Last updated: 20th November 2017

Christmas - that time of year when trees are decked out with lights and decor, the fresh smell of pine, surrounded by family and friends. It’s the same every year all over the world; first thing in the morning, children rush down excitedly to check and see what presents they got, some happy with their gifts and others not so much.

Let’s be real here, choosing the perfect gift every year and trying your best to outdo last year’s present is always going to be hard. You can easily go with the choice of selecting the newest top of the line technology, but sometimes that may not be in your budget, or your child may already have it.

3 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Gifts

Tip 1: Longevity and Reusability

You’re going to want to get a gift that can be used more than once. We’ve all witnessed it before - you buy a child a toy and after the excitement wears down, the toy gets shoved into the back of their closet, never to be seen again.

Gifts should be used more than just a handful of times, so avoid buying toys that only have one function or can’t be used creatively. Kids have a wild imagination, but there’s only so many things you can do with a ball or frisbee.

Think to yourself what other uses that toy can have; if it doesn’t have other applications, then it’s good to consider buying a gift that includes accessories, therefore adding to the original gift.

What makes dolls so amusing over an extended period? It’s because you can add on and buy more accessories so that the original toy can be used in a new way. You also have the option to change up their hair, put them in a car, etc.

Tip 2: Know Their Preferences

Everyone has different preferences when it comes to toys. Avoid making the mistake of buying gifts based off of assumptions of what you think they will like, versus what they actually like. You don’t have to outright ask them what they want for Christmas, but at least get a good idea of the kinds of gifts they are expecting.

Some children are drawn more to hands-on toys, while some others prefer books or crafts. Don’t just assume that your son or daughter wants a toy only because it’s advertised and geared towards a specific gender. For example, if your daughter happens to be a tomboy, try buying her something that fits her interests instead of just buying her dolls or other toys geared towards girls.

Tip 3: Set a Budget

Yes, I know, budgeting for Christmas seems almost impossible. We’d recommend setting a price range before going in to buy any gifts. You may think to yourself that getting your Christmas shopping done early can help you in the long run, but sometimes that means you’ll be missing out on some of the great bundles and deals businesses offer during the holiday seasons. Be a smarter shopper and take advantage of those coupons, bundles and sales.

Top Toys for Gift

Even after considering the above, you may feel lost on what to get this Christmas to wow your kids. Continue reading as we will provide you with some of the best gift ideas guaranteed to keep your kids entertained and happy.

Action Figures and Models

Action figures make a great Christmas gift, especially if your child or teenager is into collectables. In the early 1960’s, there was a release of the G.I. Joe line of action figures and since then, action figures have grown to be more intricate and function both as a toy and a centrepiece that can be put on display in their room.

The only troubling part with action figures is finding one suited to your son or daughter’s interests. Find out their favorite movies, TV shows and video games to get an idea which figures to buy. If you can’t think of one they might like, here are some action figures you can buy this winter:

Transformer Action Figure

Based off of the hit animated TV show, Transformer figures are an excellent pick for action-packed fun. These figures double as cars and transformers, quickly switching between the two.

Your child can use it to act out scenes from the movies or use their imagination to think up new scenarios. The critical ability to be able to change the transformers into cars in a matter of seconds helps give your child more options while they play.

Marvel or DC Superhero Figures

If you’re buying a figure for an adolescent, then we would highly consider looking into collectable action figures. Marvel and DC are big name comic book companies with a wide variety of superheroes. Find out your child’s favorite hero and you’ll be good to go. If your child happens to be collecting figures, then we’d also suggest getting stands and display cases for an extra added touch.

Model Figures

Action figures can be a great pick, but some children want to do more hands-on crafts instead. A great option that mixes both figures and action are model kits. These kits allow your child to build models of spaceships, stages and characters, as well. Model kits are often based on popular movie genres, such as the death star from Star Wars or characters from Minecraft.

Lego Models

Lego is going to be our top pick when it comes to choosing a model kit. If your child happens to get tired of whatever they are building, they can still use the rest of the pieces to create other structures.

Lego’s model kits are often based off of popular TV shows, movies and video games and these kits can be great for older and younger kids, alike. Model kits offer kids a chance to have a sense of accomplishment when they display the product in their room after they are done building it.

Anime Models

I’m sure by now that most parents are aware of the Japanese animation style called anime. Japan makes a lot of different types of models based off of popular anime shows and characters. These models may be trickier to get your hands on, though, as they will have to be shipped overseas, so make sure to plan accordingly for the gifts to arrive in time for Christmas.

One of the most popular models is the anime series called “Gundam.” These models are great for older kids because they are challenging to build and they can range from exact replicas of these giant mecha machines to customizable and printable versions.

Arts and Craft Gifts

Buying your child arts and crafts gifts are a safe way to go because they require minimal knowledge and will give your child some time to relax and focus on one project.

Crafting kits can range from beginner to expert, so make sure you consider your child’s artistic knowledge and ability before choosing a kit. If your child makes a mess, we recommend that you avoid paints or other substances that can stain other surfaces, as I’m sure as a parent you won’t be wanting to clean up any extra messes.

Kits make a great gift because they come with everything you need, including any accessories or tools. There are a few different kinds of kits that are popular right now:

Slime Time Kit by Millard

A very popular trend that you most likely have heard of is slime. There have been countless YouTube videos that demonstrate how to make slime from scratch, but if you don’t get the correct measurements, you may not be able to create slime.

The slime kit is designed specifically for children to use and includes non-toxic ingredients. These kits come with instructions on how to build different slimes and come with all the ingredients and tools your child would need to custom make their slime.

Slime can easily be stored for a few days and the ingredients are relatively cheap. In addition, you have the option to choose to purchase extras such as beads, glitter, or other objects to add into the slime so your child can add some flair.

Sewing/Knitting Kits

If your child isn’t into slime, another suggestion we have is sewing. Sewing sounds dangerous, especially at a young age, that’s why we recommend only getting these kits for children who are older. These kits are great because they include sewing needles, scissors, a thimble and other tools. If you’re worried about your child’s safety, some kits come with rounded needles and other childproof tools, therefore reducing the risk of any injuries.

Alex toys have a “My First Sewing Kit” it’s great for kids who are just beginning to learn how to sew. It provides very basic instructions on how to use all of the tools included and can become a great hobby for your child later on. The kit contains all essentials for your child to get started, including fabric, stuffing, thread, needles and much more.

Knitting can also be fun; it’s relatively inexpensive and teaches your children a good skill that can be used later in life. Your children can learn how to knit clothes, accessories and even stuffed animals. Make sure to buy a guidebook for children, though, as they explain how to knit in simpler terms.

Hobby Kits

If these above options do not interest you or give you inspiration for a perfect Christmas gift, then we highly recommend checking out a hobby store in your area. These stores have an abundance of different kinds of crafting kits for kids and the employees will be able to help select a gift based off of your child’s interests.

Dolls and Accessory Gifts

Dolls and accessories are amongst one of the most popular Christmas gifts you can give. What’s excellent about dolls compared to a decade ago is that many dolls now come with customization and extra add-ons, thus giving your child more possibilities and reduces the risk of them losing interest.

Barbie and Ken Dolls

Barbie and Ken dolls are the most classic dolls you can give your child for Christmas. Barbie has recently expanded their brand’s dolls to include a multitude of different ethnicities and cultures, giving your child plenty of options to choose from. Change Barbie into a doctor, mermaid, princess and much more. Extra accessories do tend to be slightly pricey, though, so be careful if you’re on a budget.

Baby Alive Dolls

The Baby Alive brand has dolls that are more interactive; they look and act like babies and are preset to perform certain behaviours. Your child will learn to care for another by burping, feeding and nursing the baby doll. This is especially useful if your child has younger siblings or is expecting a new one soon. The Baby Alive dolls also come with a set of accessories and can be dressed up in different clothes.

Electronic and Musical Gifts

Electronics are the most prominent gifts that are being given every Christmas because whether your child is young or old, all enjoy interacting with new technology. There is a wide variety of different electronic devices that you can choose from, but if you have trouble deciding, here are some of our top picks:

Video Game Console

Video game consoles are the most expensive gifts you can give, but they usually are worth the investment. The whole family can use these consoles and they are great if you have more than one child - even you can use it. Make sure you research which games are available before buying a console, as not every game is available for each system.

Introduce your child to the world of retro gaming, as the plug and play systems give you the ability to play all the old arcade games right on your TV. They are very easy to use and are perfect for young and old children. You even have the option to buy added controllers and joysticks, just like the old classic games. Listed below are different systems you can get to play retro games:

Atari Flashback

The Atari Flashback is a little bit bigger than most other play and plug systems, but it includes a broader range of games - over 100 different games. Access some of your favorite retro games and even join your child and play along with them, creating a great way to bond with your child.

Pac-Man Connect

Remember the classic arcade game Pac-Man? Running from ghosts and trying to beat each level, the Pac-Man Connect is a great way to play all of your favorite Pac-Man games. It includes all of the old arcade games as well as the same graphics, design and controls.

PlayBox

The PlayBox is perfect when you want a wider variety of different retro games. Your child will have access to a wide variety of different styles of arcade-style games, making it more entertaining in the long run.

Cozmo Robot

The Cozmo Robot is controlled by connecting to an app on your phone. Through this, you are able to control and interact with the Cozmo Robot, levelling him up and getting upgrades.

Discover Activity Cube

The Activity Cube includes a cube that has 5 different sides with built-in activities that help your baby develop their motor skills. This is great for younger children as they are just starting out to learn how to speak and process. With this, they can learn basic skills like the ability to identify colors, numbers and shapes.

Video Games and Accessories

If you’ve already got a video game console, maybe your child is looking forward to a particular game that has just released. Popular titles being released this holiday season are Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, Star Wars Battlefront II and Super Mario Odyssey.

Some great accessories that can be added to these consoles are personalized cases and stickers. There are plenty of designs you can choose from online that can help customize your child’s console to be unique.

Tablets

Tablets can also be an excellent gift for Christmas. You don’t have to necessarily go and buy an expensive tablet, as there are some made specifically for kids.

Tablets make such great gifts because they offer a wide variety of applications, the ability to watch TV shows and also browse the web. In addition, you will be able to set up parental controls for your child if needed.

Electronic Books

For younger children who are just starting to learn how to read, there are electronic books that are programmed to read the words on each page. Some systems offer the ability to switch books, while others are single books.

These books include a voice over of the words on the page, music and sounds, giving your child an immersive experience while reading. Some systems come with an added stylus which the child can use to touch certain words or images to be read to them.

VTech Sort

The Vtech Sort is an electronic book that has interactive elements to help your child learn basic concepts. As your child flips through the pages, different songs, sounds and noises will be made and the story will be read along as they go. It’s a great gift to help boost your child’s learning ability at an early age.

Remote Control and Riding Gifts

Remote control systems have come a long way in the past decade. For children who spend most of their days outside instead of in the house, a remote-control device can be quite exciting. If your child would rather drive in their car, then there are miniature versions you can get that look exactly like the original. How cute would it be to see your child drive around in a fancy sports car?

Remote Control Cars

Remote control cars can be very entertaining for children, as they’ve come a long way in development over the past decade. Many remote-control cars are now designed to be precise with movements, making it easy to use on many different occasions.

Watch your kids set up tracks, obstacle courses, races and much more. A caution when choosing remote controlled cars: make sure that you look at the control console, as sometimes they may be too difficult for younger children to control.

Miniature Cars

Miniature cars are great for kids who want to drive around outside. These cars are designed to be safe for younger children and the cars usually don’t go that fast, so your kids won’t get any injuries. Choose to buy one that’s a replica of your favorite sports cars, tractor or buy one designed for kids.

Educational Toy Gifts

Christmas is a great chance to get your younger children excited about learning. It’s important to give your children chances to expose themselves to different learning opportunities so that they can become successful later in life. Usually, children will refuse to do anything educational unless they are forced, that’s why you need to present the toys as being fun, enjoyable and entertaining.

LeapFrog

LeapFrog is a great educational gift that makes learning fun for younger children. The tablet itself comes with a stylus pen and an interactive touchscreen. The LeapFrog system will teach your child how to correctly write the alphabet and numbers.

On the touchscreen, the child is given an outline of letters and numbers and all they have to do is simply trace the outline - this can help improve their muscle memory and motor skills.

Scientific Explorer Mind Blowing Science Kit

Older children may be harder to trick into using educational gifts, that’s why the Scientific Explorer kit is an excellent choice. Each kit will come with instructions on how to produce an experiment, thus teaching your child valuable skills through hands-on work.

Snap Circuits Jr. Electronic Discovery Kit

This kit uses two AA batteries and your child will be taught how to power a circuit board and understand how circuits work. The kit has been child-proofed, meaning you won’t have to worry about your kids getting shocked. Your child can create endless arrangements of circuits with this kit, meaning they can use it multiple times.

Summary

Hopefully, this guide has helped you with shopping for gifts this Christmas. Don’t worry if your gift isn’t perfect, children will always find a way to make a gift more entertaining. Just remember to enjoy this holiday season with your family.

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Paul

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