I am planning to buy some meaningful toys (puzzles, learning toys) to my friend's daughter. She has completed 15 months. Would it be appropriate to buy Rubik's cube. I would appreciate other toy suggestions as well
At 15 months old, a rubik's cube would not be appropriate.
First, it's kind of a complex puzzle. Most adults can't solve it. A 15 month old is going to see it as a brightly colored cube and nothing more. She will get entertainment value out of it by probably trying throw it or eat it (the stickers aren't good to eat and the individual block pieces are choking hazards). She won't even understand the goal of a rubik's cube, much less be interested in accomplishing it.
Second, most rubik's cubes I've seen are small enough the fit comfortably in an adult's hand. Being so small, she won't have the muscle control to really handle it properly. She won't be able to precisely turn the sides of the cube, much less line it up to be able to turn another side.
Kids at that age generally need bigger toys that require less fine motor skills. Go google toddler toys. That should give you a better idea what to look for.
I would not recommend this as a toy, but for a different reason.
As a brightly colored geometric shape a Rubik's cube would probably be appealing to small children, and at that age they will likely try to put it in their mouths.
Many cubes can be dismantled into separate pieces, which could be small enough to be swallowed. Also, some cubes use colored stickers for the faces which can come off and also be swallowed. That is a strong reason to avoid these as toys in my opinion.
There are huge soft 2x2 rubik's cubes for toddlers. Like this one: Jumbo 12157 - Rubik's Baby - My first Cube, Kleinkindspielzeug They are soft and not easily breakable.
There is a youtuber called "redkb" who gave one these as a present to his nephew if I remember correctly for his 2nd birthday. So maybe that could be an alternative for you?
No, at 15 months this doesn't make sense.
I'd recommend a book with little flaps that show pictures underneath. These are fun for kids that age. Pick a book that shows colors, numbers, animals, etc.
Activity books that ask the kid to find objects in the picture are also appropriate. That way parents can say "where is the horse?" and kids learn the words and going from language to picture.
I agree with Becuzz. The child at 15 months will simply ignore the toy. If you think it encourages intelligence, you'd be incorrect. It seems counter-intuitive perhaps, but truly it makes sense.
Accomplishment makes learning fun and is encouraging. There are hundreds of great learning toys available. Bright colours, safe-size pieces and basic lessons are the way to go. Manipulation, colour/shape matching, shapes into holes, patterning, sorting... all these activities are appropriate.
I would recommend a Rubik's Cube for a 15 month old if, and only if, the parent (or nanny or other constant companion) is able to easily solve the cube already.
This is a slightly odd answer, but I do have some experience: I can solve a Rubik's cube in under two minutes every time (under a minute if I hurry) and my three-year-old son has enjoyed playing with my Rubik's cube for the last year and a half. He doesn't play with it very often, as he has other toys that are of greater interest to him personally—but he enjoys scrambling it (and has for many many months).
Also, if I do one or two quarter turns away from the solved state and hand the cube to him, he can (if he feels like it) reverse the turns to solve the cube.
So for most 15-month-old kids, no, this would not be an appropriate gift. However, there are exceptions to that.
As for other toys, personally, I would go with almost anything from Melissa and Doug, but probably the wooden block set to start with. The set is marked ages 3+, but younger kids (yes, even down to 15 months) will enjoy picking up the smaller blocks and learning to grip (developing dexterity), and these blocks are durable and will last for years and years and years. (Actually I expect they'll last for generations, if you keep them in the family that long.)
My two boys, 8 and 10, just received Rubiks Cubes for Christmas. They're both above average IQ ("Gifted"), but they've also quickly become frustrated with the puzzles and given up on them.
These really are not age-appropriate for young children, certainly not for a toddler of 15 months. There are plenty of meaningful puzzle toys available for younger ones, like shape and colour matching puzzles, which would be much more developmentally appropriate for a young one.
Consider the stickers that are on them, or the paint. Maybe they don't have these stickers anymore (my old one has them) but if swallowed that wouldn't be good.
Just because something seems safe doesn't necessarily mean it is.
No, a Rubik's cube is not appropriate for such a young child.
Obviously, they wouldn't understand what the puzzle is and what the goal is, but that wouldn't matter if they could treat it as just a brightly coloured moving cube. However, they can't treat it as just a brightly coloured moving cube. Rubik's cubes actually have a pretty limited range of movement. The only thing you can do to one is to rotate one of the faces 90°, to make it look like a cube again. If you've partially rotated a face, the only thing you can do is either fix that face or rotate the opposite one. At fifteen months, a child can't even figure out that the square block doesn't fit through the round hole; they're not gonna figure out that the brightly coloured moving cube requires you to rotate faces by 90° at a time.
Add to that the fact that new cubes are quite stiff and are a good deal larger than a toddler's hands and I'd question whether a toddler would be able to manipulate the cube at all. Net result: it's not a brightly coloured moving cube; it's just a brightly coloured cube.
And then we get the safety problems that have been covered in plenty of other answers: peeling stickers and the cube coming apart. If all you wanted to give the child was a brightly coloured cube, you could give them one made of a single piece of plastic that isn't going to come apart. The manufacturer says that the cube is suitable for children of age 8 years and up. Partly, that's because they think that younger children won't be interested in or understand the toy but, partly, it's because it's not built in a way that's safe for much younger children.
Rubik 3x3 failed my 5 year-old miserably; he is simply not interested. But 2x2 is more appropriate for him. I bet some other kids can do 3x3 at this age. A 15-month old will most probably have difficulty twisting/rotating the cube pieces. My kids can barely tear candy wrappers at 3 year old.
From my personal experience I started to be interested about puzzle and game like Rubik's Cube around 8 years old.
I found an interesting article that may help you in your research and explain what kind of games a Children Between 12 to 18 month can be interested in :
I don't think a Rubik's cube is an appropriate gift for a 15-month old child. However, I think you could give it to the child's parents, and tell them, "Let her play with it when you think she is old enough."
That might be age 3, that might be age 6, that might be age 9. It really depends on when the child will take an interest in that sort of thing, and the parents are the best ones to make that judgement call.
You don't want to give the child too many things that will be tucked away for months or years (that becomes a storage hassle), but, unless the family lives in a small apartment, I don't think there's anything wrong with a few things being tucked away in a closet for later use.
Insofar as other meaningful learning tools go, a globe might be a good suggestion. It's not a toy per se, but I've seen several young children take an interest in geography at an early age.
However, if you're looking for an age-appropriate toy that the child will enjoy now, consider something more along the lines of a shape ball:
No, 15 months too young. I'll say above 3 years for the 2x2.
My son start playing the 2x2, and he is 4 years old. He was able to solve it in two days. There also a easier versions that are only two sided. The rest of the sides are same colors. I think that it is a good gift for a little child but not that young.
This is completely age appropriate. Toddlers love blocks, toddlers love colors, and toddlers love moving things. Bing bing bing.
Even better toddler's parents hardly ever get a toy that they may play with.
What all of the answers on here are missing is that a toddler isn't going to understand what should be done with a Rubik's cube. They don't understand that they need to solve it. It is just a group of blocks that don't fall apart... Until the toddler figure out how to tear the thing apart and figures out the easiest way to solve a Rubik's cube.
(My opinion is biased as I got one for my second birthday and have pictures from 80s of me tugging it around from ages 2-6 and solving it at 4.)
I don't belive in "age-appropriateness" as a parent. I believe what I see and if I see my child can handle something then I let him. A Rubik's cube is a colorful cube. At 15 months old the child might not be able to solve a Rubik's cube, but that doesn't mean it won't be a fun toy. I would definitely go with it and not mind what others think about it being appropriate.
My thinking is that the child will gradually discover how the cube works, how to rotate sides, how to take it apart and put it back together, etc. In time it will discover all on its own how to solve it. It's amazing what children learn when you give them free, unstructured play time.