It seems like your Pre-K kid is in a perpetual state of discovery and motion. In our annual quest for the best and the brightest gifts for preschoolers, we found the new toys and gadgets that are as unique as she is. Read on for 21 ways to help embrace this amazing stage.
These magnetic plush toys are bound to be all the rage with the preschool camp, who can mix, match, and create cool combos among Iris Unicorn, Randy Orangutan, Brady Lion, Hazel Sloth, Miguel Frog, and the newest animoodle on the block—limited edition Sophie Elephant, whose profits will go exclusively to the African Wildlife Foundations. Because all parts are magnetic, you can arrange them on the fridge, add two heads to one body, put feet on backwards—the possibilities really run wild! Cute bio cards are also included.
Available at theanimoodles.com, $25 each.
Young Designers Architect Set
For builders with all that block and brick experience now under preschool belts, Young Designers Architect Set takes building to the next level. By fitting together some 46 pieces for walls, roofs, columns, and more, little architects can build 3-D houses while sharpening STEM skills.
Available at lakeshorelearning.com, $29.99.
Domino Junior Friends Dino
New from Goliath Games, you only need one player to have all sorts of dino fun with this game and just add more players when friends come over or parents or siblings want to join in. Thanks to a spacer tool, it’s easy for smaller hands to set up these dominos. Preschoolers will love watching the chain reaction that leads to a volcanic eruption!
Available from walmart.com, $17.77.
Razor Lil’ E Electric Scooter
It’s electric! Designed for ages three and up, little riders can further master balance, coordination, and motor skills with this electric scooter from Razor. Once they’ve got it down, they can cruise at 2 MPH for up to an hour. Plus, three wheels and a soft start throttle make this a stable, safe ride.
Available at razor.com, $69.99.
Electro Dough Kit
Four-and five-year-olds who already know their way around dough can now make it conductive! Then the fun really starts with simple circuits to make shapes and animals buzz or illuminate. Dough recipe included.
Available at techwillsaveus.com, $29.99.
Preschoolers to the rescue! Once they have a Rescue Runt to take care of, it’s their responsibility to use the included grooming kit to brush out their matted fur, clean dirty paws, mend bruises, and make those sad tears disappear. Rescue Runts’ ears will perk up in gratitude! And the process begins anew once these furry friends get messy again. If you have a preschooler begging for a pet (or eager for more independence in general), this is a great starter version in Shepherd, Husky, Spotty and Spaniel breeds. Act fast—“adoption centers” have already been selling out all over town. Learn more here.
Available at walmart.com, $19.99.
Rox’s Secret Code
It’s a book! It’s a lesson in how to code! It’s a robot! It’s all those things in Rox’s Secret Code, published in November from POW! Kids Books. Written by Mara Lecocq and Nathan Archambault and illustrated by Jessika von Innerebner for ages four to seven. And turn to the last page for instructions on how to download the corresponding app and get coding.
Available at amazon.com, $11.92.
Play’n Pack – City
The only thing cuter than Playpa’s new little bag of artistic fun is seeing a little preschooler pack it all up and skip off to the next adventure. When they’re ready for an imaginative pit stop, this pack is stocked with stickers, crayons, wooden toy cars, alphabet cards, and a coloring roll over six feet long!
Available at us.olliella.com, $29.95.
Petit Collage Board Game
Petit Collage is serving up four new boutique board games this year for ages four to eight, and we are ready to jet set to serious fun with Pack Your Bags! Two-to-four players will need to pack the right clothes for various destinations. And all toys and games from Petit Collage are eco-friendly—these are made of recycled materials and vegetable inks for safe fun.
Available at petitcollage.com, $24.
Geosafari Jr. Talking Globe
For preschoolers learning about the larger world around them and empathy for all who live here, this interactive globe is a great way to put the world right at their fingertips, with a touch pen that can measure the distance between countries and teach about animals on different continents. Wildlife Warrior Bindi Irwin voices 10+ hours of audio over three learning modes to keep junior geographers exploring from ages four on up to 12.
Available at educationalinsights.com, $129.99.
Wooden Toy Breakfast Tray
Just as much as you may be loving all the latest from Hearth & Hand with Magnolia’s home décor line for Target, so too will little chefs adore their new breakfast tray. The darling set comes complete with 18 wooden pieces, including buttered toast, strawberries, eggs two ways, and all the tools needed to start brushing up on those breakfast in bed skills—in plenty of time for next Mother’s Day!
Available at target.com, $24.99.
Flower Press Art DIY Kit
New form Hape, preserve the beauty of the outdoors year-round with this cute pressing kit. Paints and brush are included to then transform dried flowers or plants into artwork as original as Mother Nature’s.
Older preschoolers can light up stockings with STEAM this year thanks to Circuit Mania’s LED light templates, available in Seahorse, Lighthouse, Flower, Unicorn, and Rocket designs. Conductive tape, LED light, construction paper, and cell battery are also included.
Available at hbcircuitmania.com, $9.99.
Playzone-Fit: Double Maze Board
What a fun way to build up those balance skills preschoolers are still working on while keeping little minds up to the challenge of moving three balls through two mazes. Playzoners can start with their hands and work up to fancy footwork. And with a height attachment, this game will grow as they do.
Available at mindware.com, $39.95.
Tock the Learning Clock
Preschoolers can now tell time … to the beat! With two learning modes, Tock the Learning Clock from Learning Resources chimes in with dance party tunes for every right answer and also prompts kids to match the hands to a digital display of the time. Extra perks include a nightlight and “okay to wake” light if you need to make sure dance parties don’t kick off too early.
Available at amazon.com, $24.99.
The Little Medical School Veterinarian Kit
The Little Medical School has assigned an adorable and award-winning line of STEM toy kits, including My Little Veterinarian, My Little Pediatrician, and My Little Sports Medicine themes. Each kit is fully stocked with everything a physician would need. In line with the huge pet care trend, we can’t wait to open up the Veterinarian Kit, which includes a white lab coat, doctor ID badge, adoption certificate, plush dog, dog bone cookie cutter, diploma, and ever so much more for little vets in training.
Available at littlemedicalschool.com, $49.99 plus $7.95 shipping.
OMY Giant Poster
Big kid, big art. Try out a giant poster from OMY, like their new Black Cosmic version. Kids color in the city and the finished product glows in the dark! Made on recycled paper too for sustainable artistic expression. Other over-sized options for kids include an “Atlas” world map and “Fantastic” castle and legend scene with 150 decorative stickers apiece.
Available at us.omy-maison.com $19-$23.
Disney Doorable Multi Peek
There are new mini figures on the block! And they are 78 of your preschooler’s favorite Disney characters! Disney Doorables from Moose Toys, along with this Multi Peek magical mystery door package, will keep little hands entertained and little minds wondering what’s in store behind the next door.
Available at amazon.com, $10.88 (figures are $3.99 each).
Wild Things Blanket
Unicorn popularity sure didn’t slow down in 2018, and the folks at Fin Fun have an adorable new addition to share with the latest Wild Things Blanket. Sporting a hood, horn and hooves that double as pockets, kids will love staying warm and cozy with this unicorn blanket. Youth sizes start at four and up.
Available at finfunmermaid.com, $35. (DIRECT PURCHASE LINK AVAILABLE MID-LATE OCTOBER)
Brand new from Educational Insights, Hugo isn’t mom or dad’s hungry hippo. This “Munchy Memory Game” involves feeding Hugo and then remembering what he ate. Each time he closes his mouth, one of 18 pieces is missing, be it a bone or boot. If you remember, shout it out! Then press Barry the Bird to pop out the next munchy. Designed for ages four to seven.
Available at educationalinsights.com, $21.99.
Ryan’s World Giant Mystery Egg
Take YouTube sensation Ryan ToysReview, mix in the unwrapping trend taking kids toys by storm, and throw in the current appetite for mystery gifts, and you get Ryan’s World Giant Mystery Egg. We also included Ryan ToysReview in our roundup of YouTube channels you can trust!
Available at walmart.com, $39.99.
— Jennifer Massoni Pardini
Editor’s Note: At the time of publication, all items were available for purchase.
All images courtesy retailers.