This guide provides the best toys and gift ideas for 1 year old boys.  Included are the top toys and unique gifts, as well as an explanation of the developmental stage at 12 months. Updated for 2019! 

Developmental Stage for 1 year olds


What They Like to do

When thinking about what toys to buy for a one year old, we first need to understand what they like to do.  

Right now 1 year olds love to explore – open drawers and cupboards.

They can now bang things together, hold cups and use things as they were intended (example run a brush through their hair or hold a phone to their ear).

Physically they can sit on their own, crawl, stand and maybe even cruise along furniture or walk a few steps on their own (source).

Toys that encourage exploration and help them perfect their new found mobility will be their favorites.

Best Toys for 1 year old boys

Developmental Differences – 1 year old Boys

There are natural differences between little boys and little girls preferences at twelve months,  which can translate into which toys they like to play with. points out that toddler boys love action and are more engaged when watching mechanical motion over human motion. 

 A one year old boy can be two months ahead of a little girl when it comes to understanding motion and would rather watch windshield wipers going back and forth then looking at people moving.

Toys with movement (balls, wheels, etc)  will likely be their favorites.

Click here for our Gift Guide: Best toys and Gift Ideas for 1 year girls

Gift Guide:

Toy and Gift Ideas for 1 Year Old Boys

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Best Gifts For 1 Year Old Boys

Selected based on what your little boys likes to do at this age.  This list contains classics and new brands you can be confident in gifting.

This 2019 award winning toy is perfect for 12+m.

You and your little one can play familiar songs together with the music sheets provided or you can let him bang away and create his own masterpiece.

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Little Tikes® have made a wonderful multi-function activity center.  

One year olds can crawl under the giraffe, walk through the door and play with all the balls.  

Babies on the move will love practicing their new skills here.

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Give your little boy a chair to call his own.

The Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages chair is the perfect place for him to read his books, practice counting and learn how to go from sitting to standing.

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This ball pit features a playhouse, crawl tunnel and basketball hoop.  

Hours of fun for your little boy.

Ball sold separately.

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This childhood classic supports early learning, improves hand-eye coordination and imaginative play.

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Award Winning Toys

These toys have been awarded prizes based on their design. They are our favorites for 1 year old boys.

A xylophone that can be played in variety of ways and helps with fine motor skill development.

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Hape has amazing wooden toys and their toys appear a lot on this list. Hape doesn’t disappoint with this pull along snail that includes a shape sorter.  

Winner of a Parent’s Choice Award.

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Subscription Boxes For Toddlers

For the 1 year old who has everything. If this gift is for a second, third or fourth child, then something unique to just them will be even more special.

Monthly subscription boxes are becoming very popular. You receive a package each month and can choose between getting toys or books.

The Board Book Box is great for children aged 0-3.

In each box you will find four perfect reads that will bring so much joy to the baby or toddler in your life.

Read our full review here

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Educational Toys

STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering and Math toys can be given as early as 1 years old.

STEM Toys are gaining momentum as parents want to expose their children as early as possible to these concepts.

This toy gives toddlers an opportunity to color-coordinate, rearrange and rotate gears so the caterpillar “moves.”

A handy toy to have around for quiet time.

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This STEM toy fosters imagination and color & shape recognition and is suitable for children aged 12 Months and up.

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