Preschoolers (4-5 years)

Preschoolers and kindergartners have longer attention spans than toddlers. Typically they talk a lot and ask a lot of questions. They like to experiment with things and with  their still-emerging physical skills. They like to play with friends—and don’t like to lose! They can take turns—and sharing one toy by two or more children is often possible  for older preschoolers and kindergarteners.little-girl-reading-912380_960_720

Good toys for 4 to 5 year-olds:

  • Things for solving problems—puzzles (with 12 to 20+ pieces), blocks that snap together, collections and other smaller objects to sort by length, width, height,  shape, color, smell, quantity, and other features—collections of plastic bottle caps, plastic bowls and lids, keys, shells, counting bears, small colored blocks. (Check my recommended products.)
  • Things for pretending and building—many blocks for building complex structures, transportation toys, construction sets, child-sized furniture (“apartment” sets, play food), dress-up clothes, dolls with accessories, puppets, and simple puppet theaters, and sand and water play toys
  • Things to create with—large and small crayons and markers, large and small paintbrushes and fingerpaint, large and small paper for drawing and painting, colored construction paper, preschooler-sized scissors, chalkboard and large and small chalk, modeling clay and play dough, modeling tools, paste, paper and cloth  scraps for collage, and instruments—rhythm instruments and keyboards, xylophones, maracas, and tambourines
  • Picture books with even more words and more detailed pictures than toddler books. (Check my recommended products.)
  • CD and DVD players with a variety of music (of course, phonograph players and cassette recorders work too!)
  • Things for using their large and small muscles—large and small balls for kicking and throwing/catching, ride-on equipment including tricycles, tunnels, taller  climbers with soft material underneath, wagons and wheelbarrows, plastic bats and balls, plastic bowling pins, targets and things to throw at them, and a  workbench with a vise, hammer, nails, and saw. (Check my recommended product
  • If a child has access to a computer: programs that are interactive (the child can do something) and that children can understand (the software uses graphics and  spoken instruction, not just print), children can control the software’s pace and path, and children have opportunities to explore a variety of concepts on several  levels



  • Thanks for the very useful info Efi. I have a 3 year old and she loves playing with jigsaws, building blocks and Lego.I really feel it is helping with developing her thinking and other skills.It also keeps her entertained for hours and sometimes find myself building with her for hours also.

  • Hi Efi! I love your page. I have twin 5 year-olds and I must say, you are right on with many of these toys. My little girl can sit down with construction paper and crayons and entertain herself for hours. Whereas her brother likes to role play with many of his action figure toys. This website is a wonderful resource for individuals who do not know what to buy their niece or nephew or grandchildren. Nice job!

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