My Favorite Toys for Boys 5 & Under


Christmas is just around the corner and I know we are all starting to think about our little guys’ wish lists. Every year, I find myself wanting to pick the perfect gift. You know, something they won’t play with for just a day or pick the box to play with instead of the toy. So here are a few of my favorite toys that we have in our house.

Classic Boy Toys…

Legos. For boys age 18 months – 4 years, Duplo LEGOs are the best. My oldest played with Duplos daily, for hours. Start buying them before they can walk. Stalk Craigslist and garage sales for used sets. I found a storage bin full of LEGOs on a garage sale for $8. That was the best garage sale I have ever found. My handy husband glued some LEGO boards to an MDF board for our own portable LEGO table. We have a very large tote of Duplo LEGOs, and they are always our go-to toys to play with.

Start collecting those smaller LEGO sets at age 4. We love LEGO Creator sets because they are a 3-for-1 deal.


We have had several train sets. We all get frustrated when they don’t stay together, especially mom! My favorite sets by far are the LEGO Duplo Trains and the Fisher-Price Trackmaster Sets. We obtained some Duplo LEGO Thomas train tracks by surprise at a garage sale. I love them because you can put a LEGO block under the connecting parts to hold them securely together. Unfortunately, they don’t make the Thomas Duplo LEGO trains anymore; but you can find some good deals on eBay. I found a great deal to add to our set for my parents to give my youngest for Christmas. You can still buy a Duplo train set; it isn’t Thomas, but they are great for younger children. The Fisher-Price set is great, too, because they securely lock into place. The trains are motorized depending on what you are wanting. There are lots of different sets you can purchase. The only downside I have found is the sets work better when you follow the plan in the instructions for making a track. The pieces don’t allow much for making up your own track. No train set is perfect but these are by far my favorite.

Tractors and Equipment…

Check out the local tractor stores. My boys love tractors that have wagons and attachments. And then there are backhoes, excavators, and skid loaders. There are a few local stores that sell the Bruder brand (which is an excellent brand); and the Iowa Diecast Toy store is located on the East Side of Des Moines with a huge selection of toys.

Of course, you need a barn and some farm animals to go with your tractor! You can’t go wrong with any farm toys!


Auto B Good – A Christian-based cars shows. You can find them locally at Wellspring or Family Christian.

Superfriends – The old-school superhero show. I am really picky about what my boys watch. These superhero shows don’t have weird scary villains. They are from the 70s. Your husband probably grew up watching them.All About John Deere For Kids, Part 1

John Deere for kids – My boys love these. Ankeny library carries a few. (Photo from


Rush Hour Jr. – Great strategy game. This can be a solo game, but I find it a great game to work one-on-one with an older 4- or 5-year-old.

Sequence for Kids is a fun family game.


You can’t go wrong with Melissa & Doug Puzzles! They are great for any age. Did you know that Dollar Tree has puzzles great for older kiddos? They have 24- and 48-piece puzzles. We love them, and you can’t beat the price. They even have Disney puzzles like Cars, Princesses, Mickey Mouse. Their selection seems to turn over pretty quickly, so you always find something new.

A Few Other Ideas…

Books on CD. This set of Curious George books on CD are on my youngest’s wish list. Books on CD are so good for car trips!

We also love sticker books. They are great for times when you need active boys to sit quietly!

DIY Gift Idea…

My son would build forts all day with blankets and cushions from the couch if I let him. Well, and if little brother didn’t wreck it all the time! I found this idea on Pinterest for a fort-making kit. I put a big piece of fabric I had left over from another project, a twin flat bed sheet, rope, flashlights, and chip clips in a basket. I got all of the items from the Dollar Tree except the bed sheet I bought for $5 at Walmart. I can’t wait to give it to him!


Now it’s your turn: tell me what your favorite toys for boys are.


  1. As you know, we, too, love Legos at our house! It’s really the one boy toy that has never failed to hold my son’s interest and attention. He actually skipped right over the Duplos and starting collecting Legos at age three; and they are still the only thing on his wish list! I love it! I’m glad to know about the puzzles at Dollar Tree, and I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of the forts your boys come up with! Great ideas!

  2. Those are all really great ideas. Trains were very big last year in our house, but we have since moved on to Superheros. I love any toy that they have to use their imagination. I am actually in the process of getting rid of almost all the loud toys with batteries that we have in our house.:)


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