Gifts For Kids 11 And Up

If you have tweens or teens on your holiday list this year, consider buying gifts that encourage mental and physical activity. Products that require cooperation, learning, and exploration definitely beat items that will wind up sitting on a shelf or in a drawer.

Disclaimer: Just so you know, if you order an item through one of our posts, we may get a small share of the sale.

Disclaimer: Just so you know, if you order an item through one of our posts, we may get a small share of the sale.

Get bodies moving and the thinking gears going by giving these great gifts. Best of all, you can bond with your special buddy as you both master new skills.

1. Inspire young photographers to explore and create with this awesome blend of retro and new.

The FujiFilm Instax teaches beginners how to take great photos with easy-to-understand settings. Photos print out immediately so friends can share instant keepsakes. Kids can use the macro lens attachment for extreme close ups of pets, flowers, or whatever else deserves a closer look. The selfie mirror helps capture the perfect pose without any wasted film. This camera is as fun as any toy, but also teaches photography skills and creates unforgettable photos.

2. Put your favorite flight-enthusiast in the pilot seat of a drone.

The Sky Viper is one of the easiest-to-control and most versatile drones on the market. It can perform barrel rolls and flips with the touch of a button. However, the most innovative feature is the headset that holds a smartphone and allows the operator to see from the drone’s point of view. The drone’s camera can capture and stream video in 720p high definition. This state-of-the-art gadget is worth the price for its unique first-person-view function alone. Its HD camera makes it even more of a bargain.

3. This truly creative gift allows for an infinite array of personalized cosmetics.

The Make Your Own Nail Polish Kit comes with eight colors that can be combined to make any shade you can imagine. The set comes with funnels and blending tools, along with simple instructions for making the custom polish. All polishes are free of toluene, formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate, and camphor, making them safe for everyone. DIY nail polish is a perfect accessory for a girls’ night in that blends fashion and creativity.

4. Plant the seed for gardening in someone’s soul.

The Grow N’ Glow Terrarium comes with everything a young botanist needs to create a whole new world on their desktop. The set includes a mason jar, potting mix, organic chia and wheatgrass seeds, sand, river stones, and garden figurines. Kids can grow two full life cycles of plants in their own tiny ecosystem. Seeds start growing in as little as three to four days and glow-in-the-dark stickers make the terrarium look magical at night.

5. The telephone game finally has an update, and it’s fun for the whole family.

Telestrations mixes the telephone game (you know, where one person whispers a phrase to the next person, and little misinterpretations stack up, changing the meaning of the original message entirely) with Pictionary. The first drawer reads a card and illustrates the phrase. The next person looks at that drawing and tries to guess the original phrase. The next player gets to illustrate the new phrase, and so on. When all of the drawings and phrases have been passed around, it’s time to look at how the original phrase has morphed in the course of the round. The creativity and absurdity involved in this spin on a classic will keep the whole family laughing hysterically.

6. Bring the excitement of a basketball court or arcade into your basement.

These Double Shot Arcade Hoops let future Steph Currys and Maya Moores practice rain or shine. Face off against friends or siblings and see who can rack up the most points. The rims are adjustable from 82 to 90 inches, and an infrared optical sensor keeps score so there are no disputes over who got what. The set comes with seven basketballs, a pump, and a needle to ensure young athletes can get their game on any time.

7. Equip them to creatively document memories and experiences with loved ones.

The It’s My Life Scrapbook Kit from Creativity for Kids has everything someone needs to create a one-of-a-kind scrapbook. A 9-inch square, spiral-bound notebook with 16 pages allows young archivists to preserve memorable moments in style. The set comes with over 200 stickers, rhinestones, a stencil, and other decorative materials. With over 32 layouts, there’s plenty of room for photos, letters, and drawings to document a young person’s life.

8. Give a heavy-duty, HD camera for a lot less than you’d think.

The GoPro HERO5 takes 4K video and 10 megapixel photos in just about any environment. Users can take it underwater or down a mountain, and this little gadget will just keep filming. The HERO5 is ideal for young users because of its limited menu options. After briefly learning the settings, novice photographers can begin exploring and creating with stunning results.

9. Combine style and substance for the music lover in your life.

Water Dancing speakers from SoundSOUL provide a mesmerizing visual while pumping out crisp audio. Colored LED lights look dazzling as fountains of water bubble across them. Speakers plug into a computer or phone via a standard 3.5 mm connection port. The relaxing and meditative visual will provide the perfect accompaniment to their favorite playlist.

10. Gift a fun experience and an adorable finished product in one.

This bracelet kit from Melissa & Doug provides a fun activity to do while spending quality, screen-free time with a young relative or friend. The instructions are easy-to-complete, kid-friendly, and result in elegant jewelry. Have fun making design choices while you craft unique bracelets for yourself or others. This kit is great for creative young fashion or art lovers.

11. In a similar vein, here’s another option for future fashion designers.

The Fashion Studio from Creativity for Kids comes with everything that a future Donatella Versace needs to get started. The set has a dress mannequin, fabric, sketchbook, trims, ribbons, and much more. Like a real designer, kids will create sketches and bring them to life with a real sewing kit. Start a young designer on the path to Project Runway with this educational and entertaining pick.

12. Toys have become incredibly sophisticated since we were kids.

The Razor Hovertrax 2.0 is the smartest self-balancing electric scooter on the market. This little contraption can maintain speeds up to 8 miles per hour for up to 60 minutes. With a weight limit of 220 pounds, even adults can try this addictive toy. New features on the Hovertrax 2.0 include an LED light-bar display, fender bumpers, a battery-power indicator, and a special riding mode for training.

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