Find the Perfect Kids’ Gifts This Holiday Season

It can be difficult to know what to buy kids! Follow this children’s toy guide, and buy the best presents this year

As the holiday season approaches, everyone strives to find the perfect gifts for their loved ones.  Many people enjoy seeing the look on the recipients’ faces after they have received a gift that was chosen just for them. However, before that joy occurs, there can be a lot of stress in finding that special gift.

And, when it comes to children, the pressure is on because you have to find safe, age-appropriate gifts that they’ll love.

But it can be difficult to know what to buy kids! According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), “you should always make sure there are no thermal or shock hazards in electrical toys and look for any toxic materials in or on toys.”

If you are struggling with determining how to buy toys, the CPSC has helpful rules to abide by when shopping. Here is your guide to finding the perfect gift this year—no matter how old your child is.

For under age 3

First, look at the packaging because that will indicate if a toy is inappropriate for children under 3. You should look for extremely durable toys that can withstand repetitive and potentially aggressive use. Also look for small parts that could be swallowed or create a choking hazard for small children. Look for toys that have parts with a length and width greater than 2 inches.

Here are the types of toys you should look for:

  • Arts and crafts materials, such as large crayons and clay
  • Sports equipment, such as pool toys and bouncy balls
  • Outdoor and gym equipment, such as tunnels for crawling

For ages 3-6

The biggest concern, when looking at toys for children in this age group, is choking hazards. For all toys and games for children from 3 to 6, read any labeled choking hazards and be mindful of small game pieces, such as marbles.

Here are the types of toys you should look for:

  • Puzzles, such as the large foam ones
  • Ride-on toys, such as a tricycle or small bicycle
  • Outdoor and gym equipment, such as a swingset

For ages 7-8

When shopping for gifts for children under 8 years old, be mindful of electronically operated toys that can heat up. The CPSC discourages buying these gifts. You also should avoid toys that have sharp edges because children could hurt themselves.

Here are the types of toys you should look for:

  • Arts and visual equipment, such as an electronic handheld devices for learning
  • Games, such as a matching card game
  • Books, such as simple stories and complex pop-up books

Always check the warning and safety labels on toys, especially when purchasing for younger children. Become familiar with all toy parts, including potential choking hazards.