Playpens are great, especially for the baby that is not yet crawling or walking. Playpens may be made of soft mesh, plastic or wood. Playpens are wonderful for providing your baby a safe place to play or lay for short periods of time. Keep the play pen within your sight and be sure baby still knows your are near.
Playyards are usually slightly bigger then typical playpens. Playyards are often plastic gates that are attached or foam blocks that are arranged to form a large play area. These provide for more movement but it is important to realize that the foam style blocks/walls will not ensure your child will not climb over. The foam style blocks are more for making a play area and not for keeping a toddler or child in one spot.
When choosing a playpen you can select from wood, soft mesh and plastic. Play yardsIf you are buying a wooden playpen be sure that the slats are not more than 2 3/8 inches apart.