So confused. Please help me figure this out! I want to provide my son with toys ... but I also want them to be "open ended" so he can have "self directed play" ... he HATES toys ... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 06-05-2012, 08:23 PM - Thread Starter
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So if I went and bought toys at a toy store, even a boutique one in town, they would not be the all natural toys I see online.


I did buy some things from Michael Olaf - like the first chair and desk, radio flyer walker wagon, the music box ... and he has assorted toys from Etsy that are all mostly wooden and are "montessori"  in a treasure basket ...


he gets BORED and fast ...


he'll sit for a very long time if something has his interest - like new things etc. but I cannot go buy a handful of things to excite him everyday and even if I could, what should I buy???


So confused. I'm almost getting to feel at a loss ... like there's no hope. I love when he'd keep himself busy but now he wont unless there's something new ... I do the toy rotating but I isn't working.


Please help and give me tips!


He's going to be 10 months old, is teething - well he got teeth in, and he started crawling a few days ago.


Thank you.

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#2 of 10 Old 06-06-2012, 05:20 AM
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Some kids are not toy people.  My daughter is one of those.  She played far more with plastic bathroom cups at that age than anything "toyish".  At 10 months I wouldn't worry at all about toys, to be honest.  I'd go for sensory experiences.  Buy different fabric scraps with different textures for feeling; get a bowl with rice and let him spoon and play; go outside a lot and let him crawl around and see the world; blow bubbles; do water play in the sink or tub; play games with colorful playsilks or fabrics ... just fun experiences.  I'd also look into fine motor activities, like simple wooden puzzles or where babe has to practice grasping and controlling finger movements, like shape sorters or pegs.  At 6.5 my daughter still does not like toys but she loves art supplies and music and books.  We also have indoor movement equipment like balance boards, chin-up bar, doorway swing, balance beam.  At 10 months, save your money!  Kids accumulate lots of "stuff" as they age (and they often don't want to get rid of it) so the longer you can wait, the better.  10 month olds have no attention spans whatever (and this lasts until around age 2)--they just flit from one thing to another leaving a path of destruction, LOL.  

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#3 of 10 Old 06-06-2012, 07:06 AM
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I totally went overboard with toys for my first baby. ITA with Lux to save your money on getting a whole bunch of toys. Or consider investing in wonderful open-ended toys that your son can/will play with for 10+ years, such as play silks (see Sarah's Silks or Etsy), blocks, felted wool balls, etc.


Some great resources:

Nova Natural:


Bella Luna Toys:

The Wooden Wagon:


Check out the Waldorf Steals & Deals thread for more inspiration!



Michelle --- AMAzing Mama to DD1 (04.07) & DD2 (05.10)    
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#4 of 10 Old 06-06-2012, 07:12 AM
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Luxperpetua has some great suggestions. I agree. Save your money with a 10 month old. Toys only get more expensive as they get older. Here are two inexpensive things we enjoyed at that age. 1) Take an empty tissue box and stuff it with old silk scarves. You can truly cram a lot in those little boxes and kids loooove reaching in and pulling all of them out one after the other. 2) Brightly colored squares of felt in rainbow colors. I used them to talk about the colors and sometimes we ordered or stacked them according to hue. Years later they were discovered and cut up for art projects. Definitely worth the very small "investment." Try not to overthink any of this. In my experience, kids will use almost any toy in open-ended ways if you don't do things to forbid it. (Of course, you've got to be willing to let them "break" them.) I have found that providing cardboard boxes and other recyclable items hanging around the house helped them use their toys in unexpected ways. Later on at about age 5 we began to go through lots and lots of tape! You didn't mention picture books or picture cards, musical instruments, balls, baby dolls, trucks and trains? The old standbys were the best for us in addition to spending a lot of time at the park. You will figure this out, don't worry!! smile.gif

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#5 of 10 Old 06-06-2012, 03:10 PM
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10 months is a little too young to worry about keeping his interest, he is so little that everything is new to him and is exciting. My DD didn't finally sit down and self play until she was around 2, and now she is 3 and is able to play by herself all day. 

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#6 of 10 Old 06-07-2012, 09:22 AM
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One of my kids (at around 15 months) played mostly with a spatula and funnel.  Another spent HOURS a day, for like a month, riding through the house on a wooden toddler trike, clutching a mylar balloon she'd gotten for her birthday.  So yeah, yours is still pretty young for "toys" per se.

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#7 of 10 Old 06-07-2012, 10:50 AM
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I agree with the others.  It is very early still.  Your baby needs you, for now, and little else.  Kitchen tools seems to be very popular at this age, along with learning about various food textures.  The rest will come in time.  When pretend play starts to come around age two, then things become so very fun and anything becomes anything.

Mothering an Autumn (08) , a Spring (11) , and another Autumn! (Nov. 2013)

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#8 of 10 Old 06-08-2012, 04:04 PM
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10m is really young to be taking an active interest in toys of any types. i think it is the age not the toys.  I'd give him some books and a wooden spoon/colander and throw in some art supplies.

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#9 of 10 Old 06-10-2012, 05:18 PM
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I am just going to restate what the other mamas have already said...10 month olds do NOT have a very long attention span!  I think your expectations are too high.  Right now, the best thing you can do is provide him with a safe environment that he is free to explore.  Especially since he just started crawling.  Allow him to have a cabinet in the kitchen that he can go in and out of, a drawer where he can take things out and put back in, set up a little plastic tub on the floor in the kitchen and let him play in some water with some toys while you wash the dishes, a few small balls that he can roll/throw and then "retrieve" (sorry, for lack of a better term!), stackers, a few playsilks, a toy truck or two and a soft doll and that is about all you need!  Singing and doing nursery rhymes, finger games will also count as play. 

Tanya, wife to my best friend momma to Blake 2/02, Jacob 5/04, Parker 12/05 and MaKenna : 6/09
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#10 of 10 Old 06-28-2012, 07:02 AM
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Lots of great ideas!!  Wearing him often, if you/he are able, will keep his attention on whatever you are doing.  Also, I am a fan of outdoor-as-much-as-possible.

Other than that, great open-ended toys such as blocks, balls, cloth, and if you are able to make anything on your own...whatever you can come up with.  It is wonderful for children to see their parents creating things in front of them.  


I used a playpen in my routine with my children.  When they were 10 months, I would put them in for just a few minutes each day at the same time.  I would give them something (usually a kitchen object), and I would work near them.  They were supervised, but contained.  As they grew, I would put them in for more time until, eventually, they would stay in the playpen for their entire afternoon nap--sometimes they would sleep, sometimes not...and they did that until they could get out of the playpen by themselves!  They all grew up loving that time (for the most part) and eventually would spend a great deal of time just investigating every aspect of their "toy".  I always made sure that they got a special item that they wouldn't get outside of the playpen.  Whether it was a special bowl and spoon or a funnel or special blocks, they loved having that time to just play.  Today, at 11, 9, and 6, my three children all have very strong attention spans.  


At 10 months, a child will not often "play" by themselves.  Instead, they will model everything you do.  Organize a daily rhythm and do the things that you want him to do.  If you want him to play with an object, begin playing in front of him.  Investigate an object yourself (look at a wooden spoon and study it in front of him...then hand it to him and see what he does).  Talk and sing to him often.  He is extremely open to your life-forces right now and will imitate everything you do.  You can do anything and he will learn from you by your example.  Set a very good rhythm for every-day life (you can waver from this rhythm, but it should be a strong "default" setting, if that makes sense), and everything will follow.  Teach by example.  

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