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Expanding Language Holiday Gift Guide (18 months and 3 years)

Welcome to part two of our holiday guide. The holidays can be stressful and trying to find the right gift for everyone only adds to the stress. When it comes to gifts for kiddos, you really don’t need an expensive toy that makes tons of sounds and has bright lights. Actually those are not the toys I recommend for your little one to promote speech and language development. Oh don’t get me wrong. Those toys can be SO fun and honestly grandma is probably going to get your kiddos some crazy electronic ones this year and that is OKAY! But here are some suggestions to help find toys that are great for expanding your child’s language development. A lot of these toys I use in speech therapy with kiddos or with my son!

Non-electronic: I recommend non-electronic toys because most electronic toys do the play part for kids and then they don’t need you! They can play by themselves, which is amazing if you’re a busy parent trying to get some basic things done. But when it comes to speech and language development children learn by interacting with you.

YOU! You really are the best “toy” for your kiddo! You have so much language to teach them. And children are so curious and crave learning. Most any activity where you can be involved will help your child with speech and language, especially if the activity requires your help!

At 18 months, your child should be using around 50 words, by 2 years old they should be using 200-300 words and 2 word sentences, and by 3 years old your child should be using 1,000 words. Here are some toys that can help expand your child’s language:

Play dough

Play dough is such a fun and engaging toy, although I know how mess it can be! Here are a couple different play dough sets!

Spinning toy



If you want to up your ballon game this is a great one for kids of all ages. The eight year olds I work with also love this toy!


Tunnels and Tents

Pretend play

I love adding these bandaids because they are reusable so you can have kiddos request where to put the bandaid targeting body parts and prepositions.

Here's another doctor set

This is just a small list of my favorites. If you need more ideas or if you want more specific ideas on how to target words for expanding language, please feel free to reach out!


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