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What to buy for the kid who doesn't play with toys...

(25 Posts)
Diddlydokey Thu 19-Nov-15 09:12:10

We have tried for most of his life and failed to find anything that he will play with independently. He mainly likes pretending to be an animal/the daddy/ baby/ Robot etc. We bake together and chase balloons but what do you buy a kid like this?

Nothing seems to interest him beyond us & the TV!

Diddlydokey Thu 19-Nov-15 09:12:57

Sorry just to add he's 3 years old.

LifeIsChaos Thu 19-Nov-15 09:23:40

Games for you to play together? Orchard have a good selection for his age.

Does he like outdoor toys? Wheelbarrow etc for helping in the garden.

His own baking set.

Duplo? My ds doesn't really play with figures etc but will build models.

BrieAndChilli Thu 19-Nov-15 09:24:43

Lots of dressing up stuff?

Ds1 never played with toys but he learto read age 3 and from then on that's all he would do (as well as anything electronic - computer, iPad, Xbox etc) I would buy him loads of toys so e had the same amount of stuff as his brother and sister but he never played with it, was a waste of money so now he gets books and video games! Last year for his birthday and xmas (birthday a couple of days before xmas) he got over 50 (factual) books! But he loves them and reads them over and over.

RitaConnors Thu 19-Nov-15 09:43:30

My oldest never played with toys. After a few years of buying playmobil castles and the like, we set up a craft area for her. We filled a bookshelf with pencils, paints, staplers, stamps, egg boxes etc. She loved it and got years of use out of it.

RitaConnors Thu 19-Nov-15 09:45:55

My oldest never played with toys. After a few years of buying playmobil castles and the like, we set up a craft area for her. We filled a bookshelf with pencils, paints, staplers, stamps, egg boxes etc. She loved it and got years of use out of it.

Although she never played imaginatively one her own, she will shoot basketball hoops or ride her bike on her own for ages. And read.

Stirling84 Thu 19-Nov-15 09:48:55

Room re-fit to his choice of imaginative play? (Eg put turrets around his bed or paint a mural)

florentina1 Thu 19-Nov-15 09:54:34

Maybe an indoor tent or a plastic playhouse, where he can do his pretend games. A child's beam bag chair or big floor cushion.

Thumbcat Thu 19-Nov-15 09:55:40

A bubble machine so he can chase bubbles? DS would never play independently so I tried to choose things that I wouldn't mind playing with him - board games, playdough sets, marble run.

Wolfie2 Thu 19-Nov-15 09:56:48

What happens if you have a telly free week? What does he gravitate towards?

Wolfie2 Thu 19-Nov-15 09:57:24

Scooter balance bike trampoline if he's a couch potato

RatOnnaStick Thu 19-Nov-15 09:57:31

A bloody great dressing-up box filled with props and costumes?

SitsOnFence Thu 19-Nov-15 10:10:09

Will he play with 'construction' type toys? I ask because it sounds like he prefers completely open-ended play. Some ideas for that kind of play:
Kid-K'nex I think you can probably get cheaper sets
Mobilo
Wonderworld wooden ball run Also search 'Trix Tracks' on Amazon as the smaller sets are frequently discounted down to around £10
Pl-ug den building kit the smallest one is only £12.50

He might also enjoy mini 'real world' stuff for his make believe like:
IKEA cookware, plates etc
Trunk/chest like this or cardboard suitcases like these
Realistic animal plush toys or baby dolls to be his pets/babies

He may also enjoy:
Disco light
Musical instruments

These are all things that my toy-averse DS has had and loved. Let me know if I'm on the right track and I'll see if I can remember other things that have been hits.

Diddlydokey Thu 19-Nov-15 10:15:38

He's not a couch potato (are any 3 year olds) and has all the outdoors stuff as he has a summer birthday. It's more stuff for this time of year really when you're a bit stuck inside.

He doesn't gravitate to any activity, he just dishes out a role - mummy you're a purple turtle/yellow dragon etc and then you play along. This is all fine but it would be great to find something that he could do on his own!!

The crafts sound quite a good idea. I've been wary of paints because of the mess but he's a bit better now. I might try the finger paints.

Bubble machine and marble run also sound good.

Diddlydokey Thu 19-Nov-15 10:17:08

sits that's really helpful. Glad to know he's not the only one!

Holstein Thu 19-Nov-15 10:19:37

Play kitchen?- the Ikea one is lovely.

macnab Thu 19-Nov-15 10:21:44

Our DS got this as a gift when he was 3. He loved it. Our DD is 2 years younger and when she got to around 3 she started playing with it and loved it even more than DS did! It turns out to have been one of the best gifts we ever got in the house, hours of fun for them and its educational too! (and not messy - bonus!)

starlight2007 Thu 19-Nov-15 10:26:10

I would take him to somewhere like Toys r us and roam round see if anything really grabs him..
Knectic sand is a good one..

Musical instruments.

Role play like a till, kitchen..

BoxofSnails Thu 19-Nov-15 10:27:45

Books
Easel
He is definitely the age to start being able to play games with you, orchard etc are good, also ELC have a whole load half price atm
You can get big tubs of crafty bits if that's better than sets from eg argos, etc, etc

Diddlydokey Thu 19-Nov-15 10:33:02

Always get a few books and he has an Easel and play kitchen and a tent which he ignores grin

He will play with them if we do, but never picks them or plays on his own. I'm probably being unrealistic but my nieces & nephews always go straight for the toys when they come to play whereas he just follows us around!

SitsOnFence Thu 19-Nov-15 10:33:36

If he's like my DS Diddly, it will get easier as he gets older. DS is 7 now and happy with a roll of masking tape, pens, paper and the contents of the recycling bin!

He also loves cheap fleecy blankets (IKEA are great for these, or Dunelm Mill) which are used for dens, makeshift beds, or just snuggled up under. A few other things he has enjoyed over the years:
Light up/glowing pillows like this one
Picnic set
Bucket stilts (we got ours from Poundland and they have lasted years!)

We have also enjoyed the following toys from our local toy library, not sure if they'd stand the test of time though as we only ever had them for 3 weeks at a stretch:
Gonge river stones
Aquaplay canal set
A DIY balance beam sort of set, not this one but similar
A wobble deck similar to this one
Play parachute (used more as a den/sail for ship/ball gown, but enjoyed nonetheless and quite cheap to buy

FixItUpChappie Fri 20-Nov-15 04:28:26

-costumes
-Doctor kit
-tool box
-wallet full of play money and old credit cards
-play kitchen/play bake set

FixItUpChappie Fri 20-Nov-15 04:30:51

also tea set - my boys always like that pretend play aspect too - tea set was a big hit (especially if you get one that you can really put juice in)

JoyceDivision Fri 20-Nov-15 05:29:17

have you googled thebig cardboard rockets etc that they cann stand in/ dcs had one and they loved it!

Kittymum03 Fri 20-Nov-15 05:47:42

SitsOn. I'm going to steal your suggestion of suitcases as it's brilliant for my son! He loves nothing more than packing things in bags,boxes,tubs,and those are so lovely looking,so Thanks!

OP,card games? I used to love sitting by myself sorting through cards,not playing them how they 'should' be played,just making them into little families,or colours,or trying to make card houses.

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