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Holiday Gift Ideas for Smart Kids – edu|FOCUS
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Holiday Gift Ideas for Smart Kids

With the holidays right around the corner, there are still many great opportunities for parents to ensure Santa brings a learning experience to their children for the holidays. Oftentimes we get wrapped up in the gifts we see on TV – remote control flying toys, electronic devices, console games, bicycles…and the vast majority of these gifts have little, if any, educational value. So we came up with some holiday gift ideas for parents looking to add learning to the holiday schedule this year!



Student microscopes are great for middle and high school children. They offer kids an opportunity to take a deeper look into all the life that’s happening around them everyday. Kids always seem to be fascinated by the living organisms they can find in everyday streams and creeks not to mention what human skin or blood cells look like up-close. Microscopes for kids can be purchased from most stores including Walmart – who sells a great beginners kit for just $39.


If you have younger children, around the ages of 5 to 9, a stethoscope could be a really amazing gift and put your child on the path to entering a medical field. You can buy real, working stethoscopes that will allow your child to hear their own heartbeat for not a lot of money. Toys that introduce children to things that are working in their own bodies can provide a fascinating and lasting experience for them. My Little Doc is an American company that sells all kinds of doctor “stuff” to get your child’s imagination going. From lab coats to apparatus, they’re a great source for learning toys.

kids_chem_setChemistry Sets

When they get going, you’ll find it difficult to pull most middle school kids away from their first chemistry sets. Doing experiments is only part of the fun, most modern sets even include solar energy experiments and sets for young children offer fizzy, bubbly experiments that are as fun as they are educational. Chemistry sets can be a fun activity for families as well. Everyone sells these, and you can find them in various levels of difficulty.

Lego1Legos & Building Blocks

Never underestimate the power of toys that allow children to build structures and geometric shapes. Regardless of age, building blocks help encourage imagination, and build on logic and reasoning skills for children. Young children truly benefit from “stacking” objects as the activity helps improve depth perception and enhances deductive reasoning. A great toy that’s also an educational powerhouse that you should definitely give to your children.


Telescopes make fantastic gifts because they’re totally useful year-round. Telescopes are not half as expensive as they used to be, have new tools that make them easier to use, and many have online companion guides that can make searching the stars more fun and interactive. If you live in a city where light pollution is an issue, try a telescope with a larger aperture – 80mm is better than 50mm. This guide from telescopes.com can help you make an informed decision, but telescopes generally cost less then $100 these days and can provide unlimited experiences for families.

box-open-top@2xD.I.Y. Computer Kits

Do-it-yourself computer kits can be great for middle school and high school kids with an aptitude for the computer sciences. Kano makes a great beginners kit that is simple and educational at the same time. For older teens, a D.I.Y. kit from NewEgg or TigerDirect can help them learn about technology and give them the satisfaction of having built their own “rig” themselves. Instead of buying a computer that’s already put together, try a D.I.Y. kit and help your child learn about technology at the same time.

Great places to look

There are many other great gifts out there that can promote learning and help your child improve their skills. Some of our favorites include:


Young Explorers

Young Explorers








Discovery Channel Store

Discovery Channel Store


FatBrain Toys

FatBrain Toys


Are there places you like to shop for learning toys for your children?

Let us know and share with the community!

edu|FOCUS Staff
1 Comment
  • Fuzziness
    Reply December 13, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Great options, thank you! I bought my nephew a telescope for Christmas!

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