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Budget-Friendly Educational Gifts for Kids in Holiday Season

Written by: Alice Jonas;

With the holiday season in full swing, your kids are likely already busy creating their wishlists. When deciding what to buy your little ones, consider gifts that are both fun and educational. Knowing that your child is broadening their horizons and developing their mind as they enjoy their holiday goodies can be greatly rewarding as a parent. You might think an "educational" gift means spending big money on a new technological toy or gadget. In fact, there are many simple and affordable items you can purchase that kids will appreciate—and also learn something from. The following gifts teach kids valuable lessons while saving you money, sparing you the finance-related stress that many people feel around the holidays.

Inspire their inner artist with arts and crafts

Kids are full of imagination, and you can encourage their natural creativity by gifting them arts and crafts supplies. Paints, crayons, colored pencils, beading supplies—these are just a few of the inexpensive options you can choose from. Head to a local budget retailers like Walmart and check out their crafts section for inspiration; your child can learn a lot from such creative hobbies. They will finetune their attention span, improve their bilateral coordination and dexterity, and practice problem-solving as they tackle different projects. The pride that comes with finishing a one-of-a-kind art piece can also lead to greater confidence.

Get them physically active with sports gear

Exercise is good for kids' development, both mentally and physically. Breaking a sweat helps stave off anxiety and depression and also decreases the risk of issues like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems. Inspire your kid to get off the couch and get moving by gifting them their favorite athletic appear or equipment. A sports jersey featuring the name of their favorite NBA star and a basketball is one winning combo, for example. Worried about costs? Check out online deal sites like Rakuten, where you will find cashback deals and other promotional offers from reputable retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods or Macys.

Challenge their minds with books

A book is a simple and affordable way to expose a child to new worlds. A fantasy fiction book like Harry Potter can spark their imagination, for instance, while a nonfiction book can teach them about everything from the natural world to famous role models like Rosa Parks. The "Little People, Big Dreams" series inspires kids with stories about a slew of such motivational figures. Books don't have to cost much. Shop around local yard sales and second-hand shops for volumes that are gently used. Amazon also has used books for sale, which can be delivered right to your doorstep, just in time for the holidays. When you read with your little one, you are also furthering their literacy.

Find educational activities for them to participate in

Sometimes the best gifts aren’t tangible objects but experiences. Research actually shows that people get more excited about future experiences they can look forward to and that they get more value from experiences overall. Look for educational events you and your child can experience together. For example, a cooking class is a great way to teach kids about math and science, while a museum membership exposes them to historical facts.

Don’t get stressed about gifting your child the latest pricey tablet or iPhone this holiday season. The above list provides just a few options in terms of affordable yet educational goodies they will love. Your little one will have fun while also learning something—and you can rest easy knowing that they are continuing to develop and grow into a smart and thriving individual.

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