There are plenty of reasons that families want to give non-toy gifts for birthdays and holidays including minimizing clutter and saving some money. But did you know that kids actually benefit from having fewer toys?
With that in mind, I’ve gathered the best non-toy gift ideas for kids.
There are lots of options for non-toy gifts that are really fun and educational! Check out some of these great ideas that are sure to please all types of kiddos.
Kid-focused STEAM boxes are a cool new way to spoil your kids. You can get a particular one or a subscription for up to 12 monthly boxes. I suppose that technically these are filled with toys of sorts, but these toys are educational, stimulating, and challenge your kids thinking and creativity.
- Kiwi Crate – a subscription service that delivers a new box of goodies for future scientists artists and makers every month. Choose from options for kids ages 0-16 and send them 1,3,6, or 12 boxes.
- Tinkering Labs Electric Motors Catalyst Kit – this kit lets your son or daughter build robotic creations. The kit contains challenge cards, real wood pieces, electric motors, and hardware. This kit can even be used to power Legos and model cars.
- Boolean Box For Girls – a build it yourself computer kit designed by and for girls. She’ll learn to code, build her own electronics, and find new and fun ways to be creative. This box also comes with lifetime access to online learning with Boolean University.
- Super Science Discovery Box – this supersized kit comes with over 175 pieces for kids to explore many aspects of STEM. It’s great for introducing your child to STEM principles and letting him or her experiment with a variety of tools.
- STEM Club – this is a subscription service offered by Amazon.com for kids from 3-13 years old. It’s a great way to find out which aspects of STEM your child engages with the most.
Arts and crafts supplies.
The options are endless when it comes to getting art supplies for kids. The key is to observe them and figure out what things they get most excited about. Whether your child loves to paint, draw, or make jewelry there are tons of arts and crafts kits on Amazon for you to choose from.
- Lulu Jr Book kits – This kit is so fun! Let your child write and illustrate their own full color, 20 page professionally printed hardcover book. This gift is not only fun for your kids but also makes a great memory piece.
- Artist Studio – This 2 sided easel perfectly sized for toddlers comes with a chalkboard, dry erase/magnet board, paper roll, 4 non-spill paint containers, folding storage bins, picture hanging clips, and extra shelving.
- Mega Art & Drawing Set – everything your child could want to make all kinds of artistic creations with 163 pieces from pencils to paint brushes and multiple sketch pads.
A desk, vanity, or bookshelf for their bedroom with accessories.
Do you remember how fun it was to have your own desk and accessories when you were a kid? I loved having my own little stash of ‘office supplies’ because it was just like being a grown up.
- Adjustable desk – this desk isn’t the prettiest to look at, but it’s adjustable which means it can grow with your child from 3-10 years old. The top of the desk tilts up for more comfortable drawing surface and there’s an organizer and drawer to keep supplies neat.
- Vanity set/desk combo – for older boys and girls a small desk is a great way to give them their own space to get ready in the morning. The storage options in the drawers and under the flip up mirror offer plenty of space to keep makeup, jewelry, and school supplies.
- Desk Organizer Set – choose pink or rose gold for the girls and galvanized chrome diamond plate pattern for the boys. Each set comes with multiple pieces for storing papers, pens, magazines, etc.
- Modern Bookshelf – this sleek and modern bookshelf offers plenty of space for books and pictures of friends and family. Let them be creative and fill it up with all their favorite things.
Parent approved electronic devices
- Kindle e-reader – Unlike a regular tablet or Chromebook, a Kindle e-reader is only used to read e-books. The Kindle Unlimited subscription allows kids to choose from millions of titles for a monthly subscription fee. So much better for them than watching YouTube videos all day!
- Amazon Fire Tablet – watch, read, listen, and play with these tablets from Amazon. For parents, they offer you plenty of control when you pair the tablet with Amazon FreeTime service. This service provides unlimited access to more than 16,000 kid-friendly books, videos, and apps, as well as parental controls to help create a unique experience for each child. It can also be used with other Android devices. Get a free trial here.
Name brand clothing, shoes, and accessories.
Since I’m pretty strict on our spending, the kids don’t always get to choose the coolest things or trendiest gear. But that means they get really excited when they do get the newest coolest thing for their birthday or Christmas.
- UGG Boots – I gotta say, I love my UGGs! They’re so warm and cozy, and they’ expanded their styles with more trendy looks. Normally, I make my kids wear the knockoffs you can buy at Famous Footwear and the like. But for special occasions, sometime’s we’ll splurge and get the real deal.
- Addidas tracksuit – it seems like this classic sporty look will never go out of style. There are plenty of similar looking items, but kids, especially, love to have the brand name.
- TOMS shoes – far from the slipper look of the original shoes, the new TOMS come in a variety of styles that are actually really cute!
- Under Armour backpack – let them show off their favorite brand right on their backpack. Backpacks can get pretty expensive, but sometimes it’s worth it to get a quality product.
Season passes to sports events.
In our case, we got season tickets to the high school football and baseball games for our son. He was thrilled! What a treat for him to get to go to Friday night games with all his friends.
If your child loves professional sports and season tickets are out of the budget, consider buying tickets to just one or two games and giving them some money to buy treats and gear while you’re there.
Gift cards for experiences like tours, restaurants, and amusement parks.
- Groupon – you can find amazing deals on things to do at any time of year on Groupon.
- Site seeing tours – we don’t often think about taking tours of our hometown, so you might be surprised at some of the fun things you can do without going far.
- Rain Forest Cafe – if your child has a favorite restaurant but it’s not the kind of place you go to often, they might love a gift card and a promise to go spend some time and money at their favorite place.
- Dave and Busters – video games, virtual reality, food, and more. This is a great gift for older kids, too.
- Movie theatre – treat the kids to dinner and a movie one weekend, or let them go with their friends.
Membership to museums.
Does your child have a favorite museum or love going to the aquarium? A membership pass to their favorite museum would be the perfect gift.
- Groupon – check out their listings to see if you can get a discount on annual membership passes
- Museum gift card – from museums of art and history to children’s museums full of excitement and wonder, kids always have fun in museums about their favorite subjects.
Camping gear and sports equipment.
If you have an outdoorsy child, maybe they would love to go camping or glamping in your backyard. Gift them their very own tent and camping supplies, grab some marshmallows, and have fun even if it’s in your own yard.
- Walk-in Tent – they’ll be much more comfy in a tall walk-in tent with plenty of room to have friends sleep over. Decorate the interior with fairy lights, pillows, blankets and plenty of snacks. You could also gift them a mini projector and hang a sheet for watching movies all night.
- Parachute Hammock – easy to set up, take down and store, these hammocks come with a hanging kit so your kids can be hanging out in a jiffy. Choose from tons of colors and styles.
- Wallbars indoor playground – who knew such a thing even existed?! This cool set can be installed in a bedroom or playroom for ‘outdoor’ fun year-round.
- Golf clubs – sports equipment gets expensive, but as a gift it makes a great surprise for kids who really love the game.
Sleepover supplies and party games
My kids love having their friends over for a sleepover, but parents know that sleepovers can be really stressful for mom and dad. One thing I’ve found that makes it easier is making sure the kids have plenty of things to do.
- Movie themed gift basket – fill the basket with drinks, candy, popcorn, and a gift card for a movie rental or tickets.
- Fuzzy sleeping bag – girls are sure to love this pink fuzzy sleeping bag and pillow set. So cute for a slumber party!
- Pillow bed covers – these are super cool. You just fill each slot with a regular pillow and you have a portable bed anytime you need it.
- Giant Jenga – they’ll be fun for the kids at the sleepover plus you can use them for family game nights, summer barbecues, and more.
Support their favorite hobby
If your kids love photography, music, or cooking get them the supplies they need to improve their skills.
- Camera – it doesn’t have to be an expensive camera, these little Fugifilm Instax cameras are great for capturing life’s little moments.
- Keyboard – this all-inclusive set provides a stand, a stool, headphones, and playing lessons.
- Guitar– if they’re just starting out, this is a great set that includes everything they need to start playing.
- Cooking classes – this is a great option for kids who like to get in the kitchen. These classes come with video instructions, simple supply lists, and end with a home-cooked meal.
What are your favorite non-toy gift ideas for kids?
I feel like I could go on and on with these ideas! I’m actually really excited about getting some of these for our kiddos. If you have a great idea for non-toy gifts, leave me a comment below!