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Every year at Christmas the children have things that they want – of course they do! Toys and games that they have seen and would love Father Christmas to leave for them on Christmas morning. I don’t mind that, and I’ll always try and get the kids something that they ask for at Christmas, but I also like to think carefully about the rest of their presents. Items that they will use and love, but with a little educational element to keep their brains thinking.
Educational gifts for kids don’t have to be boring. There are loads of cool science gifts, puzzles, family games and more which they won’t even realise they’re learning from. All of the gifts I have listed for you here are really affordable too – so there are no huge price tags to worry about. Just simple, affordable Christmas presents for kids to help them learn.
STEM Gifts For Kids
I have always loved science and all things STEM, I even have a Masters degree in engineering. Nurturing a love of the sciences in my kids in a fun way is really important to me, and toys are always the first place to get them to engage.
For getting started with science the Science4You My First Science Kit is perfect. It is suitable for ages 4+and has activities that work on concentration, memory or creativity while playing. Help them to discover how to make paintings with soap bubbles and grow a flower garden. It includes everything they need for their first science experience.
Building and construction toys are always popular, and Geomags fit the bill perfectly. The magnetic pieces make for easy building, however it also means they are not suitable for children under the age of 3. Baseplates help secure structures while the children build them higher and higher.
If you would like a construction toy for younger children then Stickle Bricks work really well. The durable bricks come in fun, vibrant colours and are designed for little hands to easily take apart and put back together. Suitable from 18 months old you can introduce STEM activities in a fun way from an early age.
Jaques of London have a beautiful range of toys for boys and girls. One of those is this beautiful wooden lorry, with a magnetic crane. Children can learn about magnets and forces as they play, lifting the magnetic crates on and off the back of the lorry. The lorry comes packaged beautifully in a box with a Jaques of London ribbon tied around it, meaning you don’t even have to wrap it again if you don’t want to! It is made of 100% FSC approved wood and painted in bright water-based paint. If a crane isn’t their cup of tea then they sell more educational toys to choose from.
Including maths in games is one of the best ways to practice. Sum Swamp is fun game for reinforcing addition and subtraction skills in children aged 5+. It is for 2-4 players, and rolling the 3 dice creates a sum which must be solved in order to move forward. The first player to reach the end of the game board wins the game.
Build your very own robots with the Robots In Motion building set. Suitable from age 5+ they can follow the instructions in the included activity guide or design their own robot from scratch. It is compatible with the other Gears! Gears! Gears! building set, so you can combine them to have the ultimate engineering set for kids.
I know that not all children are keen to sit and read, but with the right book you can soon catch their attention. As soon as they open The Weather:Pop Up Book they will be captivated by the pop-up scene that unfolds. A swirling tornado and high waves at sea are combined with informative description of its weather event. The book ends with a piece of the effects of climates change.
Ever since I was a kid I loved doing puzzles, and it’s still the case now. My youngest has inherited that love, and I’m excited to let him have this Snail and the Whale puzzle on Christmas Day. Large jigsaws like this are perfect for little hands and gets them away from screens to have a bit of play time on the floor. They are great for their fine motor skills and for practicing problem solving too.
Don’t forget to check out my educational activities for preschoolers for lots more ideas for at home play
For older children, the 80 piece Dodo World Of Animals Observation Puzzle will keep them busy. Once they have built the jigsaw they have the added fun of searching for the animals on the map. The boarder of the puzzle has images which they can then search for on the map and see where they come from.
Not all puzzles have to be in jigsaw form, and Treasure Trails are proof of that. You can purchase a trail for your local area, or an area you want to visit, and follow the clues to have an adventure. They take around 2 hours to complete, and you can use your phone to get clues if you get completely stuck. It’s a great way to get outside and away from screens for a bit of fun and learning some problem solving and map reading skills along the way.
For bigger kids, puzzles can be a great way to learn about something new. They can learn about the body with the Human Body Under X-Ray jigsaw. Solve the puzzle and then use the UV torch to complete the missions. It is an 86 piece puzzle and is suitable for ages 6-10.
Can you link 400 facts together somehow? The Factopia book can do just that. Follow the trail of 400 facts and be amazed from start to finish.
I don’t know a kid who hasn’t gone through a Paw Patrol phase at one point or another, and mine are both still in the midst of it. The Paw Patrol Smart Phone and Ryders Alphabet Tablet are great for introducing numbers and letters in a fun way. No pressure, just fun with Ryder and the pups with some learning along the way.
For dinosaur mad kids you can get a Vintage Style Dinosaur Chart to decorate their bedroom or playroom. It features some of the different species of dinosaur, displayed in a tasteful way so that even grown ups can appreciate it.
Don’t forget to check out my stocking filler ideas to make sure they get something they really love this Christmas
I find role play games some of the best for child development. Pretending to cook up a meal in the Smoby Chef’s Restaurant, using a Casdon Kenwood Toy Mixer, opening a Sweet Shop or doing the vacuuming with a toy cordless Dyson – it’s all educational! They are learning life skills, practicing social skills and working out how to act in “real life”. Plus it keep them entertained for hours.
One of my favourite ways of teaching my kids to follow instructions, practice numbers and study science is through baking. They don’t even realise they’re learning and we all get a tasty treat at the end – so everyone’s a winner! Nadiya Hussain’s Deluxe Baking Set For Kids is designed with little hands in mind. With slightly smaller tools and 6 recipe cards to choose from your little chef will be gaining independence in the kitchen in no time!
Interactive toys are great for young children’s development, and Clappy The Animated Monkey is here to help. Press his left foot and he will play an interactive game. Press his right food and he will play the song If You’re Happy And You Know It. Batteries are included so you can get playing straight away.
I was sent some of these items in exchange for inclusion in this guide. All opinions are my own.
If you would like to get your hands on the Factopia book then enter via Rafflecopter below.a Rafflecopter giveaway
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The closing date is 11:59 pm on Thursday 18th August 2022
The prize is a Factopia, no cash alternative
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Looking For More Activities at Christmas With Kids?
- 11 Things To Fill Your Homemade Advent Calendar
- Christmas Films You Have To Watch This Festive Season
- Making A Gingerbread House With Toddlers