The Best Toys for Imaginative Play
From an early age, many kids are already pros at using their imagination. Give them a big cardboard box and it becomes a space station, a top-secret fort, or a super exclusive new restaurant. Pretend play relies on kids tapping into their imagination, and it’s incredibly important that they do so. Flexing their imaginations helps kids process the world around them and tap into their own creativity in a positive way, so we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite toys that encourage imaginative play.
How to Choose Toys for Imaginative Play
The good news is that kids can use their imagination to play with just about anything, and the best toys for encouraging kids to pretend can be simple, battery-free, and affordable. In general, look for toys and games that are open-ended, with less formal structure, rules, and objectives than, say, a board game. These toys don’t provide all the answers, so kids are pushed to come up with their own ideas.
Our Top Pick
Our top pick, the LEGO Creative Suitcase, is $19.99 and perfect for kids of any gender, ages 4 and up for solo or group play. Building toys like LEGO stimulate imaginative play while strengthening hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and problem-solving, and this suitcase gives them a place to stow their bricks when they’re done creating.
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