Gift ideas for big kids ages 8-12

Emily Reviews writers were sent products for inclusion in our holiday gift guide. There are affiliate links as well as Amazon affiliate links in this article.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. All opinions are our own.

Brady Street Boys | Katrina Hoover Lee

The Brady Street Boys Adventure Series features a variety of gripping and inspirational books for young readers. If you like characters with integrity, faith-filled inspiration, and enthralling plots, then you’ll adore Katrina Hoover Lee’s tales.  Featuring exciting stories and mysteries to solve; this series does NOT disappoint!  These books feature fast paced action and the kids find them to be an easy, fun read that keeps them enthralled from beginning to end.  They are thoroughly enjoying and it’s so refreshing to have integrity filled characters at the helm.


Polkoliye has a Light Up Archery Toy Set that would make a fun gift for big kids. The set includes two luminous bows, fourteen suction cup arrows, and a detachable target stand. Kids can choose to use the target as a standing target or a wall-mounted target. It is easy to carry and install. The Light Up Archery Toy Set is a fun activity for both indoors and outdoors. While the kids play, they will work on developing their hand-eye coordination, motor skills, and collaboration skills. (Note: batteries are not included.) To see the selection of products Polkoliye offers, please visit their Amazon store.

scribble books


For the kids who LOVE making art and never want to throw any of their old creations away, a Custom Hardcover Photo Book featuring all of their designs will be a wonderful gift this holiday season! Simply upload photos of the artwork and Scribble will compile them in a hardcover photo book (two size options!). No more piles of drawings or mountains of macaroni art – with Scribble, you can keep their creativity organized and commemorate their childhood milestones.

Bwine M4A1 Electric Gel Ball Blaster


The Bwine M4A1 Electric Gel Ball Blaster is a high-performance toy blaster designed for outdoor games. It offers both semi-automatic and fully-automatic firing modes, capable of reaching an effective range of 60 feet and a maximum range of 200 feet. This gel blaster is equipped with a trigger lock for safety and can sustain a continuous shooting frequency of 10 rounds per second, making it a thrilling choice for kids who enjoy active, outdoor play. The Bwine M4A1 encourages imaginative play, teamwork, and strategy among young players. Its impressive features make it a great gift for children who are fascinated by action-packed games and outdoor adventures.

Wahu Zoom Ball

Goliath Games

The kids love this two player game that has them zooming with joy!  The Zoom Ball has you grabbing a friend and challenging each other to get active as you compete to keep the ball from hitting your handles.  Fast paced, this high speed game can get super exciting and challenging.  For extra hard options, have players try standing on one foot, kneeling down, or changing arm movements – this game is a great way to build strength and balance while having fun!

Ravensburger GraviTrax PRO Vertical Starter Set

Ravensburger GraviTrax

Go vertical and raise your marble run to extreme heights with the “GraviTrax PRO Starter-Set”.  Our boys have been playing with GraviTrax for years now and have so much fun building, creating, experimenting, and playing with these top-rated marble runs.  I really like how we can continue adding sets and accessories to help provide even more ways for allowing you to create more dynamic marble runs.  Build with walls, pillars and balconies with this 153 piece set that can be attached together to form three-dimensional structures.  This STEM toy for boys and girls 8 and up, encourages experimenting with gravity, magnetism, and kinetics to propel your marble to the finish. Designed with open play in mind, the concept offers endless possibilities to design a different track every time you play.   

Gabb Wireless

Gabb Wireless

Kids grow up fast these days and with all the outside activities and events, it’s hard to keep track of them.  Thankfully, Gabb makes it easy with their kid-safe (internet free) phones and watches.  Check out the brand new Gabb Watch 3 this holiday season.  It’s a phone watch that kids love and the best-in-class kid safe smartwatch; combining the functions of a safe cell phone, a reliable GPS device, and an interactive watch.  Right now, get $25 off any Gabb device, no contract necessary using the discount code “THRIFTY” at checkout.  

  • Buy It:
  • Black Friday Deal going on NOW: 55% OFF a Gabb Phone 3 Pro or Gabb Watch + 3 months of FREE service (use discount code THRIFTY)


Tenzi has games for a wide range of ages and interests. One of their games is called Buildzi. Buildzi is a fast-stacking, nerve-racking, block-building game! Quick, grab a Buildzi block and start building. To win, you must be the first to build your tower. The game comes with 32 Buildzi blocks, 32 tower cards, and 32 block cards. There are many ways to play. Buildzi accommodates two to four players. Read Laurie’s full review on the blog for more details.

hair chalk


This Hair Magic Set from Jim&Gloria will be a huge hit this holiday season! The set features eight vibrant, dustless hair dye colors, 4 Fashionable Clip-on Colored Hair, 2 Kawaii Mermaid Brushes and 3 Shining Body Glitters. These hair chalk pens can be used individually or blend with several colors to get the fashion you wish. The faux hair can be curled and cut to the desired length to style your hair. Hair glitters will further enhance and optimize your look and make you shine! The twist up crayon Hair Chalk is washable and made from non-allergenic ingredients. It is easy to apply, quick to dry, easy to wash out with ordinary shampoo and water. The colors can last up to 3-4 days until your next wash.

lego 2k drive

2K Games

LEGO 2K Drive offers a unique blend of LEGO creativity and racing excitement, making it an ideal gift for kids. Set in the expansive world of Bricklandia, it allows players to explore various terrains, from bustling racetracks to serene waterways, while building and customizing their own LEGO vehicles. This game not only fosters imaginative play but also encourages strategic thinking and friendly competition. Whether racing against in-game characters or joining friends in multiplayer modes, it’s a perfect choice for children who love adventure, creativity, and the timeless appeal of LEGO.

Air Warriors EZ Fire Blaster

Buzz Bee Toys

My kids are obsessed with dart blasters and this Air Warriors EZ Fire Blaster is so cool!  It’s never been easier for kids (and even adults!) to unleash their inner warrior as this is a thrilling dart blaster that offers un-compromised fun and high-powered action with the new EZ Shot technology.  The EZ Pull Slam Fire feature delivers rapid-blasting action at your fingertips. With a simple, intuitive motion, you can unleash a barrage of darts on your opponents, keeping the thrill of the game alive and enticing for all ages.  The eye-catching design and colors paired with a firing mechanism that’s smooth and reliable, makes this blaster a winner.  And it shoots foam darts with impressive accuracy!  It’s easy to load and feels comfortable to hold, even during long battles.



Do you have a Christmas tradition of getting or giving new pajamas? We do! Every Christmas Eve we get a new pair of pajamas. LazyOne is the perfect place to shop for your new pajamas. They have a fun collection of pajamas for men, women, children of all ages, and Fido too! LazyOne also specializes in matching pajamas. You can choose Mommy & Me, Daddy & Me, or matching pajamas for everyone in the family. Check out the new “Most Likely To…” Christmas pajamas. They have several sayings for you to choose from and matching plaid bottoms. LazyOne’s Most Likely To… pajamas are perfect for starting a new tradition or continuing one. Read Laurie’s full review on the blog for more details.


puppy island switch


Explore a paradise island and meet adorable puppy pals in Little Friends: Puppy Island, an un-paw-gettable island adventure, available today on the Nintendo Switch™ system. Become best friends with Shibas, Labradors, Corgis, Huskies, Dachshunds and more in a totally labradorable adventure. Go for walks across exciting locations, dig up hidden treasures, build and expand your holiday resort and meet lovable pups to care for on your very own tropical island. Dress up your puppies with over 350 outfits and accessories, and explore sandy beaches, snowy mountains, cherry blossom sanctuaries and more. Care for your puppies by bathing, feeding, brushing, walking and playing with them. Find the paw-fect locations to build new accessory shops and activity stations, and level up your puppies’ skills to discover new areas of the island and become the ultimate pup stars.

Space coloring book

Gibbs Smith

Dive into the cosmic world of Hanna Karlzon’s space-themed coloring book for kids. Packed with detailed illustrations and a touch of quirkiness, it’s a fun exploration of the universe. Join the interstellar adventure, board the spacecraft, and encounter some funky aliens along the way. Perfect for little artists and coloring enthusiasts, this book offers a cool and imaginative journey through the stars. Hanna Karlzon’s Space is not your average coloring book—it’s a stellar escape for kids who love to color outside the lines and let their creativity take off.

Taco Vs. Burrito Game

Taco Vs. Burrito

Wildly popular and surprisingly strategic, Taco Vs. Burrito is a game that was created by a 7-year-old and has taken the card game industry by storm. With over 10,000 five-star reviews, Taco vs Burrito sold a whopping $5.6 million in 2021. It’s perfect for kids, adults, and families alike!  It’s easy to learn in just a few minutes and game play generally runs 10-15 minutes, making it a good choice when you’re short on time.  Plus, the small size makes it easy to travel with!  It’s a fun choice for family game night or to play with friends.

canal toys dog


This soft and adorable Plush Puppy from Canal Toys is your blank canvas! Have fun customizing your plush to match your personal style! Everything you need to transform this puppy into a trendy and cute multi-colored plushie is included. Insert the markers into the real airbrush tool to create seamless, color-blended effects! Add trendy icons with stencils shaped like stars, hearts, palm trees, and more. When you’re ready for a new design, simply wash your plush and start over! The possibilities are endless!

Paint By Stickers Kids Pets

Workman Publishing 

Indulge in hours of creative delight with the Paint by Sticker Kids Pets activity book, a vibrant journey into the world of adorable animals. Riding the wave of the series’ immense popularity, with over 5.1 million copies sold, this edition promises the same addictive allure—thanks to stickers galore! Dive into the immersive and screen-free joy of crafting as you create captivating pet images, including cats, dogs, bunnies, hamsters, and more. Get ready for mess-free fun that sparks imagination and artistic expression, making it the perfect companion for young crafters and sticker enthusiasts.



Made with 100% recycled plastic, Geomag Magnetic Construction Toys are uniquely designed to connect on all sides. For younger or older children, Geomag Glitter comes with 60 pieces. As you can imagine, limitless construction is possible with these open-ended STEM toys. Kids will love creating 2D and 3D creations with the magnetic rods, spheres, and interlocking panels! These are a great screen-free option for kids of all ages.

5 minute crafts rock painting

5-Minute Crafts

Treat your creative kiddo to the 5-Minute Crafts Rock Painting Kit—a cool and unique gift that turns regular rocks into glowing works of art. With glow-in-the-dark paint and fun transfer stickers, this kit lets them dive into a hands-on project that’s way better than staring at screens. It’s not just about painting rocks; it’s about expressing themselves, getting a break from gadgets, and having a blast doing it. Whether they’re flying solo or hosting a little paint party, this kit’s got everything they need. So, gift your creative champ a set of 10 river rocks, some glowy paint, brushes, stickers, and let the fun begin! It’s not just a craft kit; it’s a cool way to keep them entertained and inspired.

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This post currently has 3 responses.

  • Shirley O

    Great selection of gift ideas! The Zoom Ball looks like a lot of fun and the Plush Puppy would make a sweet gift.

  • Kristin Walker

    Wow this is great! Having 3 big kids it’s always hard to find that perfect present for each of them and I think I found them here.. your great! Thank you for sharing this!!

  • Maria Egan

    This is helpful. I have some preteens that can be challenging to find them gifts. I like the idea of games like Tenzi.

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