Our Chanukah gift guide wouldn’t be complete without some of the coolest toys for our kids. I have chosen five items to highlight in our 2019 guide because they are educational and fun. I can assure you that they have all scored well in reviews and would occupy most kids’ attention for hours.
The truth is, I would enjoy some time out to play too.
Forensic Science Detective’s Toolkit
Put science into kids’ hands with this forensic detective tool kit, including experiments and tips from pro detectives! Develop observation, logical thinking and problem-solving skills while exploring the scene of the crime. The kit includes every kid-friendly tool a forensics detective needs: fingerprint powder, a magnifying lens, crime scene notepad, and more. Just add a triple-A battery (not included) and you are ready to go.
A 48-page, full-color guide includes 17 engaging science experiments, from how to locate evidence and test for counterfeit currency to creating a crime scene report, complete with sketches.
Includes 33 pieces in all, a free retractable tape measure and a black light pen.
Ages 8 and up. Available at amazon.com and mindware.com for $49.95.
Melissa & Doug Created by Me! Star Fleece Quilt
Make a super-cozy quilt in no time. This kit helps you create an easy-to-make extra-large, colorful fleece blanket with no sewing involved. Just tuck the extra-wide and extra-long fringe into slots and tie single knots to put together your very own quilt.
The fabric pieces are super thick, soft and fuzzy on both sides for extra snuggling. The 40 12-inch by 12-inch pieces include fringe that’s nearly 2 inches long, making knotting fast and simple. The finished quilt is about 4 feet by 5 feet. Or put together fewer pieces to make scarves or smaller projects. Illustrated instructions and design ideas are included.
Ages 6 and up. Available at Target for $17.99
National Geographic Mega Gemstone Dig Kit
This premium science kit has it all. Dig into this Mega Gemstone Mine with the archaeological tools provided and explore naturally formed crystals and gemstones from around the world. Unearth these gemstones and add them to your rock collection. Your student will learn all about each stone and about how they are formed with the detailed learning guide included in this kit. STEM science learning just doesn’t get any better!
Science kit includes:
- Large dig brick containing 15 gemstones
- Archaeological digging tools
- 1 magnifying glass
- 16-page, full-color learning guide illustrating how gemstones are formed and mined and helping young scientists identify each specimen as it’s discovered.
Ages 8 and up. Available at amazon.com for $19.99.
Dig it Up!
Minerals & Fossils and Big Bugs
A different surprise lies inside each of these clay stones, just waiting to be discovered. With Dig It Up! Minerals & Fossils, simply chisel away the stone to excavate petrified wood, fool’s gold, amethyst, snowflake obsidian and eight other minerals and fossils. Identify and learn about each geologic discovery with an accompanying field guide to fossils and minerals.
Then experience the thrill of discovery just like a real paleontologist as you excavate 12 giant bug eggs! Simply soak the 3-inch clay egg in water and then carefully chisel away the shell to excavate the bug surprise inside. Every egg in the carton contains a different prehistoric bug model. Learn about each one in the excavation guidebook.
Each set includes a dozen individually wrapped clay stones or eggs, each with a chiseling tool and instructions. It’s a perfect activity for groups or parties.
Ages 4 and up. Available at mindware.com. You’ll receive a free excavation kit while supplies last for $41.95 (Set of two with free excavation kit).
Science Academy: Deluxe Squishy Ball Lab
Create 10 different squishy stress balls. Each squishy ball has unique scientific properties and you add your own artistic design. Explore chemical bonding in polymers while creating funky stress balls with colorful beads and glitter. And test how differences in mass, density and viscosity affect your creations!
All ingredients and supplies needed for your Deluxe Squishy Ball Lab science experiments are safe and non-toxic. The colorful, detailed guide booklet includes step-by-step instructions and safety information, plus decorating ideas.
Ages 8 and up. Available at amazon.com and mindware.com. Pricing varies from $34.95 to $41.95.