7 Easy Duplo Ideas And Inspiration For Toddlers

7 Easy Duplo Ideas and Inspiration for Toddlers

duplo ideas for toddlers

LEGO Duplo is the most common household toy for toddlers and preschoolers, but after a while you may be looking for Duplo ideas and wondering what else can be done with these Lego blocks?

Turns out, these multi-coloured pieces are perfect for early years Montessori learning, sensory play, and can even lend itself to some quality parent-child game time.

So without further ado, here are some Duplo ideas to get you inspired at playtime!

1. Re-Create Game

What you need:

  • 2 identical sets of 5-10 Duplo pieces (total 10-20)
  • A large bowl, or small box

The aim of the game is for your child to re-create whatever you create – and there are several variations of this game you can play using LEGO Duplo.

First, prepare two sets of the exact same pieces. Then, using one set, build a simple structure that is easy enough for toddlers to remember.

Give your child a few minutes to observe and remember it, then cover the structure and challenge him to rebuild it using the second set of pieces.

duplo memory game player 1
duplo memory game player 2

Credit: The LEGO Family

As a variation (and an easier version), instead of building a structure, you simply arrange the pieces into a pattern instead, for instance red, blue, green, yellow.

And the challenge for the toddler is to replicate the pattern from memory using the second set of pieces.

2. Complete The Symmetry

What you need:

  • 2 identical sets of Duplo pieces, as many as you need
  • 1 large base plate
  • Timer (optional)

For this game, the bigger your base plate, the more intricate designs you can do.

Our large sized 26 x 26 cm base plate is perfect for this activity, get it free with every set of our Candy Marble Run building blocks.

duplo game symmetry challenge half a tree
duplo game symmetry challenge full tree

The goal of the game is simple – you create one half of a picture, and your child has to complete the other half. It’s exciting for them when they realise what the entire picture is going to be!

Advanced version

  • Add a timer and see how fast they can complete the picture
  • Instead of half symmetry, create a quarter symmetry, so they have to replicate it three times to form a complete picture

3. Memory Game

What you need:

  • 2 identical sets of 8 Duplo pieces (total 16)
  • 16 paper cups
memory matching game pieces
memory matching game pieces covered

Credit: The LEGO Family

The classic match-the-pair memory game in Duplo form! For this you’ll need an assortment ofpieces, mix in some figurines and flowers if you have any.

4. Maze Marble Run

What you need:

(If you want to use your own Duplo pieces for this, you just need to make sure you have a large enough base plate. You also want to make sure you have narrow 2×1 blocks to form the outer walls, and a marble.)

This simple game is engaging for toddlers because it requires them to have steady hands and concentration. They hold the base plate and try to roll the marble from the starting entry to the exit gap.

Advanced version

To make the game more challenging for preschoolers, you can create multiple exits and assign points to each other – the more difficult the exit, the more points they get.

Then set a timer and see how many points they can score within five minutes. If the marble falls off the plate, they have to restart.

5. Shadow Tracing

What you need:

  • Figurines
  • Pieces of paper
  • Crayon or marker
  • Table lamp

For this activity, you need to be in a relatively dark room with a one strong source of light to create shadows.

If you don’t have any Duplo figurines, you can use normal pieces to build different structures for your child to trace.

shadow tracing duplo figurine cow
shadow tracing duplo figurine rabbit

Credit: The LEGO Family

Trace the shadows on separate pieces of paper. After she’s done tracing, you can extend the activity by shuffling the papers and letting her match the shadow to the correct figurine.

Advanced version

Explore the relationship between light and shadow by adjusting the light source – nearer and further – to create different sized shadows for the same figurine.

You can also exlore different angles of light and see what effect they have on the shadows.

6. Washing Up – Sensory Play

What you need:

  • Large bowl
  • Water
  • Bubbles/soap (optional)
  • Cloth
  • Duplo pieces
washing duplo pieces in bowl with cloth

Alright so technically this is just getting them to play with water, and you can do this activity with any plastic toys, not just Duplo.

But the great thing about using Duplo for this is that it adds a sensory element to it, which is particularly engaging for younger toddlers.

It’s also a good way to introduce them to chores and the concept of cleaning and hygiene.

7. Colour Sorting

What you need:

  • Multiple Duplo blocks
  • Coloured paper, cups, or bowls
  • Tongs (optional)
duplo colour sorting game for toddlers

Colour sorting is a very common Montessori activity for toddlers and teaches them the basics of identifying patterns, similarities and differences.

Getting little ones to use tongs to pick up the pieces also helps them practise their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.

This activity can easily be done with coloured paper, or if you have spare paper cups, you can paint those into single colours.

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