I can’t believe I’m already thinking about Christmas! And boy do I have lots of gifts for you this year! Subscribe to my emails to make sure you don’t miss a thing; I’ll be running a series of gift guides to help you choose the perfect gift for just about everyone. First up is my gift guide of Educational Gifts Kids Will Love.
Please note that affiliate links are used in this post.
We reviewed ABCmouse.com a few years back and my kids loved it (you can read our review here). ABCmouse.com has grown since then and now covers ages 2 – 7 across 8 levels with over 650 lessons and more than 7,000 individual learning activities! Try it out FREE for 30 days!
Kids will love to ‘play’ with ABCmouse.com and parents will love that their young children are learning. I found this program to be the perfect thing for Kallista to work on while I was helping Tristan with hands-on learning.
Sign up for your free 30-day trial to get acquainted with it.
You can purchase a subscription (or free trial) to ABCmouse. com here.
Photo Adventures For Kids
If your child has an interest in photography, Photo Adventure For Kids will be perfect for them. Whether they will receive a new camera as a gift, already have one, or will use your hand-me-down, this children’s photography guide will teach them how to frame their shot (there’s even a cardboard frame included for some of the assignments), how to use the manual settings (yes, some of us adults can also learn a lot from this book!), and learn how to crop in different ways to get the picture you want.
This 140 page book by Anne-Laure Jacquart is packed full of colourful pictures and advice to get kids feeling confident with their camera and ready to take on the world. I love to see what life looks like from 3 feet tall and what’s important to my children.
My children love to take photos, and this guide is helping them to take much better photos! Now they’re looking for textures, angles, and detail. It won’t be long before they’ll be joining me at my camera club meetings.
My children have been learning some French this autumn, but it isn’t easy to expose them to the language here. What a beautiful coincidence it was when a fellow home educator in France contacted us to see what we thought about her audiobooks which encourage children to learn French through the life of a little French girl named Amélie.
Kim Hoffmeister and James Hoffmeister have done a really lovely job with these stories. They’re interesting and children will be caught up in Amelié’s mishaps. With French vocabulary woven throughout the English stories children will recognise (or learn) some of the words they’ve been working on. These stories are good for quiet time, to have on while children are playing, and at bedtime.
Amelie and the chocolates is very cute and you can picture a young child sneaking chocolates one by one thinking that no one will notice! This story introduces the numbers 1-10 in French (from Amelie Stories Volume I). My son is in the midst of losing teeth while his little sister is impatient to start losing hers, so they quite enjoyed Amelie Loses a Tooth (Amelie and The Ferry).
You can listen to a story free by visiting Amélie Stories – introducing simple French vocabulary. Learn and have fun on Facebook and checking out the post at the top of the page. If you like what you hear, you can purchase more stories on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk.
You can follow Kim through her blog, Confused In France or on Facebook.
Let’s Bake: A Step by Step Introduction
Children love to get into the kitchen and bake – but most cookbooks aren’t made for kids. With Let’s Bake, children are encouraged to get creative all on their own (with a little help from adults for using the oven).
The recipes aren’t ‘kidified’; they are the real thing, and the photos of the finished product look good enough for The Great British Bake Off (soon my children will be putting my baking to shame, I’m sure). The ingredients and photo of the finished product take up a 2-page spread, and on the following spread the recipes instructions are both in type and illustrated forms – making it easy to follow along.
Some of the recipes your children will enjoy baking are:
- Cheesecake in a Glass
- Shortcrust Cookies
- Mug Cake
- Hedgehog Cake
This book would make a wonderful gift for a budding baker; wrap it up in a mixing bowl and a few ingredients and cover it with a tea towel or apron and you won’t hear “I’m bored” during the long winter days!
Pick And Draw
You know we love the Pick and Draw game! If I recall, The Big Book of Pick And Draw was the first item we ever reviewed here at Castle View Academy (although at the time we were Crystal’s Tiny Treasures). You can see our reviews here and here.
This year we packed up our PAD game cards and took them on the road with us camping. They’re small and all you need to go with the cards is paper and a pencil. They’re perfect for travel, a stocking stuffer, or to take out when the grandkids visit.
You can purchase Pick And Draw here.
My Body: Explained and Illustrated
- Do your kids ever ask you about how their body works?
- How do muscles work?
- How can I see?
- Why does my heart beat?
- How do broken bones mend?
- How do I pee?
Kids are full of questions and we don’t always have all of the answers. My Body is 48 pages long and filled with illustrations and explanations to help satisfy inquisitive young minds.
What I enjoy about this book is that it gives solid information, it doesn’t talk down to kids, and it gives just enough information to answer questions without becoming dry. It leaves children wanting to learn more, which is just how a book should be.
There are also two pages that give the basics of reproduction in a straight-forward yet and non-graphic way. My body is recommended for ages 8 and up and is a great book for homeschoolers or those who have curious children.
That’s What You Think! A Mind-Boggling Guide to the Brain
That’s What You Think! by Jan von Holleben, Michael Madeja, and Katja Naie is a wonderful book for curious kids! Kids asked the experts 80 questions and they’re all answered in this book:
- How fast can you think?
- How many things can you think about at once?
- Where do your memories go if you lose your memory?
- Does a brain have feelings?
- Where does our soul live?
- Why does food taste bad when I’ve got a cold?
- Can people who research the brain read minds?
Who wouldn’t want to know what the answers are? This 184 page book is filled with full-colour photographs and fun images to make the subject matter even more interesting. Kids (and parents) will love to pick this title up and read through a question now and again, or take it to bed and read it in a few sessions.
That’s what you think! is aimed at children of 11 and over, but slightly younger children will also have a lot of fun learning interesting facts.
50+ Gift Guide For Kids of All Ages
To give you even more great gift ideas this season, some of my friends from the Kid Blogger Network have come together to share our gift guides with you. Hop on over to KC Edventures and have a look! The guides are divided by interest and by age for convenience.