There are a few ways to witness pure toddler joy in action: You can put your kid in an outdoor swing and let them soar through the air and kick their pudgy little legs around. You can let them, oh, say, play with butter. And thanks to the latest brilliant trend in sensory play, you can also let them roll around in a pit full of plastic balls. In a world crowded with STEM toys and others that make big claims about development, the best baby ball pits are are a refreshingly simple way for kids to experience what play really means: letting go and having fun.
Before you invest in a baby ball pit, a few things to keep in mind: Make sure your child can sit up on her own before using it. Unless you have tons of floor space, you’ll want a ball pit that folds up and keeps the balls contained. And you want balls you can clean. The reason for that shouldn’t need any further explanation.
The gold standard of miniature ball pits: This one is suitable for babies 9 months and older. It's a zippered turtle that houses 60 plastic balls that are multi-colored. The bottom is non-skid. And this thing zips up when your kid is done playing and becomes a pillow.
Part play mat, part baby ball pit, this one is great for parents seeking an all-purpose activity gym. It comes with 40 multicolored balls you store in the turtles head. And when your toddler is ready to play, you just pop up the mesh sides and let 'em rip.
What do kids love more than plastic balls? Trains. So behold this magical combination for kids 2 and up. It's an inflatable caboose that comes with 25 plastic balls. The horn makes a sound when kids squeeze it.
The ball pit for connoisseurs, this one is worthy of a spot in your living room. The exterior is made of plant-based foam, and it comes with 250 white and grey non-toxic LDPE balls. The aesthetic is clean, modern, and just very cool.
The brand known for its intricate play tents delivers again, this time with this sweet baby ball pit. The exterior is made from heavyweight heathered cotton jersey; it takes 300 balls to fill it, and — downside — the balls are, in fact, sold separately and cost extra. However, if aesthetics are important — you may be looking at this thing a lot — this one is very easy on the eyes.
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