14 Toy Free Games with 1 Year Old

Every child loves to play. Isn't it? Try to make each game more interesting and unique.

You do not need toys all the time to entertain kids. Sometimes, playing with just people around is more fun! Following is one such list to have fun with your little one.

  1. Hide-n-Seek

Kids just love the part of finding something they thought was hidden or not present for a while.

Hide yourself in a corner of a room and call out for your child’s name and secretly keep an eye on her expressions, you would just love them. Try calling out with a funny tone and add few phrases like “Are you coming here? or Are you going to the right or Are you going to the left”, “ Oh, you are coming here”, “You are nearing and yaah you found me”. My child runs towards where I am and says “bow” “bow” when she sees me.

  1. Hide-n-Seek

Now, you can ask your child to hide in a room and tell her that you would come looking for her. They keep waiting for us to enter the room, yell a happy laugh and run towards us when we see them.

My child waits for me to come to the room where she’s standing and at the same moment I enter she runs towards me with a scream and a “bow”.

  1. Draw it

Give the child a paper and a pen and ask to scribble. Kids just love doing messy things and scribbling is one of them ;) Add some fun by saying ‘Oh, you’re drawing a line?’, ‘Is that a line or a dot?’, ‘Oh you’re doing the dot dot all around?’ and look for the kid’s expressions.

  1. What is that?

You can draw simple things and ask your child to name it. Kids feel surprised as they see colourful shapes and forms being drawn on the paper. They basically do not know from where the ink comes from and feel astonished to the fact that lines can be drawn on paper with a pen.

  1. Where is that?

Ask your kid where each object is around you. Like, ‘Where’s the fan?’ and the kid points at the fan, ‘Where’s the light?’, ‘Where’s refrigerator?’, ‘Where’s the calendar?’ etc. This one makes the kid think and the kid feels happy as he points out to each object around

  1. Question it

Give the child a large picture book and encourage her to ask you what each picture is. Watch the kid having fun as she points out to each picture and you name it. And if the kid gets a good hold of this activity, she continues asking you what every object around her is which increases her thinking capability and develops willingness to question and learn more.

  1. Catch me

You can play catches with your child right from the time she starts crawling. It keeps getting more interesting as she grows. You can ask her to run and you catch her or ask her to catch you as you walk away from her.

  1. Where is thumbkin?

This is a popular finger play that kids enjoy watching as well as doing it themselves.

Theres a rhythm in which you sing this and the lyrics along with actions are:

Where is thumbkin? Where is thumbkin?

(Hide hands behind back)

Here I am! Here I am!

(Show L thumb, then R thumb)

How are you today, sir?

(Wiggle L thumb)

Very well, I thank you.

(Wiggle R thumb)

Run away, run away.

(Hide LH behind back, then RH)

Repeat the same with other fingers and then the entire hand in the end.

Where is pointer?

Where is tall man?

Where is ring man?

Where is little man

Where is family?

9. Gudu Gudu Gunjam

This is a telugu rhyme in which you fold the palms and place one on top of other this way

(Picture source: Google.com)

Gudu gudu gunjem, Gunde ragam

pamula patnam padige ragam

chinnana gurram chindhulu thokke

pedhanna gurram pelliki poye

Pellikoduku gurram meenchi daam padipoyadu

And now hold the ears of the person to your left and right saying dee deee deee deee while swaying both the sides

My daughter just loves putting her little finger in my folded palms and loves the swaying part.

10. Zip zap zoom

This is an interesting game. You join your hands and sway it left to right and then do(enact) whatever is said in the rhyme

Zip zap zoom

Up together

Down together

Front together

Back together

Side together

Eat together

Sleep together

Early in the morning

Open the door

Hello mister Chimpanzeee


Now, you can repeat the same with mister doggy or mister pussy cat or whatever the kid likes. Example:

Hello mister doggy

Bow bow

Hello mister pussy cat

Meow meow

11. Ringa Ringa Roses

(Picture source: Google.com)

This is a very popular game across many places. Also, Kids love anything that moves round and round and round and round.

Hold each other’s hands and moving in a circular fashion singing out the rhyme:

Ringa ringa roses

Pocket full of posies

Asha Busha

We all fall down

And then everyone just fall down on the floor

12. Aamina Kattamina

You alternatively do a clap with your hands and give a hi five to the other person singing along the song:

(first sing in slow pace)

Aamina Kattamina

Sing a song

Ding a dong

(now repeat in fast pace)

Aamina Kattamina

Sing a song

Ding a dong

Carrom board

Barrom board

S…T….O….P( in a very slow pace)

STOP(touch baby’s nose with your pointer)

Your baby is sure to giggle.

13. Inky Pinky Ponky

My daughter loves this one, she keeps smiling as I point at her and me alternatively singing the rhyme:

Inky pinky ponky

Father had a donkey

Donkey died

Father cried

Inky pinky ponky

14. As we walk

This one was my childhood game that we used to enjoy a lot and so does my daughter these days. She keeps walking and moving around turning her body and moving around and smiling at me ultimately making me smile.

As we walk to the left and we walk to the right (walk two steps to the left and another 2 steps to the right)

as we walk, as we walk, as we walk walk walk (walk two steps to the left and another 2 steps to the right)

with a heel and a toe and a one leg turn (point your heel to the ground and then your toe to the ground and make a full round turn)

with a heel and a toe and a new friend found (point your heel to the ground and then your toe to the ground and bow down at your child)