Educational Holiday Gift Guide 2009

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Click for Educational Holiday Gift Guide

The holidays, the holidays.  I know the grandparents have the toys covered (and then some,) I try to keep my gifts on the educational side.   Here are my recommendations for great educational gifts.  I think you’ll find inspired ideas for your kids from travel ideas to science experiments, these are fun, educational gifts  in all categories that any child will love.

Click here to get Imagination Soup’s Educational  Holiday Gift Guide .pdf.

Below is a glimpse of the items without pictures in the gift guide . . . The actual gift guide is much easier to read.  Download it here for free!

TRAVEL

Description

Website

My Busy Kit:  Age 3-7

Entertaining kit of activities to color and draw, play and pretend, create and construct, and discovery.  Entertainment for hours!

http://mybusykit.com

Eye Find:  Ages 4+

A seek-and-find book that comes with custom-made tools. Use them to solve the 15 different picture puzzles inside. Use the Big Eye — a magnifying glass perfect for finding tiny things but to find surprises inside a dragon’s belly or a pile of spaghetti, grab the Color Eye.

www.klutz.com

Brain Noodles Big Kit:  Age 3+

Open ended play for countless hours of “big” fun.  Each kit contains twenty five 18-inch brain noodles, fifteen 9-inch brain noodles and an idea/instruction booklet. There are 12 assorted vibrant colors.

www.kazootoys.com

 


GEOGRAPHY / HISTORY

Product Description Website
Little Passports:  Age 3-10
Each month Sam and Sofia, travel to a new country on their magical scooter.  Children receive a monthly personalized package via postal mail that includes an adventure letter, fun souvenirs (e.g., origami paper, music CDs, puzzles, and traditional country toys.)

www.littlepassports.com

Famous Figure from Ancient Times:  Age 6-12
Action figures from ancient times.  Cut, color, move and imagine you’re Julius Caesar, Aristotle and more.

www.figuresinmotion.com

Map Tangle:  Age 3-10
Kids play a Twister-like stretching game with the continents, oceans, mountains and famous locations.

www.youngexplorers.com

 

 


LITERACY:  READING AND WRITING

Product

Description

Website

Fridge Phonics:  Age 2-5
26 letters fit into the letter reader.  Hear the letter name and sound plus a song.

www.amazon.com

Tell Me a Story Cards:  Age 4–12
Each set includes 26 picture cards for children to choose and invent a story to match the pictures.  (Circus, Robot, Fairy Tale, Forest Mystery)

www.grasshopperstore.com

www.amazon.com

Tessy and Tab Reading Club:  Age 2-6
Tessy and Tab is really more than a magazine.
The Tessy & Tab Reading Club is a program for preschoolers that builds early reading skills. Delivered twice a month and includes activities, parent tools and online resources.

www.tessyandtab.com

Indoor Treasure Hunt:  Age 5+
Play an indoor Treasure Hunt.  Game includes an Explorer’s Club backpack, treasure map, treasure chest, clues, pieces of treasure and instructions.

www.uncommongoods.com

Journal Jots in a Jar:  Age 8+
Instant journaling and writing assignments, and a wealth of ideas for young writers at home. 101 unique and creative prompts start kids thinking and make writing fun.

www.freespirit.com

Take your Pix Board Book Photo Albums:  Age 1-99
Chunky board book style photo album with page notches and protective plastic covers.  Perfect for small children learning words, or older adults relearning words.

www.boardbookalbums.com

Diary of a Worm and Inst-a Worm Kit”  Age 6+
Enjoy the story Diary of a Worm then mix up a batch of instant worms!

www.stevespanglerscience.com

Imagination Soup’s Step by Step Guide to Starting a Family Blog:  All ages
Easy steps with screen shots will guide you through setting up a free family blog.  Use your blog to stay in touch with family and write frequently.  Writing ideas included.

www.imaginationsoup.net

 


MATH

Product Description Website
Learn Time, Teach Time Analog Clock:  Age 5-10
Colorful, decorative and instructional clocks that look like art and teach children the minutes.  Pick from twenty designs.  You’ll receive a fully functional hanging wall clock and a paper practice clock.

www.schonart.com

Chalk Chess:  Age 3-10
Enjoy this thinking game of mental dexterity, using beautifully crafted pieces made from black and white chalk.

www.moderntribe.com

Yummy Fun Kooking Club:  Age 5-15
Monthly recipes, surprises and letters for kids.

www.yummyfun.com

Set Game:  Age 6+
Visual perception skills.  Winner of 12 game awards  Try to form a SET® from the twelve laid face up on the table.

www.setgame.com

Tangrams In a Jar:  Age 3-10
Use geometric shapes to match images on the cards.

www.freespirit.com

Head Full of Numbers:  Age 7+
Use three custom dice with numbers 0, 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 to make equations — addition or subtraction, or multiplication and division.

www.educationallearninggames.com

Balancing Monkeys:  Age 5-10
Try to maintain the tree’s equilibrium. Kids will learn how to calculate the correct distances and numbers required to balance all the monkeys.

www.uncommongoods.com


SCIENCE

Product Description Website
Six Test Tube Experiments in a Rack:  Age 7-10
Six great science experiments each packed in a large plastic test tube. Experiment with a growing alligator, ooey gooey jelly crystals, bubbling potions, magic sand that stays dry under water, color-changing beads, polymer plants, a test tube rainbow and erupting snow!

www.stevespanglerscience.com

Solar Powered Car:  Age 4+
Learn about solar power with a car that moves in the sun.

www.stevespanglerscience.com

Color Changing Beads:  Age 4+
UV-sensitive beads.  Make bracelets, test the effectiveness of sunscreen, or experiment with color while you learn about the power of sunlight. Included is a science activity guide with lots of fun experiments with solar radiation and light.

www.stevespanglerscience.com

Your Body Puzzle:  Age 3-10
5 layer wooden puzzle which includes the nervous, digestive, muscular, skin and clothed layers, Girl or Boy available.

www.uncommongoods.com

The Force Trainer (for all Jedi Knights):  Age 7+
This wireless headset actually reads and registers your brain waves using the same technology used in EEG medical testing. A focused application of concentration will allow you to make the training sphere rise inside the tower.

http://scientificsonline.com

Plasma Ball:  Age 6+
This Nebula Plasma Ball is simply the ultimate interactive light show. Blending specially formulated inert gases, it creates a dramatic display of light inside a hand-blown glass sphere!

http://scientificsonline.com

Star Theater Pro:  Age 3-10
Home planetarium that includes a soundtrack with an audio tour to thousands of motorized rotating stars that are majestically displayed on your walls or ceiling

http://scientificsonline.com


SPANISH

Product Description Website
En Mi Casa (In My House) CD:  All Ages
Featuring catchy Spanish lyrics about common activities, this collection of original songs provides a soundtrack for a typical day, helping children learn by incorporating Spanish into their daily lives.

www.singalingo.com

Say and Stick Word Notes:  Age 3+
6 0 colorful, fun and educational repositionable notes keep useful words front and center in your casa.

www.singalingo.com


ART, DRAMA & GAMES

Product Description Website
Art gallery book, greeting cards, placemats & more:  Age 3-10
Mail your child’s art to Scribble Press and they will create an exquisite custom book featuring your child’s artistic work, a laminated placemat or greeting cards.

www.scribblepress.com

SEDARAHC (“suh-DARE-ic”):  Age 3-10
Charades in reverse.  The entire team acts and only one person guesses.

http://www.sedarahc.com

Brain Games In a Jar:  Age 6-9
101 brain teasers to challenge kids to think and learn.

www.freespirit.com


PRETEND PLAY

Product Description Website
Wooden Birthday Cake:  Age 3-5
Includes 6-slice cake, serving plate, 19 toppings, 7 candles, wooden spatula and storage box.

www.brainwavetoys.com

Joey Magnetic Dress Up:  Age 3-7
28 piece wood kit adds magnets to make this easy dress up fun and creative!

www.brainwavetoys.com

Rainbow Cape:  Age 3-10
Silk cape to spark imaginative play.

www.novanatural.com

Paper Pups:  Age 4+
Tear-resistant paper puppies — a Chihuahua and a Yorkshire terrier. Their fabulous, punch-out wardrobes include winter and summer outfits, rain gear, and even a bikini.

www.klutz.com

Deluxe Magic Set by Melissa & Doug:  Age 8+
Easy to learn tricks that are the same ones used by professional magicians; disappearing objects, multiplying coins, magic boxes, prediction tricks, a secret change bag and more.

www.kazootoys.com


MUSIC

Product Description Website
Bari Koral Family Rock Band:  Age 0-8
Singer/songwriter music with kid-friendly songs about popcorn, colors, best friends and more.

www.barikoral.com

The Jimmies Trying Funny Stuff DVD and CD:  All Ages
Rocking kid music that every parent will love, too!  This set includes a live performance CD and a DVD with videos, a performance and behind the scenes commentary.

www.gimmiejimmies.com

Gustafer Yellowgold’s Mellow Fever CD & DVD:  Age?
Songs about sun creature Gustafer range from mellow to danceable on the guitar based CD.  The hand drawn illustrated DVD shows Gustafer meeting new friends and having adventures. Parent friendly.

www.gustaferyellowgold.com

World of Music CD-ROM:  Age 5+
Compose music with the sounds of four distinct regions of the world: North America, Asia, West Africa and the Middle-East. Change the tempo, copy/paste sections, stretch selections, save composition and work on it later. Beginner and Intermediate options.

www.alfred.com (games)

Hearing  Music CD-ROM:  Age 3-10

Fun-filled games breaks musical concepts down to patterns, visuals and easy exercises. Children learn to identify different sections of music, nuances in a melody and changes in rhythm—all by listening to songs by the world’s most famous composers

www.alfred.com (games)

Special thanks to:

Imagination Soup Logo:  Gretchen Garrison Design www.gretchengarrisondesign.com

Melissa Taylor Logo:  Jason Kniser www.kniser.com

Ebook layout and publishing:  Freya Lustie www.freyaworks.com

  • Lori

    this is great Melissa. Thank you

  • http://www.freespirit.com Jenni

    Melissa,

    Thank you for including Free Spirit Publishing’s products in your Gift Guide! We are delighted to be part of such an eclectic and super-fun guide. Please call on us if we can share any more books or learning tools with you.

    Happy Holidays!
    Jenni Bowring
    bowring@freespirit.com

  • http://www.picpocketbooks.com Lynette

    Thanks for the gift guide. I really appreciate the list of thoughtful, quality toys and activities for kids. There is so much out there, so it is helpful to have suggestions. I love My Busy Kit for the holiday travel season!

  • http://kennedyandzach.blogspot.com/ colleen

    Love the ideas…really like the uncommon goods site, gonna check it out more later.

  • http://www.catalystgourmet.com kaushika

    Hi — as a busy momprenuer, I love the products in your catalog as I was looking for educational options for our son who is turning 4 soon — thanks .. look forward to shopping for some of the items later on.

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