It's that time of year when gift guides are roaming the internet and Facebook feeds. So, I have gathered my favorite ideas to pass along. These are all great for preschoolers but will also hopefully give you creative gift ideas for all ages.
Experiences and Time
Giving the gift of time is my favorite. My first reason for this being people tend to remember experiences over things. The other reason I love this one is it doesn't fill anyone’s home with stuff. Time experiences to give would be tickets to events, theater or museum, memberships to area attractions, or a meal out.
Many great gifts come in subscription form from magazines (there are many for preschool age) to monthly treat packages. NatureBox is a company that sends monthly healthy snacks, Kiwi Crate sends projects and crafts, and Little Passports sends global learning activities.
From traditional wood unit blocks to Legos and Duplos blocks are a great toy. Other block ideas are items like pattern/tangram blocks, magnetic blocks (like Magnatile brand), and Lincoln Logs. Children practice many skills while playing with blocks like spatial, math, engineering and creativity.
Think about all the ways a child might make-believe.
Playmobil is a favorite brand of ours with many diverse themes kids will love. Not all figurines need to be fighting action figures. There are also many gender neutral dollhouse figures and sets (like those from Hape brand) and stuffed animals can be used for make-believe too.
Others that will add to a child’s imaginative play stash are puppets, dress-up outfits (remember, you could hit up sections at your local thrift store), and child-sized kitchen center or woodworking area.
Physical Activity Toys
Classics like bikes (look into balance bikes for kids 18 months and older), balls, scooters, t-ball stands, soccer goals are all fabulous toys to take life outdoors and make wonderful gifts. Just don’t forget the helmet with a riding toy purchase! Safety first!
Look for board and card games age-appropriate for your child. Peaceable Kingdom has many cooperative and simple games for early learners that parents will enjoy too. Puzzles are another activity that are educational and fun for kids.
Books and Music
Books make great gifts! Holidays and birthdays are a nice time to spend a little extra and invest in hardback picture books. Check out the American Library Association's list for notable books of the year HERE.
Consider giving music for your children to listen to and/or musical instruments for them to play. The blog Let's Play Kid's Music has a great list HERE.
Science makes great gifts. Hit up an educational toy store for fun science kits and check out Insect Lore online for bug kits and supplies (although you will likely want to wait for spring or summer to have bugs delivered).
Always searching for supplies when your child feels like painting, coloring, gluing? Make a box full of supplies into a gift that can be pulled out quickly when requested. Include an assortment of these items: crayons, markers, paint, paintbrushes, paper, glue, tape, 3-D items (pompoms, pipe cleaners, cotton balls, popsicle sticks).
You would be amazed how excited kids will get about useful items. Use gift-giving times to give a cute umbrella or pair of rain boots, real kid-sized tool set, a fun lunchbox with and water bottle, or a backpack or suitcase. Think about what your child needs and a fun way to give the item and make him/her excited about it.
Do you plan to give any items like the above this year? Who are the recipients?
Any ideas of your own to add to the list?