Our little V is turning 2 this month! In celebration, I’m pulling together a series of posts with all our favorite toys and brands.
First up, my favorite eco-friendly toddler musical instrument companies, perfect for empowering your child to experiment and make their own music!
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Husband and I have both always been very musical, so not only did we want to expose V to music for the scientific reasons music is good for young children, but we also wanted to pass down our musical passion and see what her personal preferences were. As we are trying to get toxins out of our home and live a more natural life, toys that have little to no plastic in them and that are made with quality materials is really important to us as well. I’ve compiled a list of our four favorite companies for toddler musical instruments, toys your child can experience lots of free play experimenting with.
Remo is one of the world’s leading drum head companies. We were introduced to them in our Music Together class (which I cannot recommend highly enough). Every class there would be a song or two where the teacher brought out the big box of instruments for the children to choose from and play along with the music however they wished. Most of the drums in the box were from Remo and for Christmas last year we bought V the bongos and floor tom. Their gathering drum was always a huge hit in class, with 2-4 kids squeezing around it to play. And I’m a sucker for a conga drum so this one is on our wish list. They have two children’s lines, Rhythm Club® and Kids Percussion®, made with different quality drum heads (and thus at different price points). They are really great quality and are drummer approved.
PlanToys is another popular green/wooden toy company. I’m a really big fan of their products and V has several of their play kitchen items already. They are a strong force in the sustainable production movement and use organic rubber wood and water-based paints in most of their toys. While they have a lot of play house-type toys, they also have a nice line of toddler musical instruments. V is getting their banjo for Christmas this year. We recently got their xylophone from a friend and really like it. It is much quieter than the metal/plastic popular version (bonus!). Their wood drum is great for smaller toddlers and I love that they can experiment with hitting it in different places to make different sounds. Their clatter music toy is a cross between several auxiliary percussion instruments and gives children lots of experimenting opportunities.
Hape is a pretty popular and easy-to-find wood toy company. I love that they focus on open-ended toys that allow for children to use their imaginations and handle them in multiple ways. Their bright colors are really attractive and distinctive. They use solid wood on most toys and always child-safe, non-toxic paints. My parents got V Hape’s rhythm instrument set for some holiday last year and we’ve all enjoyed it. I love that they are pretty small so she can easily manipulate them but they are still fully functioning instruments. I’ve heard nothing but good things about their slide out tap bench/xylophone combo toy and almost got that for V instead of her floor tom, but her dad’s a drummer. Their little drummer and Mr. Tambourine are great non-plastic alternatives to the classic musical toys, a perfect toddler musical instrument.
Green Tones is one of the oldest musical instrument companies around and they also focus on making instruments that are geared toward young children and their natural, innate musical interest. They also source eco-friendly, sustainably produced woods and only use materials that are safe for children – even their packaging is sustainably made. And they give 1% of their profits to groups focusing on environmental care. Plus, in my opinion, Green Tones takes the cake for the most creative and fun instruments. Seriously, have you seen their Papa Bear Glockenspiel? Glockenspiel? That may be my new favorite word. (Bonus – They have a Mama Bear Drum, too!) Their beginner drum set is at the top of V’s Christmas wish list and I think is the perfect next step for a budding percussionist. Their toddler instrument set is a great collection of easy to manipulate toys that make different sounds and are a great starter set to have around the house. Temple wood blocks are a classic and allow for a number of different sounds and timbres.
There you have it! My favorite 4 eco-friendly brands for toddler musical instruments. Any you’d add to the list? What are your favorite toddler musical instruments?