Device Free Holiday Gifts for Kids

by | Dec 12, 2018

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Have your kids made their holiday wish lists yet? If your kids are like most, their holiday wish lists are comprised mostly of digital devices this year – smartphones, tablets, computers or game consoles. Sound familiar?

Devices top the charts among the most-wanted gifts, but there are other gifts out there that provide device-free fun, engage kids in creative pursuits and challenge them to interact with friends, siblings, cousins and, oh yeah, us parents.

We have rounded up some of this year’s hot gifts for kids. They span across the age ranges so there are options for all school-age kids.


L.O.L. Surprise! House L.O.L. Surprise! dolls are mini interactive dolls that capitalize on the un-boxing phenomenon. This L.O.L Surprise! House includes 85+ surprises and at three feet tall & three feet wide there’s plenty to keep your L.O.L. Surprise! Fan engaged! There are interactive features such as a working elevator, lights and sounds, a pool, spa and sandbox, a L.O.L Surprise! exclusive Family (Doll, Lil Sister, Pet), moving truck. Plus furniture to unbox! Recommended age is 5-13.

Discovery Extreme Chemistry. This kit has 40 fun experiments and simple chemical reactions for an engaging, interactive learning experience. It will encourage kids and parents to spend time together through the fun experiments. The kit includes the materials and instructions needed to conduct the simple experiments that teach kids about common chemical reactions. Recommended age is 12 and up.

Hatchimals Mystery. This year’s Hatchimals Mystery are four unique ones that can hatch, leaving the recipient surprised until they see which one of the Hatchibabies hatches! Each one has super fluffy fur and expandable wings and can be trained to learn your name. The recommended age is 5 and older.

Magna-Tiles 32-Piece Clear Colors Set. If your kids love building, solving and having creative fun, consider these cool Magna Tiles. This set of 3D magnetic tiles engages kids by combining math, science and creativity. The tiles are bright, translucent, colorful shapes that will lead to hours of imaginative free play. And they are STEM approved! Recommended for ages 3 and up.

Harry Potter Wizard Training Wands. There is something magical about the appeal of the wands that strikes a chord with every Harry Potter fan. This toy hits squarely on that appeal. Each wand comes with 11 spells for your wizard to learn. The wand gives sound feedback once the spell has been mastered. There are two play modes – one for individual play and one for playing with other wizards. The recommended age is 8 and up.

Cinematic LED Light Box w/322 Letters, Emojis & Numbers. Our teen daughter saw this and fell in love! She just had to have one for her room. Kids can personalize the marquee to get their message out and change it up whenever they wish. It comes with 85 black letters, 237 colored letters, numbers and emojis. It is powered by USB or 6 AA batteries and hangs on the wall or stands on its own.

Hairdorables Surprise Doll and Accessories. These are the hot dolls spun off from the popular YouTube hair-styling vlogging sensation. The pack comes with one surprise doll (because isn’t it all about the surprise toys this year?!) and accessories.The recommended age is 3 years and up.

Sweet Tooth 500 Piece Puzzle. Okay, so maybe we don’t want them EATING candy, but there’s far less harm (and tooth decay) in this fun puzzle than in all the candy represented! It has 500 pieces to keep them busy (and off their devices). Finished dimensions are 23.5″ x 18″.

Note: Our age guidelines are based on those provided by the manufacturers. Use your judgement based on the development stage of your child(ren).

Struggling with kids and their devices? Looking for helping with parental controls or web filtering? We have tools to help. Check out our Reviews section for info on apps and tools to help keep your family safe online. If you need personalized help with topics such as parental control app installation, device management setup, home web filtering, or anti-virus software, schedule a One to One session where we can assist you via phone or video chat. Does your school, club or organization need a talk for parents and students about dealing with devices, social media and the challenges of juggling it all? Check out in fo on our Talks Modeling, Mentoring and Managing for parents and Digital Citizenship for Kids.

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