Around the 1-year mark, babies really start loving those classic multicolored stacking toys - and not just because they want to gum the doughnut-shaped rings. Their coordination is getting better, so they're finally able to place the pieces on top of each other. Plus, they've discovered cause and effect, making the crash of knocking things over simply irresistible. To play along:
- Have a Block Party: Cubes are the foundation for all the bridges, roads, and cities he'll be erecting in the future. Choose small wooden blocks for him to stack up, or go for lightweight plastic building sets that won't hurt as much when they, invariably, hit him as they topple.
- Be a Bookworm: Whether they're made of board, cloth, or that puffy plastic meant for playing in the tub, books are easy to handle and will pile up nicely. So will household items, such as plastic containers and measuring cups.
- Make Some Noise Expect some crashing, banging, and a bit of a mess when your tot becomes a true demolition expert. Applaud his work, and he'll know he's on the right track.