If you’re a parent of a toddler or preschooler, you probably already know that holiday gift-giving can be… a lot. Here are some gift ideas that are guaranteed to please with an emphasis on supporting local businesses, simplicity, engagement, and/or sustainable production.
Sensory Bins/Kits ~$25 – 40
Marissa’s kids absolutely love these “calm down bins.” There are a variety of different themes, and each kit comes with hands-on, engaging activities that keep kids engrossed for hours. *Supports small business
Huddy Buddies Slippers ~ $32
These handmade slippers have a wool exterior, washable faux suede base, and fur lining on the inside. They are snuggly, adorable, and machine washable. *Get 10% off your cart with the code lucies10. (Psst: Mekaila also makes these for adults!) *Supports small business
This beautiful wooden activity center has four different stations that will keep kiddos busy! Note: requires assembly.
*Supports small business
A Screen-free Story Player
*Supports small business
This storyteller set offers a screen-free way for kids to listen with headphones. Plus, they can select their own story elements (kids seriously love this part!).
Yoto Player ~$99
This smart speaker designed for kids reads story cards aloud — you just insert the card and play. Choose from “pre-made” story cards or design your own!
This ship is seriously exciting: it has a cannon that flashes and booms, treasure that glows, realistic flags and sails, and room above and below deck for all kinds of adventures. (Note: there are small pieces — best for the pre-K crowd.)
TOMS Kids Shoes ~$41
These are easy for kids to put on and take off, have decent traction on the sole, and TOMS donates 1/3 of its profits, so you can feel good about that, too.
Zen Pig: Where You’ll Find Love, Mark Brown, illustrated by Amy Brown ~$9
An adorable story about a pig who helps a little chick discover love. Zen indeed.
When you buy Zen Pig, you also purchase enough water for someone in need for an entire year.
Wooden Balance Board ~$49
These things have a million different uses. I promise your kid will come up with some that will surprise you. And we love its simple aesthetic — it doesn’t scream “KID.” *Supports small business
This playful guitar comes with flash cards to help teach kids how to get started learning notes, and it’s sourced from wood from sustainably-managed forests. *Supports small business
A sustainable, eco-friendly take on the Etch-A-Sketch, this drawing board also comes with four magnetic shapes for tracing and an easy-carry handle. *Supports small business
IMO, books are always an amazing gift for young children. Check out more of our favorite books for toddlers here, and early chapter books to read aloud with pre-K children here.
A Balance Bike
Balance bikes are the best! They allow the youngest of kids to ride along without training wheels, which encourages quick learning on a real 2-wheeled bike.
Strider Balance Bike ~$109
The Strider bike is a classic — the original best starter for tots!
A step up….
Woom Balance Bike ~$199
The Woom comes with handle brakes, which is a nice feature (you’ll only come to appreciate this when you make the transition to a “real” bike and your kid insists that slamming into the car is the brake).
Happy holidays! Hope you found a special gift or maybe just some inspiration. See also: our 2019 gift list for toddlers and preschoolers.
Also check out our multiples gift guide for the twins on your list. Cheers!