’Tis the season for gift giving, and what’s more fun than seeing the happy faces of kids, from babies and toddlers all the way to picky tweens? In a year that has had its share of ups and downs, parents and kids will appreciate the feeling of normalcy when they gather to light candles, unwrap gifts under the tree and celebrate their families’ traditions.
If you’re stuck on what exactly the kids in your life want (and what’s hot this year), don’t worry, we’ve got plenty of ideas. And remember, this season is going to see a lot of shipping delays, so plan ahead with our guide to the most important thing — getting those gifts there on time. For more gift ideas check out our roundups of gifts for her, gifts for him, practical gifts, top-rated Nordstrom gifts, 5-star Amazon gifts, gifts for pets and gifts for everyone else on your list.
Gifts for babies
Sophie La Giraffe Teething Toy ($24.99; nordstrom.com)
Possibly the loveliest and most classic teething toy on the market, Sophie is easy to clean and has been beloved by babies for decades.
Munchkin Mozart Magic Cube with Musical Sounds ($24.99; target.com)
This bestselling toy lets baby explore making musical sounds — their own symphony — by pressing the cube.
SmartNoggin NogginStik Developmental Light-Up Rattle ($22.99; amazon.com)
Not your average rattle, this smart rattle actually reacts to babies’ movements by lighting up in different colors, helping them learn visual tracking.
Dolce Activity Zebra Stuffed Animal And Plush Toy ($24.99; target.com)
Rich fabrics and high-quality stitching mean this toy is built to last, and a flower squeaker will help build auditory skills.
Gifts for toddlers
WowWee Pinkfong Baby Shark Official Musical Playpad ($19.99; amazon.com)
You thought Baby Shark was over? Au contraire! You can still sing about sharks with the toddler in your life with this playpad that teaches memory and motor skills.
Fat Brain Toys Tobbles Neo ($26.95; amazon.com)
Toddlers get into everything, they love to stack and smash, and with this colorful set they can engage in imaginative play — building, balancing and toppling.
Kids Leopard Organic Hooded Towel ($39; crateandbarrel.com)
We’re suckers for sweet cozy towels, and this leopard face hoodie, designed in partnership with the Jane Goodall Institute for animal conservation, is perfect for little wild things.
Kenley Toddler Montessori Sensory Board for Toddlers ($25.99, originally $34.99; amazon.com)
Did we mention toddlers need a lot of things to do? Help them learn about the world and the way things work with this learning toy that includes ties, belt hooks and buttons — perfect for staying busy in the car or on a quiet afternoon.
Little Tikes Super Chef Kitchen ($89.99; amazon.com)
Play kitchens have come a long way in the past few years, and this one comes with all the bells and whistles fit for a mini chef. It features a burner with electronic cooking sounds, cabinets with real storage, a working microwave door, supplies like a frying pan, coffee pot, plates, utensils and even a phone so they don’t miss any incoming orders.
Gifts for kids age 4 to 8
Star Wars The Child Animatronic Edition ($59.99; amazon.com)
Last year’s most popular toy is back — and this time, Baby Yoda is giggling, wiggling its ears and using the Force (if their head is patted three times).
A Game of Cat & Mouth by Exploding Kittens ($22.99, originally $24.99; target.com)
This game, suitable for ages 7 and up, is awesome for so many reasons: The carrying case is the game board, it’s an at-home pinball “machine” and you play by slingshotting balls into a cat’s mouth.
Squeakee The Balloon Dog ($44.88, originally $59.99; amazon.com)
One of the hottest toys of 2020, this balloon dog can be trained, fed and even “goes potty.” They can also pop him with a pin, watch him deflate and inflate him with a tiny pump.
Outree Kids Pod Swing Seat 100% Cotton Child Hammock Chair (starting at $38.99; amazon.com)
Perfect for quiet kids who like alone time, this hammock is more than a swinging chair, it’s a place to hide out and read or play games. Reviewers say it’s “great for kids with sensory issues.”
Future Astronaut Kids’ Jigsaw Puzzle by Puzzle Huddle ($10.36; amazon.com)
Something Wild! Disney Maleficent Card Game ($7.97; amazon.com)
The perfect stocking stuffer or small gift that’s fun for the whole family. Just play the cards to make sets and runs, and if you score a set, you get the Maleficent figure and her special power to help win the game.
Learning Resources Botley The Coding Robot 2.0 Activity Set ($76.49; amazon.com)
With this fun robot, they can learn STEM skills without being parked in front of a screen, and they’ll love building coding sequences that transform Botley into a train, police car, ghost and more!
Creatable World Deluxe Character Kit - Chestnut Brown Wavy Hair ($25.49; target.com)
We’ve obsessed with Creatable World dolls, because each doll comes with six outfits and long and short hair wigs that allow for true creativity — your child can create over 100 looks from each!
Gifts for kids age 8 to 12
Nintendo Switch Lite - Turquoise ($199.99; target.com)
Probably one of the hottest handheld games on the market right now, this lite version in turquoise is exactly what a casual gamer wants to find under the tree.
Funkoverse: DC Comics 100 4-Pack Board Game ($20.98; amazon.com)
There’s a lot of Funkoverse-obsessed tweens out there, and this strategy game with different scenarios and double-sided game play will keep them happy — and busy — for hours.
Chalso Sterling Silver Bracelet with Initial Heart Charm (starting at $29.20; etsy.com)
For that little one who can’t stop telling you how grown up they are, this sweet initial bracelet is perfect for showing off at school (even if it’s remote).
Crayola Marker Maker DIY Craft Kit ($19.99; amazon.com)
Markers are fun, but making your own markers is even better. For older kids who like to craft and create things, this kit allows them to explore color mixing and assembly when they blend and build their own markers.
Kodak Underwater Disposable Camera ($16, originally $20; urbanoutfitters.com)
If you’ve got a pool or a kid who loves the beach, it doesn’t get cooler than this underwater camera, which takes 27 pictures and is waterproof up to 50 feet.
Logrotate Starry Moon Night-Light ($18.99; amazon.com)
Why use a night-light when you can light up the room — gently — with the light of the moon? This lamp is 3D-printed to look like the lunar surface, and it comes in four sizes and glows in 16 colors.
Roller Derby Candi Grl Quad Roller Skate ($109; urbanoutfitters.com)
Roller skates are back in style and a great form of exercise. They’ll love showing off their moves in super fabulous skates available in three soft colorways with sparkly wheels. See our other roller skating picks here.