We have to give a shoutout to all the kids out there, who are managing this pandemic. It’s not easy to be far from friends, activities, teachers and in-person learning, and kids have proven to be resilient. So this is the year to reward them with something extra special, that will pass the time we’re staying at home safely this next few weeks.
Buy early. Very early. Parents, we suggest that you buy those hot holiday gifts right now because they will be harder than ever to check off your list this year due to supply shortages. There have been many innovations in toys this year, making this holiday season extraordinary for all the kids who have been resilient through these tough times and are sure to be on the nice list. If you are fortunate enough, please consider buying an extra toy or 10 to donate to kids in need to spread extra joy this year. Here are some faves:
1. Kids will love the LEGO City Deep Space Rocket and Launch Control, especially if they loved the SpaceX launch and were born to explore the universe, and parents will love that they are helping to inspire the next generation of astronauts. The NASA-inspired toy rocket launch set features a modular, multi-stage rocket with cockpit, booster and payload storage modules, as well as a monorail system with stops at the rocket, research area and launch control tower. There’s also a launchpad with opening tower arms; a rover with an articulated, grappling arm; and a control tower with detachable window section, fold-out function and countdown function. Kids can use a mobile device as a screen for interactive play opportunities with the City Explorers app. LEGO lovers also will enjoy other LEGO innovations, so don’t miss the LEGO Art Sets, LEGO Dots and more.
2. Capture and share all those magical holiday moments with an Insta360 camera, the high-quality action camera that’s a must-have for the holiday. The Insta360 GO is the tiniest camera in the world, weighing in at 18.3 grams, and can literally be mounted anywhere. The ONE R 1-Inch Edition is another great family time companion, designed to give families of creators, athletes and adventurers a single tool that can adapt to any shoot. It comes with a lens co-engineered with Leica, the 360 mod and an invisible selfie stick for drone-like footage. This camera will be great for family snowing/skiing trips or any action and adventure you have planned. Never miss a magical moment in motion or a family action sequence again.
3. Parents will love that Spin Master’s tech toys are chock full of innovation, imagination, technology and a touch of magic. Experience wacky, over-the-top battles with Ninja Bots, hilarious, interactive battling robots. Kids will love that every Ninja Bot is unique, with its own name, look, set of silly weapons, and personality that comes to life with over 100 sounds and movements. Kids train their Ninja Bots, which are equipped with IR sensors, through hand gestures to become better fighters and to level up from white to black belt. Animal-loving youngsters will be over the moon with Present Pets, the only gifts that unbox themselves. Waiting inside each Fancy or Glitter Puppy-themed box is one of two possible pups available, so you won’t know which adorable pet you’re getting until she paws her way out. Present Pets feature over 100 sounds and actions, bringing to life the true happiness of being surprised with your very own puppy.
4. After watching their parents tirelessly working from home, kids will love having a computer of their own. Enter the Tanoshi Scholar children’s computer: the perfect gift for kids ages 6-12. Parents will love that the Tanoshi Scholar includes all of the features of the Tanoshi 2-in-1 that they know and love: a 10.1″ HD detachable touchscreen tablet, free parental controls, preloaded Google Docs and Sheets and kids coding apps, and access to over 3 million apps in the Google Play Store. There’s also a full kid-size, ergonomic keyboard. Plus, the Tanoshi Scholar — available in blue or purple — is incredibly durable, splash and dust proof, equipped with a webcam privacy filter and blue light filter, and compatible with Zoom.
5. Kids will love to the max L.O.L. Surprise! O.M.G. Remix Super Surprise, which features two rock bands and 70+ surprises. In the ultimate rock concert unboxing experience, expect to find four Outrageous Millennial Girls (aka O.M.G.) fashion dolls, four sister dolls and four rock instruments that really play music. Of course, all the dolls have outrageous, rock-star style. Then, get these rock stars ready to take off in style with the L.O.L. Surprise` Remix O.M.G. Plane. This 4-in-1 playset transforms into a plane, a car, a recording studio and a mixing booth. Kids will be overjoyed unboxing 50 surprises, including working lights and sounds, a drink cart with plates and cups, rolling suitcases, overhead compartments that open and close, seatbelts and more. Parents are sure to be entertained watching kids squeal with delight as they unbox these favorite holiday surprises for endless entertainment.
6. For kids who really want a pony, PonyCycle’s prize horses and new fabulous unicorns are the next best thing. This first-of-its-kind simulation animal toy, which uses no batteries or electricity, makes kids feel like they are riding a real, live horse. Kids will love gently bouncing up and down on the saddle, making the horse’s legs and head move forward and backward, and riding forward in a galloping motion. Parents will love the safety features and the fact that this furry friend can be used both indoors and out.
7. ArmoGear Boxing Battle will have kids of all ages wanting to step into the ring and put their boxing skills to the test. Kids will love the three ways to play: be the first to punch out all your opponent’s LED target lights in Boxing Mode, practice for matches in Training Mode or hit the lights as they appear in Advanced Mode. The set includes everything kids need to be ready to jump in the ring: two Boxing Battle vests and two pairs of child-size boxing gloves. Kids will also love the voice recording that guides players through the game and keeps score. Parents will love that this set keeps kids active while also safe — the padding at the back of the vests provides protection during rough play and the soft boxing gloves make sure no one gets hurt.
8. The Merge Headset and Merge Cube bundle is an out-of-this-world present this holiday. Kids will love that the Merge AR/VR headset transports you anywhere: they can go on virtual field trips, see life from new perspectives and experience learning firsthand. Parents will love that it’s made out of a comfortable and rugged foam, so it’s perfect for kids. The curated collection of virtual field trips and other 360-degree educational videos and experiences in the Merge Miniverse online library enables you to travel the world without leaving home. The Merge Cube lets you hold virtual 3D objects, enabling an entirely new way to learn and interact with the digital world. Kids can explore a galaxy in the palm of their hand, hold and examine fossils and ancient artifacts like a paleontologist, watch as a volcano erupts before their eyes, and create virtual objects that they can hold and share. When paired with the Merge EDU platform, the Merge Cube engages kids in hands-on science and STEM lessons, and is perfect for in-class, remote and hybrid learning.
9. Kids will love the screen-free tech toy/gaming console Jogoball. It is filled with over 1,000 hours of content, so no two games are ever the same. The ball is the console, and the silicon sleeve encloses the content/games. Throw, shake, tap, spin, punch and twist the Jogoball for hours of fun. Parents will love that a silicon sleeve — the adorable blue Hugibo — protects little hands and hardwood floors alike. Jogoball offers 15 games, for both solo and group play, across four different categories: mind (like different trivia games), active (such as endurance workouts), music (use Jogoball as an instrument to make music), and social games (i.e., ice breakers).
10. Most every little girl dreams of the perfect American Girl gift for the holidays, and they will love this ultimate splurge — Joss’s Volkswagen Surf Bus. Joss, the 2020 American Girl of the Year, loves riding to the beach in this surf van, which belongs to her brother Liam. Kids will love the working headlights, turn signals, windshield wipers and radio, as well as sounds for the horn and ignition and a button to push to hear a message from Joss. There’s also a storage bench that folds into a bed, a pop-up stove, a fold-out table and tons of accessories. Parents will love the quality craftsmanship and its ability to keep kids busy as bees with lots of imaginative play.
11. Fisher-Price Imaginext DC Super Friends Super Surround Batcave is the largest, most-interactive Batcave within the world of Imaginext. Parents will love that this Batcave, which features multicolor LEDs, 200+ sounds and phrases, and an extreme amount of play space, will keep their children busy for hours. Kids will love that this set comes with five exclusive figures and fun features like a working Bat-signal and power pads that give figures access to the jail and rotate the Batsuit displays.