For Parents

For Parents

Stacking Ball Ramp

** Our research group has not accepted any monetary incentives for our recommendations

This is a classic go-to toy for children playing at simple and combination levels.  It can serve as an “entry level” toy for children who are just becoming interested in toys.  Check out our general recommendations about play levels and play guidelines to help get your started.  Play is a great time to model new language!  Some action words to use while playing are in parentheses.

For children with autism, this toy offers both sensory components (spinning, dropping, rattling) and combination elements (stacking, dropping in), which can help this toy serve as a bridge from repetitive and sensory play to more functional toy play.  The sensory components can help draw interest in the toys and maintain engagement, and then you can support your child in participating in dropping and stacking.

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  • Drop balls down the ramp.  The youngest of players may enjoy simply watching you drop the balls.  You can also help your child play with this toy by helping him drop the balls down the ramp with hand over hand assistance. (Ball. It’s going down.)
  • Shake the balls like a rattle. (We’re shaking the balls.)


  • Stack the pieces into a tower with your child. (The piece is on. It’s a tower.)
  • Pull the tower apart piece by piece. (You pulled the piece. It came off.) 
  • Combine stacking and dropping into a two-step game.  Stack the pieces into a tower and then drop the balls down.  After you have dropped all the balls, pull the pieces apart and then you can build them again!
  • Bring over additional containers to drop the balls into, shake, and dump out (shoe box, salad spinner, dump truck). (They’re in the truck. They came out.)
  • Although a bit cumbersome, some matchbox cars can manage to fit through the holes and roll down the ramp.
  • For a bit more advanced play, your child may enjoy building a corral or wall out of blocks to keep the balls in the area after they come down the ramp.