Like many of you, I have had my “Santa hat” on lately- and have been working on finding the right gifts for my kids for the holidays. Now my older boys mainly want to receive a the gift of cash…. so they can save up to buy big-ticket items like a laptop or the latest iPhone, or whatever other gadget has captured their attention (anyone else's teen want a hoverboard this Christmas?). But the tweens…. they are still hoping for a pile of brightly wrapped gifts under the tree- and they lost no time in creating their holiday wish lists this year! So based on what they are asking for, as well as some of the items they received earlier this year as birthday gifts- here are my top 10 picks for great gift ideas for tweens this year!
Let's get this party started!
My son Jack was invited to a friend's house to sleepover earlier in the year, and the kids teamed up with the adults to play Settlers of Catan– and he was instantly hooked on this fun strategy game where “settlers” race to build on the Isle of Catan . So we purchased it for the family and Jack taught everyone how to play. It is still our go-to board game whenever a rainy day strikes!
As much as my kids love to listen to music through their headphones- they also like to use a Bluetooth Speaker when wanting to stream Apple Music while playing basketball, riding their ripstick in the driveway, etc. What I love about this speaker is that it is waterproof- because more than once I've looked outside during a rainstorm and noticed that someone left the speaker outside!
My girls are still really into making friendship bracelets, and love to watch YouTube tutorials to get new ideas. But making the leap from video to actually tying the threads the right way to create the intended design can be tough- which is why they are asking for the iLoom this year. You place your iPad in the holder and use the videos to organize your strings- it makes it so much easier to create more complex bracelets!
We have owned the original Rush Hour game for years, and the kids would pull it out now and again- but the problem for us is that it is a 1-player game and so my kids would quickly lose interest in it as they wandered off to see what everyone else was up to. But a few weeks ago we were sent the new Rush Hour® Shift game to try- and they are absolutely hooked! This version is for two players and incorporates Instruction Cards which makes it even more challenging and fun!
My daughters are really into Fuzzy Socks this year- and these socks come in sets at a really great price- so I can buy one set and use as stocking stuffers for both of them!
So your tween loves LEGO®- and has moved to the stage where they like the BIG sets- the ones with 500 pieces that take days to put together…. and costs $75 each! Yikes! If that's the stage you are at- you need to know about Pley! Think of it as a subscription service for LEGO! You pay a monthly fee and you keep a queue of building sets you would like to receive. Pley mails you a set from your queue- your child builds it, you take lots of pictures while they play with it, and then you then take it apart and mail it back- and they send you a new set! It is endless building fun!
I have written about the Anki Drive set here before, even sharing how we created an entire race car birthday party theme around these awesome sets. Well now the folks at Anki have come up with a new set- Anki Overdrive that my kids are already begging for! You use the app to drive your car around the track, and now the tracks can be elevated, loop underneath and over other tracks- it adds a whole new cool element to racing the cars!
What tween isn't fascinated with robots? Especially one that you have to build yourself, knows a thousand words and phrases and gets smarter the more you work with him?! This Meccano MeccaNoid G15 Robot will make an amazing gift that I know my kids will play with for a very long time!
Once they hit age 12, it seems that I can no longer get my kids to wear coats in the winter…. but for some reason, they all still like to wear gloves! But that makes it hard to control their devices! So these Touchscreen Gloves will make great inexpensive stocking stuffers!
For a family like ours who loves to take road trips- Ticket to Ride is a great strategic board game that capitalizes on something we already now a bit about! In this game, travelers take a cross country train ride by collecting train cars to construct rail routes that allow them to connect cities to each other. The goal is to traverse the United States in just 7 days!
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What are your tweens asking for this year?