Are toys pilling up in the house? No problem! There are many awesome non-toy gifts for kids out there, many of them fun and healthy alternatives to plastic figurines or dolls. Whether you’re looking for a birthday gift or a present for some other occasion, here are some of the best gifts for kids other than toys.
Take your kids skating or teach them to play mini-golf. Whether indoor or outdoor, activities away from home can help kids use their energy in a healthy way.
2. Tickets to Events
Sports events, movies, plays, concerts—tickets to any of these can make your kid’s day. Make everything cooler by getting the ticket printed with your kid’s name on it and giving it to him or her to keep. But store a digital copy, just in case.
Most museums and zoos offer memberships for families. These are great if you have a large family since they will help you save money on entrance fees. Some kids will also treasure memberships to science magazines or cartoon clubs.
Dance, ballet, piano, riding, drawing, cooking—choose a class that develops your kids’ interests. Find out what classes are available in your area to explore all your options.
Before signing up your kid to any class, ask him or her what she makes of it. A positive answer will make your kid all the more excited about it. And if they’re not excited, you’ll have time to opt for something else.
5. Puzzles & Games
Puzzles and games are some of the best non-toy gifts for kids of all ages. They can help develop problem-solving skills and improve attention and memory, all this while providing hours of fun.
To draw kids to puzzles, choose a subject or theme that they are interested in. When it comes to games, you have lots of choices. From Monopoly Junior to Ticket to Ride, there’s always some great game out there that your child doesn’t know yet.
6. A Sturdy Camera
A digital camera can inspire children to spend more time outdoors interacting with other kids their age. It can also reduce their screen time. When shopping for a camera for small kids, don’t forget that durability matters more than features.
7. Arts and Crafts Supplies
A set of watercolors and paintbrushes, a small easel, a portable drawing set—any of these can be fun alternatives to toys. If your kid has an artistic bent, these awesome non-toy gifts for kids can help develop it
8. Simple & Safe Kitchen Tools
Getting kids interested in cooking early on can be a wise idea. It can get them involved in daily kitchen activities while also encouraging them to make healthier food choices. Start with simple, safe, and sturdy tools like whiskers, measuring cups, and wooden spoons
9. Music Gear for Kids
Do your kids love music? Encourage their budding passion with a pair of colorful headphones, a dance mat, a set of drums, a keyboard, or any other musical gift you think would suit them
10. Book Subscription
One way to get kids interested in reading is to gift them a book subscription. Having books arrive every month through mail can build anticipation and inspire kids to finish what they’re reading before the new books arrive
11. Sporting & Outdoor Equipment
Go beyond the usual soccer ball or badminton set and choose sporting or outdoor gear that encourages your kid to stay active. Trampolines, tents for kids, a hiking backpack with a compass, all of these can be big hits.
In the end, non-toy gifts for kids are not a compromise—they’re a step up from most dolls and figurines. With so many awesome non-toy gifts around, your kids won’t miss their toys anytime soon2.