Toddler Toys | Jaques London

 I know Christmas is just over and your house has probably been overrun with new toys but if you're like me and have a January baby you'll be on the lookout for something more. My little boy turned 2 at the beginning of January and I wanted to get him some good quality, versatile toys that will last him for years. The perfect place to look is Jaques of London.

If you've never heard of Jaques, they're a British brand that have been around for decades. Since 1795 Jaques have been designing and creating games and toys for families and children, making them the oldest games company in the world. This family run business still produce handmade wooden toys and games. Their range are clearly all made with growing children in mind as they promote creativity, learning, play, exploration and imagination. As a teacher they're all the types of toys and games that I value in my classroom.

The toys come in beautiful packaging which makes them the perfect gift. The website is so well organised so even if you're not very sure what would suit different aged children they make the decision making process a lot easier.  I'm very excited to be collaborating with them on this post and Ollie seems to have been over the moon to get the chance to try them out too.

The first toy I picked out was the Kids Hammering Bench. This jumped out at me as the perfect Montessori toy for a 2 year old meaning it gives children the opportunity to explore, be creative, to engage independently and collaboratively. Basically, I hoped this £14.99 wooden toy would be a compact toy with so much potential and it's been exactly that. I didn't even get the chance to take a photo of the brightly coloured wooden bench before Ollie was getting in about it.

The overall idea of this toy is to hammer the wooden pegs which helps with hand eye coordination and building strength. However,  independently Ollie has been developing his fine motor skills by removing and inserting the chunky pegs as well as balancing the pegs which led to lots of laughter when the towers fell down. Together we've been able to use the brightly coloured pegs to work on learning colours - hitting, removing or inserting the colour I say. 

It's amazing that such as simple and affordable toy can capture their imagination, develop so many skills and be played with over and over again. It's fast become a firm favourite and I can easily see why it's one of Jaques Best Sellers.

The next toy I chose was the Wooden Tool Kit. This construction toy is a better suited for children closer to 3 or 4 but I couldn't resist having it for independent play when Ollie is a little bit older, though it's been well explored already.  This set has so much learning potential. From fine motor skills to the early life skill opportunities. This tool kit comes complete with tools, screws and bolts allowing Ollie to be just like his Dad, Grandad (and sometimes his Mum) doing the DIY around the house.

While this set promotes role play and curiosity about the real world, children can work on their hand eye coordination and hand control as they hammer nails and use the screwdriver to twist and tighten. Children can develop their creativity as they take on the role of all sorts of people coming to the rescue with their tool box - their imagination really can run wild.  

Again we've explored the different colours which are so bright and vibrant, collecting the yellow, red, green and blue screws. I love that each time Ollie reaches for these toys there's an opportunity to learn, to express himself, to develop and grow.  

If you're looking for affordable wooden toys for your children, a gift for babies, toddlers or young children then definitely check out Jaques London. There's even classic games on their for adults so the fun doesn't end with the children. And if you're looking ahead to Summer they've got outdoor and garden games - there's so much to choose from!

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