All kids (big and small) love toys. Go ahead, ask a child what he or she wants for the holidays and the majority will say, “Toys!” However, parents don’t want to gift just any toys that will bore their kids to bits and very likely congest the toy chest after unwrapping them. They want something that meets safety standards, and more than just fun and games. Parents seek toys that offer children some opportunity to thrive, to discover and learn. They want to gift toys that will engage in children’s senses, spark their imaginations and enable them to interact with each other in a bright, cheerful and positive way. Just imagine during a holiday gathering with friends and family — how wonderful it is to see children gathered together, all eager to learn and having so much fun doing so.
It can be discerning to parents and a total waste of time having to research thousands of toys (especially during the holiday season) out there in the market today. Just think how stressful it is to figure out which toys have lasting play value that will delight, engage and inspire children. Perhaps there is a future scientist, technologist, engineer, mathematician (STEM) or an artist (STEAM) in the family. Parents won’t be able to sleep well at night, without knowing that they are gifting their little ones toys that encourage STEM or STEAM learning — safe toys that help kids reach their potential.
Here is an amazing Holiday Gift Guide of toys that will be sure to help parents sleep with a peace of mind. There is something for every kid, small or big, and also for grown-ups who just don’t want to grow up. In addition, below is a list of 12 categories to look out for when searching for safe, fun and educational toys this holiday season that will be sure to help kids thrive:
- Arts & Crafts are great for those times when kids just want to stay home, or when it’s too cold or too hot to go outside. The mind and time are too precious to let kids just stay home and watch tv. Look for arts and crafts that are full of bright ideas to offer children lots of fun.
- Building & Construction develops creativity, promotes fine motor skills and supports child development.
- Cell Phones for Kids not only enables them to feel grown up, but also give parents peace of mind while their little ones are away from home.
- Electronics & Learning Tablets, and Karaoke sets are not only fun for kids, but also for adults too. You’ll surprised how much grown-ups don’t remember what they learned in science class when they were kids. Thanks to children’s tablets, parents can learn with their kids. Karaoke machines can inspire future pop stars or grammy winners — you never know!
- Virtual Reality Goggles is very popular with sci-fi enthusiasts. It can transform a small bedroom into an intergalactic space. Finally, dreamers can play games with those from another country, travel to the solar system, explore the unknown or watch their favorite concert right in the comfort and privacy of home — simply by downloading apps.
- Homes & Garden Kits, Ant Farms are wonderful for inspiring chefs who enjoy growing their own herbs, and for curious future scientists who want to study ants.
- Plush animals or baby animals that actually hatch from an egg, speak and walk help babies and toddlers learn about emotions, feelings and how to nurture loved ones.
- Pretend Play toys enable children learn to take turns, share, and solve problems.
- Science & Learning toys such as telescopes teach kids astronomy and microscopes make learning about insects and plant life even more interesting.
- Scooters help develop fine motor skills needed useful for various life skills, learning and sports. Many kids love riding their scooters to school, because they’re a lot of fun, easier and faster than walking and scooters look cool.
- Hoverboards were a worldwide phenomenon last year, many celebrities (actors, athletes, dancers, musicians) were seen riding them, and even entrepreneurs such as Mark Cuban are obsessed with them. This year, Razor came out with one that’s new, improved and safer than ever before. They’re great for teens kids and grown-ups who want to conveniently get to their destination in warp speed and looking ultra hip.
- Subscription Kits for Kids, such as those with a science theme are great for aspiring scientists and engineers. Kids love presents, and subscription kits will give them just that, plus learning fun.
Originally published at medium.com