We’ve been working on ways to ensure our younger kids don’t feel upset with a new baby in the house. Aside from including them in all baby-related activities and centering what we can on the fact that they’re an awesome big sibling, we’ve also been looking into gifts! Big sibling gifts are a great way to prepare an older sibling for the arrival of a new baby — they help the big brother or big sister to feel special, thought of, and important instead of replaced or ignored to help hinder some of that new sibling jealousy. But this gift really needs to meet certain criteria to support the whole family through this big transition. Keep reading for my tips for buying a big sibling gift from the baby and to find out which gift I went with for my 2-year-old!
A big thank you to Little Tikes for sponsoring this conversation. All opinions are mine alone.
Choose something engaging
Have you ever heard of a sibling basket? It’s something nursing moms give the older sibling only during nursing time so that they can attempt to breastfeed their baby in peace. For me, this new sibling gift should check all of those same boxes so that your child can play independently (or with other siblings) once the baby arrives rather than needing you to play with them. For this reason, I wanted a sibling gift for my 2-year-old, Nora, that would naturally allow for multiple ways to use the toy for different activities.
I chose the Little Tikes® Learn & Play™ 2-in-1 Activity Tunnel because it includes so many ways to engage with the toy — Nora can crawl through the tunnel or play with the ball drops. She can listen to silly sounds when the balls pass the arch or turn music and sounds off! It’s meant for kids ages 1-3 years old but her 4-year-old brother really loves it too, which means it’s a fantastic toy for getting the two of them to actually play nicely together — win! The tunnel has circular windows for peek-a-boo fun that Nora likes to drop balls into as well! When using her imagination, Nora can even bring other items (like little figurines) into playtime with this toy for hours of open-ended play.
Ensure it’s age-appropriate
A big sibling gift should be age-appropriate so that your kiddo doesn’t struggle with how to use it. The Little Tikes® 2-in-1 Activity Tunnel I got for Nora is just right for her age, which means it’s simple for her to use and she can create new ways to play on her own. This big sibling gift also promotes age-appropriate development through crawling, reaching, ball color recognition, hand-eye coordination, and fine motor development so I know that she’s learning through play — the best way to learn at this age.
Buy something parent-friendly
Of course, you want the gift to be something your child loves, but not at the expense of the
whole family. So if you’re not a fan of big clunky toys, don’t get them. I picked Nora’s big sibling
gift because when it’s time to clean up, the whole thing accordion folds together to tuck away in
a small space for easy storage!
Don’t want something that makes a lot of loud sounds? Skip toys like those or opt for ones like the Little Tikes® Learn & Play™ 2-in-1 Activity Tunnel that allow you to keep that feature turned off when it’s quiet time. The last thing you want is to feel flustered and frustrated with the gift you gave your child to help them ease into being a big sibling . . . or to have to resort to extra screen time which can result in a moody child. It should be a fun gift and a fun time for everyone!
What would you add to this list?