Over the years, I’ve tried to provide a balanced variety of holiday gifts for my children, including mind-stimulating games and books. A simple “formula” that I found helpful was to find gifts that represented something educational, musical, athletic, or for the outdoors, and balance those with gifts just for fun—which may have included the plastic, battery-operated toy that they really, really wanted!
My children are now teenagers, but I have personally purchased the Evan-Moor books listed below for young nieces, nephews, and friends – and can highly recommend them. Plus, all of these activity books and flashcards are under $10.00 each!
Educational gift ideas based on Evan-Moor’s at-home enrichment books and flashcards:
The Never-Bored Kid Books 1 and 2, Ages 4–9
This is my top gift pick for young children for an all-around educational gift that is also entertaining. Each full-color book provides mazes, riddles, hidden pictures, things to cut out, dot-to-dots, and other engaging, age-appropriate activities. 144–160 full-color pages.
Gift idea: Wrap the book up with new art supplies that are useful for the activities in the book, such as scissors, glue stick, colored pencils, or crayons.
Learning Line activity books and Flashcards, Grades PreK–2
Learning Line books: These colorful activity books provide little learners practice of essential reading and math skills with a variety of activities. Each book focuses on a specific skill such as sequencing, reading sight words, counting, and telling time. 32 full-color pages.
Flashcards: Each flashcard set provides sturdy, colorful cards that practice basic reading and math skills, as well as ideas for games to use with the cards. As a bonus, each set provides a unique link to corresponding online timed tests for interactive practice! 56 cards.
Gift idea: Pair an activity book with a corresponding flashcard set, or use as a stocking stuffer! Activity books can be rolled to fit into a stocking.
At-Home Tutor, Grades PreK–2
These books are ideal for providing young children with basic skill practice in fun, engaging activities. Each book covers math or reading/language skills that children learn in the classroom in a colorful and inviting format. 96 full-color pages.
Gift idea: Wrap up math books with a set of math counters or manipulatives—marbles, counting bears, or a traditional wooden abacus. For the reading and language activity books, add a new pen/pencil case with fresh pencils and pens to complete the activities.
Skill Sharpeners: Science, Grades PreK–6
This new series provides interesting reading selections on grade-appropriate science topics with follow-up activities and hands-on projects. 144 full-color pages.
Gift idea: You can use a topic covered in the book and provide a related science kit or simple supplies for a hands-on project, such as magnet sets.
Gift idea: Wrap up the activity book with a new novel or storybook, a book of poems, a journal, or a game that involves reading or spelling, such as Scrabble Junior, Bananagrams, or Clue.
Skill Sharpeners: Math, Grades PreK–6
Each title covers important grade-level math skills practice and includes test practice in a non-intimidating activity book format. 144 full-color pages.
Gift idea: Add age-appropriate games that involve math skills or counting, such as Uno, Qwirkle, Shut the Box (dice game), Dominoes, or Sudoku.
Other helpful sources:
- This blogger provides a comprehensive list of top learning toys for building STEM skills.
- Need an idea for a classic book to give a child? See this list of 100 great children’s books compiled by children’s librarians at The New York Public Library.
- See all of the Evan-Moor at-home enrichment resources on this Pinterest board: Educational Gifts for Children.
Theresa Wooler has more than 10 years’ experience in K–6 classrooms as a parent volunteer and homeschool educator, has taught high school English, and is currently involved in education through Evan-Moor’s marketing communications team.