Photo Courtesy of Creative Commons Each year, the TLI team puts together a list of…
TLI staff members spend a lot of time thinking about what helps kids learn so naturally, we’re always ready to gab about the best holiday gifts for learning. Here are a few of the things we’re buying for the kids in our lives
- Gifts For the Budding Scientist
Science gifts are all about getting kids to observe the natural world. To offer tools for exploration, put together a simple nature box with an unbreakable magnifying glass, a kid-sized insect net, or a simple flower pressing kit. For an entirely whimsical gift, order acorn cap candles for just $10 or see if you can make your own.
A subscription to Ranger Rick, a kid’s nature magazine published by The National Wildlife Federation, is a favorite gift for Chief of Staff Marissa King. The magazine is packed with great animal photos, snippets of information, and a strong environmental message. For older kids, Executive Director and former science teacher Jo Lein likes Britannica’s virtual reality experiences . Gifts for Pretend Play
2. Gifts for Pretend Play
To get the kids in your life developing new skills and vocabulary through pretend play, add a few wooden toys to your holiday gifting. Executive Director Jo Lein likes the themed toys from Melissa and Doug for toddlers to pre-kindergarten age children. Her current favorite is the usable cleaning set with it’s own storage rack.
- Gifts for the Little Builder
For hours of building fun and endless geometry experimentation, Director of Leader Programs Nina Fiterman-Blue suggests Magna-tiles, a pricey but long-lasting gift for kids of all ages. For a wooden building options, try Haba blocks ball tracks or castle theme blocks. For fort building, grab a set of Waldorf Clips to easily hold blankets and fabric in place while building motor skills.
- Gifts for the Budding Artist
Nina Fitzerman-Blue, Director of Leader Programs, likes to keep it classic with paint or chalk. For an art teacher-approved gift, check out 3-in-1 Woody sets that act like wax crayons, watercolors, and window paints in one package. Even older kids will love the zen-like quality of Buddha boards that just require water to paint and disappear a few minutes later.
- Gifts for Little Readers
Books are always an appropriate gift–any age, any interest, anytime! Nina Fitzerman-Blue recommends the Dahl collection for ages 7-9. For more ideas, get in touch with your local bookstore (we love Fulton Street and Magic City Books here in Tulsa) or look for book round-up lists based on topic.