The best gift parents can give to their children is spending a lot of time with them, says Dr. Roberta Golinkoff, professor of psychology at the University of Delaware and one of our regular experts, who helped us find the best toys for 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, and 4-year-olds. She and her partner and Dr. Kathy Hirsch-Pasek, another expert we often refer to as well, definitely know what they are talking about when it comes to raising creative and successful children and their opinion is very authoritative for us. As a proof, it would be fair to mention that Hirsch-Pasek’s son has recently won the Tony award for writing the Best Original Score for Dear Evan Hansen.
According to Dr. George Sachs, a child psychologist and founder of the Sachs Center in Manhattan, children at the age of five come to control their emotions, therefore, they are prepared much better for working through problems and conflicts. Keeping all these facts in mind, we have asked Dr. Golinkoff and Dr. Sachs to help us find the best gifts for 5-year-olds.
Also, check out our gift suggestions for kids of different age groups, including 1-year-olds, 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, 4-year-olds, 6-year-olds, 7-year-olds, 8-year-olds, 9-year-olds, 10-year-olds, and 11-year-olds.
Just in case you are searching for holidays toys, we have talked to specialists to indicate the 2018’s best items for you. So, take a look at the top kid’s toys to buy before they sell out. In addition, here you can find all of the Strategist’s holiday gift offers.
Almost every toy, suggested by Lego, is mega popular. This kit, which our experts recommend for your 5-year-old child, includes bricks, as well as some gears. These gears can be applied for creating several rotating objects like sunflowers that spin. Even though the creative freestyle building is the thing you should always encourage, Sachs recommends offering kids an option with following the instructions. This Lego set comes with a bright and colorful book of ideas, even if your kids will end up not using it.
Dr. Golinkoff agrees that 5 years of age is about a time when children can start playing and experimenting with various Lego kits, and their fine motor skills are almost ready for more complicated and specialized stuff. So, this 3 in 1 Ocean Explorer set might be a good choice for them.
This die-cut wooden house kit is a good selection if you are looking for some a little more “do it yourself” stuff. It even includes some minimalistic toy furniture that your child can paint by himself. This toy is also good for various pretend games. As Dr. Golinkoff says, anything that stimulates imagination and creativity is great. Miniature stuff, like this dollhouse, will most likely encourage to play role games, which are essential for imagination and creativity development. Your kid can play with it alone or with his pals and family.
As Dr. Golinkoff says, for playing family role-games you have to make sure that toys you purchase include statuettes that represent family members of different ages: mother, father, grandma, grandpa, and, of course, children. For the advancing of creativity and content, any types of imaginative role-play will work. While playing with peers, your children will often argue with them, will make cases, as well. For example, about the kind of things boys and girl can or cannot do. One of them might state, “You cannot be a doctor, because only boys can be doctors”, even though, this kid’s mother may be a doctor. That’s the way kids learn. It’s going according to the rules and roles of childhood. This Lego set features a variety of professions like the mail carrier, veterinarian, farmer, female drummer, as well as firefighter, barber, and others.
After they are done building things in miniature, your children will definitely enjoy creating real-size constructions they can have fun with. As Dr. Sachs believes, this freestyle build fort, being pretty instructive, is a great choice and 5-year-olds will find it very cool. “Just add the bed sheets and have an endless fun”, that is what the sign on the package says.
Dr. Sachs says that children just go crazy over this Stomp Rocket toy. This toy, which relies on children’s stomping power to launch foam rocket in the air on the height of 200 feet, may seem too simple, but it is deceptive feeling. Being very educational, it teaches kids to understand the concepts of gravity, force, trajectory, and the power of air resistance.
5-year-old children continue advancing fine motor skills, Dr. Sachs believes. This is the age kids really start to learn how to write and hold a pen or pencil. By helping them to improve fine motor skills starting from this age, parents will get them ready for writing in kindergarten and in the beginning school. This set of twistable colored crayons, which are the step up from regular crayons, is a perfect choice and encouragement for more detailed drawing and writing.
Try this set of hollow beads to stimulate more refined motor skills. Kids can put these beads on pegboards using their fingers or tweezer. You can help them melt these beads by means of iron for creating a beautiful piece of art. No doubt, these beads are fun, being very creative at the same time. At this age your children are old enough, so they are definitely not going to swallow small pieces, therefore, you do not have to worry about that, Dr. Sachs says and adds that his grandchildren have plenty of fun with them.
Classic games are always a great and appropriate choice, so do not ignore them. This “Chutes and Ladders” board game from Connect Four is perfect for pre-readers. Dr. Golinkoff believes that in general board games are interesting and exciting for any age group. While playing them your kid has to follow certain rules. Think about what is happening: you have to talk, you have to count, and you have to be nice. There isn’t much opportunity for creativity. However, as your kids get older, they realize that they can make up their own rules.
Dr. Golinkoff loves books, saying they are always amazing and fabulous. Take a look at this instant classics from the creators of Rossie Revere, Engineer, one of our best gift recommendations for 4-year-olds. This book tells a story of an insatiably curious girl, whose name is Ada Twist. She does many ambitious scientific experiments that constantly cause some trouble to her parents. If you are searching for more feminist reading appropriate for this age group, check out this list of feminist children books.
If your child is anxious about embarking on the entirely new experience that is entering the kindergarten – this book, written by Natasha King, is a great choice. It will help you to calm down some of those worries. Dr. Sachs says that reading this book together with the parent or caregiver will bring kids to better understanding and talking through sadness or being scared, as well as some other emotions they might be feeling.
This complete collection of texts about Winnie-the Pooh, which is illustrated, is one more book approved and recommended by Dr. Sachs.
Even though this Shel Silverstein classic book is more for parents, as Dr. Sachs says, you should definitely red it to your 5-year-old kid. Moreover, it is an essential addition to any child’s library.
Check out these walkie-talkies with three channels, the range of two miles, and build –in flashlight. It’s a perfect gift to make your children believe they are on an adventure. Walkie-talkie really encourages communication, collaboration, as well as creativity, says Dr. Golinkoff. Kids get involved in their own imaginary world, and they need to share with their pals some “inside information”, things only they and their friends would understand. And even though kids love cell phones and different apps, this toy can be really fun for them.
Paired with the walkie-talkie, this camera will give your child a feeling of being a real detective, armed with the instant detective kit for better exploring the surrounding world. Making their owl kids movies is a great idea, says Dr. Golinkoff, and this camera is the first step to this. Since kids might need to learn how to read first, making movies may seem to be a little early for them. However, this kid’s camera is a great choice for your child. You can teach them how to use it and this interaction will be real fun for them.
Dr. Golinkoff reminds us not to forget about physical activities. Jump rope is a classic, and it’s a real fun, especially when your child is playing with other kids.
Even though this bouncing rubber ball may seem too simple, do not let this simplicity fool you. As Golinkoff states, there are lots of possibilities. You can do all kinds of things with this small pink ball. Many of us played this ball for a long time when we were children. And now, as parents, we can teach our children to play these games too. In case you do not know any of them – check them up on YouTube. Your kids then can teach their friends, which is cool and so much fun.
Well, it’s time to try a bicycle. To learn balance parents can try a balance bike with no pedals, or they can just take off pedals from an existing bike. They can put them back afterwards to continue learning how to ride.