Favorite Toys for a 3 Year Old

posted by yazmin

I was warned that three-year-olds were worse than the terrible twos. So far the biggest difference I’ve noticed is that my girls want to do everything themselves. Sometimes it’s nice – like when they can put on their own shoes, but other times the tantrums are equally as bad as last year.

This year for their birthday and Christmas the girls received a lot of great toys. They continue to play with many of their favorite toys from their second birthday and even some favorites from their first birthday. We’ve added a bunch of new great toys to the list.

3rd Birthday Gifts

Here are ten of my favorite toys for three-year-olds:


We gave the girls a LeapPad for their third birthday. It has quickly become one of their favorite toys. It has educational games built-in and you can purchase additional games online. I love that it’s kid-friendly and I don’t have to worry about them clicking around on my tablet. It’s also extremely durable. It’s been dropped in the snow, down the stairs and dragged all around the house and it still works! I love the idea of bringing it along on long car rides, doctor’s waiting rooms, or when I just need a ten minute break.


Santa brought my girls an easel this year for Christmas. They love anything to do with arts & crafts so an easel was a perfect gift. I bought the KidKraft brand because I love their quality and the neutral color, but there are tons of other options at all different price points. I’d also recommend dry erase crayons since little ones never remember to put the caps back on markers.

Big Wheels

Do you remember having a Big Wheel as a kid? I don’t think I had one but I know that my little brother did. 3-years-old is the perfect age to introduce a bike. The girls have been able to enjoy their’s a few times when we were having mild winter days but I’m really looking forward to them wheeling around come spring!

Look & Find Books

The Look & Find books are a favorite in our house. They come in all different themes. We are currently obsessed with the Frozen Look and Find book. It’s like a modern day Where’s Waldo? book. Each page has a new scene and several items that you have to find hidden within the picture. It introduces great vocabulary and helps practice concentration skills.


Do you remember the 2014 Super Bowl video advertising GoldieBlox? It immediately got my attention. It shows girls trading in their pink toys for new toys that encourage them to “build like all the boys.” I love the idea of raising strong daughters who can do anything boys can do. While I’m not opposed to giving my girls baby dolls or EZ bake ovens, I love that I have other options too. At 3-years-old, my girls are on the young side for GoldieBlox but they already love building with these toys and I must admit that I have fun with them too!

Vtech Go! Go! Smart Wheels Playset

This toy keeps my kids very busy. It’s pretty tall and has several loops, turns, and music that my kids love. They can even race cars against each other. Each track attaches to additional playsets so that you can have an ultimate giant playset. It comes with one car but I would suggest buying at least two more smart wheels for extra fun.

Melissa & Doug Magnetic Puzzles

My girls are just starting to learn how to assemble puzzles independently. We have a few floor puzzles and other peg puzzles that they can do with help. They particularly love this magnetic fishing puzzle. You use the attached fishing pole to catch the sea animal.

FurReal Friends

My girls have played with FurReal Friends at different friends houses so I knew this was a must-have toy. There are several different pet varieties for boys and girls. We have two dogs that can be walked on their leash, make puppy noises, and do tricks. My girls love them.

Roller Coaster

My girls love this toy. There’s one at the kid’s gym that we belong to and they are always drawn to it. I’ve never seen a kid on it without a smile. It takes up a bit of room inside the house but you can always bring it outside during nice weather.

Gears! Gears! Gears!

I love giving my kids toys that encourage them to be creative and use their imagination. This toy is perfect for my daughter, Juliette, she loves to build things and move around pieces. Grandma has a set of these gears at her house and they are always a favorite. The gears can be assembled in endless ways to make almost anything. This is a great quiet toy that will be played with for years to come.

What toys does your 3-year-old love?

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