Best Gift Ideas for Preschoolers: A Holiday Gift Guide


Shopping for Christmas presents for young children can be tough, but this holiday gift guide featuring 15 of the best gift ideas for preschoolers ought to help!

Christmas shopping can be a challenge for children ages 3-5. Today we’re sharing a holiday gift guide with 15 of the best gifts for preschoolers to help give you a few ideas.

This list of the best gift ideas for preschoolers will help you shop high quality presents your children will love and play with over and over again.

Even with young children at home, I find it a challenge to know what to get them for holiday and birthday presents. Kent and I limit ourselves to only giving each of our boys four gifts at Christmas  – something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read. By early November, the boys’ grandparents, aunts, uncles and other loved ones start asking what the kids would like for Christmas. I never know what to tell them.

It seems like the kids are blessed with an abundance of gifts every year. Some presents hardly get used, but other gifts are big hits that the boys love, love, LOVE! I thought it might help you with your holiday shopping if I shared 15 of the best gifts the boys have received. These are the toys and gifts that get played with all the time. Many are even still actively used by our oldest who’s now in early elementary school.

15 of the Best Gift Ideas for Preschoolers

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If you’re shopping for a boy or girl ages 2-6, you’re bound to find something they’ll love on this list of the best gift ideas for preschoolers. I’ve organized it by big gifts as well as gifts under $50 and under $25, so there are ideas to fit any budget.

15 Christmas gifts that preschool kids will love

Big Gift Ideas

1. Radio Flyer 4-in-1 Stroll ‘N Trike – We gave this tricycle to our youngest son when he was a year old. We love how it has grown with him. That first summer I pushed him around in it while he was strapped in with a five point harness. He thought he was big stuff just like his older brother. This past summer we removed all the “baby” features and now he races around on it in the driveway like a big boy trike. It’s awesome.

2. Kidkraft Fire Station Set – Kids love to act out different scenes that they see in real life. This fire station is like a gender neutral doll house. The one we have is actually the slightly larger KidKraft Deluxe Fire Rescue Set. Unfortunately it has been discontinued by the manufacturer, but you can still find several available online.

3. Wooden Kitchen Set, Sink, and Fridge – My boys enjoy mimicking the activities they see in real life, like mom or dad cooking in the kitchen. Many kitchen sets are pink and girly, but this one works great for girls or boys. It’s wooden and neutral colored. The one we have from PlanToys is an older set with a stove, refrigerator and sink. We bought our set five years ago, so it’s no longer available. (By the way, if you’re outfitting the kitchen with toy food and cooking utensils I think this wooden tea set from Plan Toys is ADORABLE for less than $30!)

4. Kidkraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table – When our oldest son was a baby, we lived in Germany for a few months and started collecting Brio trains for him. We wanted to expand his set and give him a dedicated place where he could set up the trains and leave them for days on end. This Kidkraft Waterfall Mountain Train Set and Table integrates perfectly with the Brio train stuff we already had PLUS I love how there’s built in storage underneath it.

5. Kidkraft Farmhouse Table and Chairs – We seriously use this little table and chair set ALL THE TIME. It’s great for coloring in coloring books, doing puzzles, playing games and other activities in our playroom. When the boys were really little we had it right in the living room so the natural oak finish made it blend in well with adult furniture. I’ve also seen this table set in espresso and pecan finishes too.

Creative and fun gift ideas for preschoolers

Best Gift Ideas for Preschoolers Under $50

6. TinkerToy Super Building Set – We first learned about Wedgits when our oldest son was in preschool, but sadly they aren’t available anymore. He enjoyed playing with them there so his grandparents got him a set. Now his younger brother loves playing with them just as much. Another great building set is TinkerToy. This classic STEM toy will encourage engineering creativity and interactive fun.

7. John Deere Sit and Scoot Tractor – Our younger son is a huge fan of tractors. He even had a John Deere tractor birthday cake a few years ago. It was no surprise then that two different people got him the John Deere Sit and Scoot Tractor. We kept both tractors and our two boys love to drive them around and around our basement on all kinds of adventures.

8. Learning Resources Gears – If your child is mechanically inclined at all, this is THE gift for him or her. The boys configure these Gears in all sorts of different ways and then turn the crank as fast as they possibly can. Who am I kidding? I love to play with them too.

9. Marble Genius Marble Run – Our oldest son saw this Marble Run in a magazine and put it at the top of his wish list one year. It’s been great fun ever since. I wouldn’t recommend it for children under three though since the marbles are a choking hazard.

10. High Five Magazine Subscription – This magazine is like the gift that keeps on giving. The boys get so excited when a new issue comes in the mail each month. They also  have subscriptions to Highlights Magazine and National Geographic Kids which the boys really enjoy now that they’re getting older.

The perfect preschool wish list to send to grandparents

Best Gift Ideas for Preschoolers Under $25

11. uKloo Early Reader Treasure Hunt Game – This game is so fun. You hide the cards around the house then the kids read the clue cards to go from one clue to the next to locate a surprise at the end. It helps kids learn to sight read and understand basic sentence structure.

12. Kidz Gear Wired Headphones For Kids – An iPad, iPod Touch, a portable DVD player or another electronic device loaded with games and movies are great for entertaining children. For both our boys we have Kidz Gear Wired Headphones because they’re designed to fit small children and have a small cable to limit the volume and protect precious little ears.

13. Melissa & Doug Upper & Lower Case Alphabet Puzzle – Both our boys have learned the letters of the alphabet playing with this puzzle. It’s great that it has both the upper and lower case letters. It’s also helpful that there’s a photo of something that starts with that letter underneath each letter on the board.

14. Ravensburger Puzzles – The boys and I have a lot of fun putting puzzles together. The ones from Ravensburger are especially high quality. The boys favorites are this Construction Crowd Puzzle and the Railway Station Puzzle.

15. LeapFrog My Own Leaptop – Kent and I both enjoy technology so it’s no surprise that our boys do too. This toy makes them feel like they’re working on a computer just like mommy and daddy. The Leaptop has also been a big help with letter and number recognition.

While you’re here be sure to check out other holiday ideas

Originally published November 2016. Updated November 2020.

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