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Our favorite toy ideas for kids under 5

Keep them occupied and active

Those toddlin’ little ones in your life have infinite potential for fun and learning before they reach the age of 5 — and there are plenty of toys on the market to cater to both. You shouldn't have to choose between a smart child and an entertained one, so we've collected a few of our favorite toys that combine the two ideas for one good time.

InnoTab Interactive Learning Tablet

InnoTab Interactive Learning Tablet

Sometimes your wee one might be physically tuckered out, but her mind still needs to keep busy. This kids' tablet combines games, creative art apps, an e-reader, MP3 capability and more into one durable device that’s sure to keep your little person occupied on a long drive or just before bedtime. (Barnes and Noble, $80)

Alphie

Alphie

Let this adorable electronic robot take your child on an adventure to learn new words, colors, numbers and more! Insert one of the robot’s cards into his chest for a new lesson each day. Alphie introduces children to math, letters, reasoning and cause and effect with fun, interactive quizzes and games. (Kmart, $40)

Lego Duplo My First Farm

Lego Duplo My First Farm

Turn your city slickin’ toddler into a down-home farmer! The Lego Duplo collection takes classic Lego building blocks and merges them with kid-friendly scenes like farm animals, zoo animals, trains, Disney princesses and more. The unisex My First Farm scene allows kids to explore the concepts of puzzles, gravity, construction and more while offering parents teaching opportunities. Why do piggies like to play in mud? How does a sheep’s wool become a sweater? You'll get to explore all these questions and more, sparked from one easy-to-expand play set. (Toys "R" Us, $25)

Inkoos Glow in the Dark Plush Dog

Inkoos Glow in the Dark Plush Dog

It’s a fact: Your child is going to find inopportune places to let his creativity run free. Rather than painting the walls to cover his creative experiments every few months, allow him to write on something he normally wouldn’t — his stuffed animals! The Inkoos glow-in-the-dark plush lets your kiddo ink up his squeezable pal with a variety of colorful, washable markers. When your child is ready for a blank canvas, simply toss the doggy in the washer for a new slate. (Target, $25)

B. Meowsic Keyboard

Introduce your child to creating music with this adorable cat-themed keyboard. The cutesy kitty boasts multiple tones and sounds from banjo to bells, plus a microphone to record your child’s first composition. Music education has been proven to improve math skills, so get your child interested in music early! (Target, $27)

Tell us: What is your top priority when buying a new toy for your child?

B. Meowsic Keyboard

More toy ideas

Top 10 toys for preschool girls
Top 10 toys for preschool boys
Best toys for encouraging imagination

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