recipe cards and adding the ingredients to the pot.  We love that the recipe cards are visual so there is no reading required.  Being able to fully participate in a game helps to develop a toddler's confidence.  The players count, identify and match ingredients according to the recipe cards.  Board games are such a fun way to help develop a child’s social skills.  Recommended for children 2 years +. 

 What are the benefits of Acorn Soup?

  • Playing games with others helps to develop language skills and enriches vocabulary.
  • Help to develop a child’s social skills and build connections with others.  Board games teach children how to take turns, follow instructions and cooperate.  
  • Adding ingredients and making the soup develops and strengthens fine motor skills.

Budget: $30 - $50

 Our Pick:  Learn to Dress Doll ($46.99)

 

Why did we choose this?

 Manhattan Toy’s Learn to Dress Doll has been a popular new arrival in our shop.  This is an excellent gift for toddlers starting to show an interest in dressing themselves or for those looking for a sweet companion.  This doll is so soft and makes a great travel buddy.  We love the variety of fasteners included on her clothing to be explored and practiced.  Recommended for children 18 months +.

What are the benefits of Learn to Dress Doll?

  • Helps to develop and strengthen fine motor skills.
  • Helps to develop confidence and independence.  
  • The clothing fasteners included on the doll are:
    • Velcro
    • A zipper
    • A button
    • D-ring belt buckle
    • A snap
    • A shoe lace
  • Playing with dolls develops empathy, language skills and social skills.

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick:  Square Gel Floor Tile ($60.99)

 

Why did we choose this?

 A Square Gel Floor Tile is a fun and engaging toy that will be used for years.  They are durable and made of a special polymer material.  When a child (or adult!)  jumps, stomps, dances or pushes their hands on the tiles, the gel inside reacts and creates a display of bubbles, streams and pools.  They are mesmerizing!  These tiles are quite large (19.5 “ by 19.5 “) but they store really easily.  They also come in a variety of colours to choose from.   

What are the benefits of the Square Gel Floor Tile?

  • Help to develop gross motor skills and encourage movement.  
  • Help to stimulate sensory and perceptual development.
  • Invite exploration of cause and effect as the child moves in different ways to make the gel move.
  • Wonderfully calming and a great way to burn excess energy - especially in the winter! 

Budget: $100 - $200

 Our Pick:  Kinderfeets Balance Board (Rainbow) ($144.99)

 Kinderfeets Balance Board (Natural & Rainbow)

Why did we choose this?

This is one of our best-selling Large Active Toys.  The rainbow colour is so bright and inviting!  We recommend this size, rather than the Junior, because it will grow with your child.  It can be used as a balance board for years and is safe for both children and adults to use.  The weight limit is 485 lbs.  A balance board is a great tool to help develop coordination, balance, and confidence. It can also be used as an open-ended toy and develop the imagination; use the board as a car ramp, doll cradle, slide, bridge or mini fort!    

What are the benefits of the Kinderfeets Balance Board (Rainbow)?

  • Helps to develop and strengthen gross motor skills
  • Increases spatial awareness
  • Teaches balance and coordination and provides the child with an opportunity to practice in the comfort of their own home.  Balancing toys at playgrounds can often be too high or busy.   
  • Promotes proprioception
  • Encourages open-ended play

Budget: $200+

Our Pick:  Learning Tower ($369.99 and includes FREE Toddler Knife)

Why did we choose this?

The Learning Tower is not to be overlooked as the perfect gift for a 2 year old.  Families who have bought one say it quickly becomes the most used item in the home.  Our Canadian-made Learning Tower brings a child up to the height of the counter so they are able to observe and participate in household tasks alongside their parents.  The three height adjustments allow you to use this Learning Tower for years to come.  And it doesn’t take up much space with a footprint of 16” x 18.5”.  This is a must-have for any family who likes to cook and clean together. 

What are the benefits of the Learning Tower? 

  • Allows young children to participate in kitchen activities much earlier than they'd otherwise be able to.
  • It is extremely durable and can hold up to 250lbs.  
  • Sealed with a 100% food grade oil that makes it non-toxic and easy to clean
  • Getting children involved in food preparation builds confidence and independence.  When involved in the preparation of food, children may be more willing to eat it.  
  • Brings children up to the counter so they can wash their hands, help with baking, wash dishes, etc.  
  • The Learning Tower sets a young child up for success when participating in household tasks. 

Honourable Mention:

Three Year Olds

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick:  Chunkies Paint Sticks (12) ($24.99)

 

Why did we choose this?

Chunkies Paint Sticks are an absolute favourite art supply in our homes and they’ve been very popular at the shop too.  This set includes 12 different colours for a young artist to explore.  They are perfect for small hands and are mess-free.  They don’t require any water and don’t smudge.  And they dry quickly!  They are easy to clean and really fun on windows.  We can’t say enough great things about them!  Recommended for children 3 years +.

 What are the benefits of Chunkies Paint Sticks?

  • Help to develop creativity and personal expression 
  • Stimulates the visual sense 
  • Helps to develop and refine fine motor skills
  • Exploration of colours and colour mixing. 
  • High quality art material, designed to withstand a young child’s exploration 

Budget: $30 - $50

Our Pick:  Sensory Bin Kits ($32.99)

 Sensory Bin Kits - The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Creativity for Kids, Faber-Castell, Ocean and Sand Sensory Bin, Construction Zone Sensory Bin, Garden Critter Sensory Bin, Ice Cream Shop Sensory Bin, sensory toys, sensory development, fine motor skills, imaginative play toys, open ended toys

Why did we choose this?

We love sensory play but don’t always have the time to create sensory bins.  These kits come with EVERYTHING you need for a fun and interesting sensory bin.  Four different themes to choose from Ocean & Sand, Construction Zone, Garden Critters and Ice Cream Shop.  Each set includes sensory sand, a variety of loose parts and a bin with a lid.  These sensory bins are the perfect gift for a child interested in sensory and/or imaginative play.  Recommended for children 3 years +.  

 What are the benefits of Sensory Bin Kits?

  • Invites sensory exploration.  Young children learn with their senses and these kits provide them with a rich sensory experience.
  • Helps to develop fine motor skills as the child explores the sand and loose parts.
  • Helps to develop focus and concentration.  These kits are excellent for independent play.  
  • Can be a calming activity and help with self-regulation.
  • Helps to develop creativity and imagination. 

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick:  Unit Blocks (Set of 50) ($97.99)

 

Why did we choose this?

We think a good set of wooden blocks is one of the best open-ended toys money can buy.  Blocks have so many developmental benefits and are incredibly versatile.  This set includes 50 natural blocks in various shapes and sizes.  These blocks are the definition of open-ended play and will stimulate a child’s imagination for years. 

 What are the benefits of Unit Blocks?

  • Helps to develop many skills, such as stacking, sorting, and matching. 
  • Invites imaginative play, which helps to improve hand-eye coordination, develops mathematical skills and promotes creativity. 
  • Teaches shapes and promotes language development around shape names, as well as directional words (under, above, beside, etc.).
  • Encourages problem solving skills, as children learn how to prevent their tower from toppling by building a sturdy base.
  • Promotes spatial awareness and logical thinking.

Budget: $100 - $200

Our Pick:  Yoto Player ($139.99)

 Make and share your own cards. Turn (almost) any audio into Yoto Cards for kids to control.

Why did we choose this?

We love that the Yoto Player can be used independently by the child.  It gives children the freedom and confidence to explore music and books that are of interest to them.  The Yoto Player is so easy to use and it’s completely private - no microphone or camera!  It comes with a bunch of cool features like a visual display so a child who can’t yet read knows what song/book is playing and an OK-to-wake nightlight and clock.  Check out our selection of books and albums (sold separately).  Recommended for children 3 years +.  

 What are the benefits of the Yoto Player?

  • Multi-Use:  Can be used as an audio player, night light, alarm clock and sleep aid
  • A helpful tool for families looking to reduce screen time, establish wake-up routines or ease separation anxiety (family members can record their voices on blank cards).   
  • It’s fun and easy for a child to use on their own.  There are only two knobs used to operate it!
  • Helps to develop language skills and encourages movement as the child sings and dances along to their favourite song.  
  • The Yoto Player and cards are very sturdy.  They were designed “to survive the trials of family life.”

Budget: $200+

Our Pick:Multifold Climber (starting at $429.99)

 Multifold climber Toronto, GTA, Pikler triangle Canada, toronto, made in canada, montessori, free shipping

Why did we choose this?

 Our Multifold Climber is one of our best-selling Large Active Toys.  This versatile climber will grow with your child and can be configured into six recommended shapes - 3 lower setups for new climbers and 3 more advanced setups for older children. Our Multifolds are made in Canada with solid maple rungs that can hold up to 100 lbs.  It comes fully assembled so you can use it right away!  

 What are the benefits of the Multifold? 

  • Helps to develop and strengthen gross motor skills.  
  • Helps to develop balance and coordination 
  • It helps children understand their own physical boundaries so that they can better judge other physical obstacles independently.  Helps to develop problem-solving skills and builds confidence.  
  • Increases spatial awareness and promotes proprioception, which is the awareness of the body’s position and movement
  • As the child grows the multifold will be used for imaginative, open-ended play
  • It’s easy to collapse so you can move it around the house, indoors or outdoors (just don’t leave it outside!)  Its unique design also makes it easy to store as it folds up or can be stored flat. 

Honourable Mention:

Four Year Olds

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick:Map of the World Floor Puzzle by Cobble Hill ($23.99)

Map of the World Floor Puzzle, Cobble Hill, puzzles for kids, floor puzzle for young kids, best puzzles for kids, geography puzzles, educational puzzles, puzzles of the world, 48 piece puzzle, The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Why did we choose this?

This beautiful and detailed puzzle of the world contains really large pieces that make it easy for young children to grasp and fit together on the floor. There is a lot to discover on this puzzle - all of the continents and oceans are labeled and it features icons, like animals and special places, that pertain to each continent. This puzzle combines fun, education and storytelling. Children can tell stories about what they have seen in the world firsthand, or what they have newly discovered on this exciting map! 

What are the benefits of large floor puzzles?

  • By manipulating the pieces and working to fit them together, children are developing their spatial awareness, hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills
  • Puzzles can be tricky and require problem solving skills, patience and perseverance
  • Floor puzzles encourage movement around the floor space, which helps to develop gross motor skills
  • When working with others, children are developing social skills, language skills and the ability to communicate effectively
  • This particular puzzle allows children to learn about the world - the continents, the oceans and all that’s in between!

Budget: $30 - $50

Our Pick: Plus Plus BIG Picture Puzzle Basic ($37.99)

Why did we choose this?

This is the perfect 2-in-1 Plus Plus toy. Use the 7 double-sided puzzle flash cards to build both basic and complex pictures or use the 60 BIG Plus Plus pieces to create your own unique 2D or 3D creations. BIG Plus Plus are larger than regular Plus Plus, making them perfect for young builders to manipulate. They are BPA-and phthalate-free and can be washed in a washing machine or dishwasher.

What are the benefits of playing with BIG Plus Plus?

  • Builds creative thinking skills
  • Encourages imaginative, open-ended play
  • Stimulates fine motor skills, focus, problem solving and patience
  • A toy that will grow with your child - the building possibilities are endless!
  • Building with pieces that are identical in shape and size helps children think logically and develop spatial awareness as they try to manipulate the pieces into 3-dimensional structures.
  • Children learn to follow the steps to completing a picture using the Plus Plus pieces
  • The cards have both basic and more complex pictures to help children enhance their skills with practice

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick:Children's Kitchen Bundle ($94.99)

Why did we choose this?

This kitchen set is perfect for children that have shown an interest in helping in the kitchen. It has everything your child need's and all the materials are perfectly sized for their hands. This is one of our most popular items!

What are the benefits of the Kitchen Bundle?

  • Fosters independence and confidence in caring for themselves and their family

  • Develops practical life skills

  • Give your child a sense of satisfaction and builds their confidence

  • Decrease picky eating. When children help prepare their own food, they are more likely to try new things and enjoy mealtimes! 

  • Teaching skills like squeezing, cutting, peeling, grating, and chopping, helps to refine and strengthen fine motor skills.

  • Develop executive functioning skills, as children learn to follow a sequence of steps when following a recipe.

Budget: $100 - $200

Our Pick:  Magna-Tiles® 100- Piece Set ($149.99)

 Magna Tiles 100 pc - The Montessori Room, Valtech, magnetic tiles, best magnetic tiles, magnetic building tiles, construction toys, building toys, open ended toys, imaginative play, educational toys, toys for any age, math toys, science toys, creative toys, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, 100 pc

Why did we choose this?

A set of high quality magnetic tiles, like Magna-Tiles®, are a fantastic investment. Not only are they educationally beneficial but they are incredible for open-ended, imaginative play.In addition to its endless creative uses, Magna Tiles combine Math, Science and Spatial and Tactile learning. Children of all ages, and even adults, love playing with them, making them a very popular choice

What are the benefits of Magna-Tiles®?

  • They are open-ended and versatile; perfect for imaginative play
  • They help to develop critical thinking skills, hand eye coordination, problem solving skills, perseverance, fine motor skills, language development, spatial awareness, building skills, concentration and focus.
  • They are durable enough to use in the playroom, classroom or outside
  • They can be used on any magnetic surface - both horizontally and vertically
  • Explores scientific concepts related to magnetic principles, force and motion or even electricity
  • Learn early math concepts, such as fractions, graphing, patterning, and 2-D and 3-D shape names

Budget: $200+

Our Pick:Waldorf Rocker (starting at $339.99)

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Why did we choose this?

Our Canadian-made Waldorf Rocker board is a toy that children gravitate towards. It's an amazing tool for developing balance and coordination but it can also be used in so many imaginative and open-ended ways - turn it on its side to make it a market stand or puppet theatre, flip it over to make a tunnel or mountain to scale, or put a cushion on it to make a cozy reading nook. Its uses are endless!

What are the benefits of the Waldorf Rocker?

  • It helps stimulate the vestibular system and proprioception (awareness of one’s physical body and its parts)
  • It helps stimulate the imagination and creative, open-ended play
  • Gross motor development - they are a great physical outlet for kids who are stuck indoors
  • Helps to develop balance, coordination and strengthen muscles
  • Develops the connection between the brain and the body
  • It helps children understand their own physical boundaries so that they can better judge other physical obstacles independently

Honourable Mention:

Five Year Olds

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick:Plus Plus Basic (240 pcs) ($22.99)

Plus-Plus Basic - 240 pieces, Plus Plus, building toys, educational toys, open ended play, imaginative play, best toys for 5 year olds, best travel toy for older kids, building toys, fine motor skills, The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Why did we choose this?

This Plus Plus tube contains all the basic colours and is the perfect open-ended toy! The pieces are BPA-free and phthalate-free and allow children to build both 2D puzzles or mosaics or 3D creations. The tube comes without any instructions or guides for what to build so that children can let their imaginations run wild. Plus Plus is part engineering, part art and lots of fun! They encourage children to think carefully about how small, identical parts fit together to create something unique and amazing. 

Bonus - the tube is a reusable, travel-friendly container!

What are the benefits of playing with Plus Plus?

  • Builds creative thinking skills
  • Encourages imaginative, open-ended play
  • Stimulates fine motor skills, focus, problem solving and patience
  • A toy that will grow with your child - the building possibilities are endless!
  • Building with pieces that are identical in shape and size helps children think logically and develop spatial awareness as they try to manipulate the pieces into 3-dimensional structures.

Budget: $30 - $50

Our Pick:Magneti’books ($32.99)

 English Alphabet Magneti'book - The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Magneti'book, English alphabet games, Janod, magnet games, travel toys, travel games, educational games, educational toys, best toys for travel, learn the alphabet, magnetic alphabet

Why did we choose this?

Through the magic of magnetic games, children can learn while having fun. We carry 6 options: English Alphabet, 4 Seasons, Learn to Tell Time, Space, Racers and Animals. They are perfect for travel; they are easy to bring anywhere! 

“Learn to Tell Time” allows children to recreate everyday scenes based on the time on the clock, making it a great way to visually show children what time it is.

“English Alphabet” teaches children how to write a word correctly based on the illustrated magnet.

“Animals”allows children to recreate the animal indicated on the model card or use their imagination to create their own unique and hilarious animals.

“4 Seasons”allows children to create or invent beautiful scenes throughout the seasons. They can use the 4 model cards to help inspire their creations or invent their own stories. 

"Space" allows children to discover the mysteries of our universe and the planets. 

"Racers" allows children to create and invent vehicles, using either the 18 model cards or their own imaginations! 

What are the benefits of magnetic educational games?

  • Children develop fine motor skills and hand eye coordination as they manipulate the magnetic pieces with their hands and fingers
  • Children will tell stories related to the scenes they create, which will help them develop language skills and communication skills
  • Children learn about specific topics - English alphabet, telling time, the 4 seasons and animals
  • Creating appropriate scenes to fit a given theme takes problem solving skills, perseverance and patience

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick:Design and Drill Marble Maze ($51.99)

Design and Drill Marble Maze - The Montessori Room, Educational Insights, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Marble maze, construction sets, best toys for 5 year olds, best gifts for 5 year olds, toys with drills, building sets

Why did we choose this?

The Design and Drill Marble Maze is a STEM skills extravaganza! This hands-on DIY maze maker combines construction play and engineering for a challenging and fun free play experience. The kid-friendly drill, bolts and track pieces of varying lengths and shapes allow children to complete 10 different maze challenges or use their imagination and skill to create their own unique mazes.

What are the benefits of the Design and Drill Marble Maze?

  • Teaches trial and error - children drop the ball into the maze to test the track and make adjustments as needed
  • Builds critical thinking skills
  • Explores the principles of science and engineering
  • Develops fine motor skills and hand eye coordination
  • Encourages patience and perseverance

Budget: $100 - $200

Our Pick:Kinderfeets Indoor/Outdoor Play Tent($164.99)

Kinderfeets Indoor/Outdoor Play Tent, kids play tent, Toronto, Canada, indoor tent, tent for kids, pretend tent

 Why did we choose this?

Play Tents provide children with a special, private space just for them - a space for pretend or fantasy play, a space to socialize with friends and a space to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. This Kinderfeets tent can achieve all of this both indoors and outdoors! Not only does it require no tools for assembly but it is beautifully crafted from sustainable New Zealand pine wood and 100% natural organic cotton fabric. It is the perfect addition to any playroom, bedroom or backyard!

What are the benefits of a play tent?

  • Inspires imaginative play
  • Provides a great way to develop social skills, gross motor skills, connection to the outdoors and mindfulness practices
  • A cozy space for reading, quiet time or independent play
  • A space for emotional regulation  

Budget: $200 +

Our Pick:Kinderfeets Pikler Bamboo Dome ($389.99)

 Kinderfeets Pikler Bamboo Dome

Why did we choose this?

The Kinderfeets Dome is not only fun but is also physically beneficial. It promotes gross motor development - climb, hang, build a fort or practice your balance - while also offering endless imaginative play possibilities. It is beautifully crafted using responsibly-sourced beechwood, bamboo and water-based varnish. 

What are the benefits of the Kinderfeets Pikler Bamboo Dome?

  • Gross motor development - climbing, hanging, swinging
  • Helps to develop coordination and strengthens muscles 
  • Builds confidence as children test their physical limits
  • It helps children understand their own physical boundaries so that they can better judge other physical obstacles independently
  • Develops the vestibular sense - movement and balance
  • Encourages children to socialize

Honourable Mention:

Six Year Olds +

Budget: Under $30

Our Pick: Kids Scavenger Hunt ($29.99)

Kids Scavenger Hunt, Outset Media, scavenger hunt game for kids, outdoor games, indoor games, games for 6 year olds, best games for kids, birthday gift ideas, holiday gift ideas for kids, The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Why did we choose this?

Make coordinating scavenger hunts easy! Kids Scavenger Hunt is an active game that can be played indoors or outdoors. This means it is the perfect game for children to play rain or shine! Children actively seek objects based on the cards in their hand. The first team to collect all the clues is crowned the winner. 

What are the benefits of a Scavenger Hunt game?

  • Builds problem solving skills
  • Teaches children how to follow a set of clues
  • Encourages teamwork
  • Great for the body and mind - children move around to find objects and have to think carefully about where to find them

Budget: $30 - $50

Our Pick:CreaMagnet($44.99)

CreaMagnet - The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, tangrams, magnetic toys for kids, travel toys, visual spatial toys, matching games, magnetic boards, creative toys, best gift for 3 year old, best gift for 4 year old, best toys for 3 year old, best toys for 4 year old

Why did we choose this?

This large wooden creaMagnet desk includes 100 magnetic shapes, 30 image cards and a very clever storage box built into a lap desk. Children pick up a card and reconstruct the image on the large magnetic board using the different magnetic pieces. 

What are the benefits of tangram toys and games?

  • Helps children improve fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and visual-spatial awareness
  • Tangrams are often use to develop problem solving skills, critical thinking skills, perceptual reasoning and mathematical skills, such as symmetry and geometry
  • Encourages creativity when creating unique artistic designs
  • Develops language around direction - flip, rotate, etc.

Budget: $50 - $100

Our Pick: Q-Ba-Maze Starter Stunt Set($69.99)

Q-BA-MAZE 2.0 Starter Stunt Set, Mindware Toys, marble run, best marble run, sensory toys, STEM toys, building toys, construction toys, educational toys, open-ended play, imaginative play, best toys for 6 year old, The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

 Why did we choose this?

This patented Q-BA-MAZE 2.0 Stunt Set puts the laws of motion to the test! The ingenious piecesinterlock seamlessly in endless configurations, making them easy to take apart when done. It requires no tools aside from the imagination! This set includes double-exit cubes to keep you guessing which way the marbles will go. The structures can be built both vertically and horizontally.and children can use their imagination to create structures that resemble animals, robots or geometric shapes.

What are the benefits of the Q-Ba-Maze Starter Stunt Set?

  • Explores the principles of science and engineering
  • Encourages creative, open-ended play - children can create structures using their imagination
  • Teaches problem solving skills and trial and error 
  • Develops spatial awareness, fine motor skills and hand eye coordination
  • Requires patience and perseverance
  • It’s a toy that grows with your child - children can start with simple maze structures and gradually develop more complex building skills

Budget: $100 - $200

 Our Pick:Connetix Tiles 92 Piece Ball Run Pack ($134.99)

Connetix Tiles 92 Piece Ball Run Pack

Why did we choose this?

This magnetic tile marble run is the perfect way to keep children engaged in creative play and off their screens! The tiles made by Connetix are stronger than most magnetic tiles, meaning you can build higher and more complex structures. The Connetix Ball Run provides a much needed outlet for creative and active play when it's too cold or rainy to be outside. 

What are the benefits of this Connetix Ball Run kit?

  • Promotes the use of imagination and creativity
  • Stimulates problem solving skills, hand-eye coordination, cooperation, collaboration, social skills development and patience
  • Builds spatial awareness
  • Teaches planning and follow through
  • Fun for almost any age and it's a great way to spend quality time together as a family.

Budget: $200 +

Our Pick:

Brooklyn House + Peg People Set ($234.99 + various prices of peg people sets)

 Brooklyn House - The Montessori Room  Peg People, Made in Canada Toys, Open-ended toys, Waldorf Toys, Peg people sets, Toronto, Canada Sets, Montessori toys, open ended toys, imaginative play, wooden peg people, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, made in Canada

Or Southlands Stables + Holztiger Farm Animals ($299.99 + various prices of animals) 

Southlands Stable - The Montessori Room, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Conifer Toys, Made in Canada, wooden toys, wooden stable, wooden farm house, imaginative play, open ended play

Why did we choose this?

The Brooklyn House (and/or Southlands Stable) provides the perfect backdrop for any play scenario. It is beautifully handcrafted in Canada and requires no fasteners or tools for assembly. Paired with peg people (Holztiger animals), a miniature world of open-ended, imaginative play can emerge. The natural and unfinished design allows children to add their own personal touches, making this house (stable) a blank canvas both physically and for the imagination. 

What are the benefits of the Brooklyn House and Southlands Stable?

  • It requires no fasteners or tools to assemble, making it easy to disassemble for storage
  • It is incredibly durable and can withstand a lot of weight (approx. 300 lbs)
  • The Southlands Stable has a roof that is removable, allowing easy access to the interior, as well as removable sides so animals can roam freely
  • When not in use for imaginative play, the Brooklyn House can be used as a beautiful bedside table!
  • Before age 6, children’s imaginative play is often related to real-life experiences and usually includes props and tons of language. The Brooklyn House (Southlands Stable) allows children to play out experiences from the world around them
  • Helps to develop language skills, storytelling skills and social-emotional skills
  • Encourages open-ended, imaginative play
  • Provides children with an avenue to express their feelings through role play

Honourable Mention: 

 

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