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An Age-Based Guide to Open Ended Play

By Caitlin Van Wyk 

June 4, 2022

Open-ended play ignites the imagination and immerses your child in a world full of wonder and curiosity.

Watching your child develop and explore is amazing. They are naturally curious about who they are and how they fit into the world around them. Having the right toys for nurturing play will unlock a whole world of possibilities for your child. So let’s dive into an age-based guide to open-ended play for your child.

What is Open-Ended Play?

Open-ended play is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child. Spending time immersed in an imaginative world is how children learn and develop. Open-ended play is self-directed, meaning your child takes the lead without any direction from you. It is a way of playing that has many possible scenarios without a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way of doing it. It is playing for the sake of play, without an end goal in mind.

Why is Open-Ended Play Important?

Open-ended play is vital for social and cognitive development. It allows your child to be independent and gives them autonomy. Toys that will enable your child to dive deep into an imaginary scenario teach them to be flexible, resilient, and creative. Through play, they can explore the world around them and make sense of their place in it.

Benefits of Open-Ended Play

  • Develops problem-solving abilities
  • Builds confidence
  • Teaches patience
  • Encourages out-the-box thinking
  • Teaches social skills

Adora’s Toys for Open-Ended Play

Adora toys are designed for nurturing play and giving your child the space to learn and grow. Dolls are perfect for encouraging open-ended play, and the Adora dolls are no exception.  

Toys for 1+ Year Olds

Toddlers use dolls in open-ended play to help them understand the world and make sense of social situations. The Adora BathTime BabyTot Dragon is perfectly sized for imaginative fun during bathtime. The adorable dragon-themed hoodie bathrobe will have your toddler going on mythical adventures as they lose themselves in a new world.

Shop Adora's Toys for Ages 1+

Toys for 3+ Year Olds

As children get older, their imaginations develop, sparking creativity and curiosity. That curiosity comes with big feelings as they begin to assert their independence. These emotions can be challenging, particularly if you are about to bring home a new baby. The Adora Adoption Baby is a great option for open-ended play that will help your toddler work through their feelings about a new sibling and help them feel included in the process.

Shop Adora's Toys for Ages 3+

Toys for 6+ Year Olds

Adora dolls and the Adora Baby Doll Stroller are the perfect outdoor toys to lure your older child away from a screen. Open-ended play is just as important for school-aged children, and a doll picnic in the park might be just what they need to process the social situations they find themselves in. The interactive stroller will have your child outside and immersed in the wonderful world of imaginative play for hours.

Shop Adora's Toys for Ages 6+

Adora and Open-Ended Play

Dolls are the perfect option for interactive and imaginative play, so why not look through our Adora dolls and find the right one for your child.

Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set

Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set

$29.99
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set

Adora Snuggle & Glow Dinosaur Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set

$29.99
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set

Adora Snuggle & Glow Unicorn Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set

$29.99
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set
Adora Snuggle & Glow Llama Bundle - 2-piece plush toy set

Adora Snuggle & Glow Sloth Bedtime Transition Kit - 2-piece set

$29.99
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches
Adora Jelly Glow-in-the-Dark Squishy Toys 3 piece set, 6 inches

Adora Glow Jelly Plush Toy Bundle, 3-Piece Set

$25.99