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Last Update: October 15th, 2019
Presents, presents… and more presents!
If you’re like us, you love giving presents.
I love giving presents not only to my three boys (the two kids plus my husband) but also to my closest family, friends, their kids…
But I do have a problem with that.
A quantity problem that it is easy to explain.
Coming from a family of 7 brothers and sisters, whenever I see Christmas in the calendar, I know I have to find 18 gifts for my nephews, and I am not even counting my own kids, my husband, my mom, my friends…
Yes, I have 18 nephews just from my side of the family.
And this is just for Christmas but if you add their birthdays, my kid’s friends birthdays, my friend’s kids birthdays… if you sum all of those up, it’s a month wage gone just like that.
Gifts budget won’t survive!
Just from my direct family plus my closest friends kids, each Christmas, I know I’ll have to come up with nearly 30 to 40 gifts for the kids.
And this is for Christmas alone. But I am sure you have an idea about how the entire year looks like, right?
This can quickly kill any budget.
And can also be a daunting task to find cool gifts, that kids would love and that won’t sound or look cheap.
Because let’s face it, I won’t be able to afford to buy expensive and great presents for everyone. It doesn’t even make sense.
But I’ll have to find something that kids will appreciate. That they won’t feel disappointed when unwrapping it.
A bit of math to make things simpler:
Imagine I would buy each of those 30 to 40 kids a gift worth $20.
My gift budget just for the kids (excluding my own) would be roughly $800. (R-E-A-L-L-Y!?!?!)
If you add up all the gifts you need to purchase throughout the year, at the end of the year, it worth an amazing family holiday. (heavy breathing…)
I am already nervous about reading the previous sentence.
And, since we are Practical Parents, we need to solve this practically.
Let’s do it!
I needed to find the Best Kids Gifts Under $10 to reduce the $800 in half.
That was already a major improvement, right?
But I just don’t want to sound cheap. At least for those receiving them.
My goal was to find a list of gifts that were cool and wouldn’t look or sound cheap.
Presents kids would actually enjoy.
I am going to share with you my full list (40!) of presents for this year’s Christmas and Birthday events, all under $10 budget.
Hopefully, this list might help you in similar endeavors.
You probably won’t need as much or you might need even more.
The list is just meant to give you some ideas about what you could be offering at a lower budget.
These are perfect as Christmas gifts, birthday gifts or just because gifts.
There are some I wouldn’t mind playing with myself, to be honest.
Disclaimer: unfortunately we can’t control Amazon prices and therefore, although all of the listed toys and games were priced below $10 when we wrote this, it’s possible that, when you check them, the price may have gone up. Hopefully, it won’t go much higher than the $10 limit we set for this list.
Best Kids Gifts Under $10 (That Won’t Look or Sound Cheap)
Rainbow Loom: “I purchased this and along with additional bands for my 6-year-old for Christmas. She loves it. I was a little worried after talking to other moms who said they ended up throwing these out when their kids got them. Super sturdy and very easy to use. She has already made hundreds of bracelets on this loom since Christmas. She watches a lot of tutorials on YouTube and ends up with a bunch of different designs. Great product!” ($9.99)
Window Art: “I bought this several months ago. My 8-year-old daughter still uses it even after the novelty was gone. She’s been making “window clings” with the leftover paint since she’s used all the shapes that came with it. She enjoys making them as gifts for her friends, teacher, bus driver… anyone she happens to be thinking about. Highly recommend this kit.” ($9.94)
Deluxe Doctor Kit: “These are adorable, both my kids (3 and almost 2) love playing with this kit!! The one thing that looks like scissors that pinch can be…irritating during a fight between kids. But really, what toy CAN’T be a weapon in the hands of an angry toddler? This was a better quality item than I expected! Especially the carrying box. My boys actually use it to carry their stickers and toy cars now and keep the medkit elsewhere :)” ($9.75)
Jenga Classic Game: “If somebody doesn’t know what Jenga is about: it is a game where you build a tower out of wooden blocks (3 pieces per floor), and players are taking turns to remove blocks out of the tower. If the tower falls apart on your turn, you will lose the game. It is a very simple and fun game.” ($6.88)
Guess Who Original Game: “This is very much the exact same game as when I was younger. The set up is fast and my chief complaint is the cardholders which still come apart easily and aren’t made from the best quality plastic. My Son hates memory games but loves this so it’s been a fun compromise.” ($9.97)
The Official Uno Tin [Amazon Exclusive]: “I work in a residential treatment center for children with trauma and I use UNO at work as a quick way to help kids calm down or get distracted from negative emotions. I’ve given it out to kids as a reward all the time. I swear it should come with a label that says it’s approved by the American Psychological Association because everyone I know who works in mental health uses UNO. It’s a great game. Fun and easy for kids to learn and feel successful.” ($9.90)
Trouble Game: “Bought this to play with family every now and then, as I used to play this game all the time as a kid 20 years ago. The product feels cheaper than the Trouble game I remember from 20 years ago, and the actual board game is a cardboard sheet that slides over the plastic molding with the dice bubble in it. Pieces are thinner and not as thick as they used to be as well. HOWEVER! None of this is a deal-breaker, it still is, and plays exactly like the Trouble game I remember. And the cheaper manufacturing I mentioned above can be forgiven because you’re getting a colorful board game for just $5-6 delivered to your home in 2 days. RECOMMEND and 5 STARS.” ($6.99)
SmartGames IQ Puzzler Pro: “We purchased this as a gift for a friend, but my 5-year old accidentally opened it up and started playing with it. He LOVES it (as do both his parents). The accompanying book provides 100 ways to start the puzzle and ranges from very easy to much more difficult. Our son can follow the book to get started and then finishes the puzzle on his own. Some of the more difficult ones make it great for adults to play as well. We wound up buying a second version of this to gift his friend.” ($9.99)
Coogam Wooden Tetris Puzzle: “Of all the things I got my 3 yo son for Christmas, this little puzzle has been played with the most. He loves it. It can be put together multiple ways, but you can get it wrong so you need to think to shift things around to get them to fit. Bright colored pieces are easy to find when they are scattered around the living room.”($7.99)
Monopoly Deal: “No words can describe how grateful I am to have bought this game. For the last few years it’s been incredibly difficult getting our family of four together and happy, even during holidays. Yesterday night for Christmas I pulled out monopoly deal and for the first time in ages ALL 4 of us wanted to stay in the same room for more than the usual! We laughed, laugh-cried, and played almost 15 “one more round”s (hah!). It’s super fun and easy to learn.” ($7.99)
Clue Game: “I remember playing Clue as a kid, and it was pretty fun even though we were almost certainly playing it wrong. Now, picking up a copy for just a few dollars, this is a blast to play with my children. Most of the familiar characters are there: Col Mustard, Prof Plumb… Mrs. White is missing, but there are some new faces as well.” ($8.77)
Dragamonz: “My eight year old son saw the commercial and wanted this toy. I bought it for him and when I saw how small the dinos were I thought he would be disappointed but he wasn’t. He loves the dino cards and he never mentioned how small the dinos were. He plays with them all the time.” ($8.49)
Pete The Cat: Game teaches children literacy as they learn new vocabulary and social skills as they sing songs together. ($9.97)
Power Balls: “I love these. My 3 year old daughter and I had a great time making these and the balls come out great! They are super easy to make and only take 3 minutes. Kept her very busy for a while and she liked how they glow in the dark.” ($9.97)
Today I’ll be a Princess: “My almost three-year-old daughter is officially in her princess phase and I wanted to buy her some princess/girly books for Christmas. I searched a lot on here and came upon this one, along with a few others. This one had pretty good reviews so I ordered it. Since Christmas morning, we have been reading it every single day, sometimes two or more times a day! The book is 12 pages long so it’s fairly short and each set of pages only has one sentence or part of a sentence that continues on the following page, but it really is a cute book.” ($6.99)
Disney Frozen Princess Board Book: “I loved these! I bought them for my niece who is getting into the “princess” phase. My favorite part about this product is that the pages are very thick. This makes it much more durable for young ones. My niece really seemed to like the pictures more than anything. She is only a toddler, so she cannot read yet. However, the story/songs in each book create easy reading for mothers and daughters. I would not suggest buying these for any ages above 3 or 4 because of how easy the story is.” ($9.95)
Baby Starters Brunette Olivia Doll: “My Mother wanted to purchase a doll for my daughter that would feel good against her skin, that didn’t have a hard face or features. This was the only doll out there that fit the bill. It’s perfect.” ($9.99)
Melissa & Doug Wooden Stamp Set Disney Princesses: “I got this for my 3-year-old daughter after she developed a sticker obsession. She could go through a sheet of stickers in seconds, so I figured this was the next best thing and would last a lot longer. She loves it! The set is good quality and includes a nice variety of stamps that all feature recognizable characters. I would highly recommend to anyone with a little princess fan in their life.” ($8.99)
Melissa & Doug Safari Wooden Chunky Puzzle: “I really like this puzzle. The colors are true to the picture. It is made of good quality wood and the edges are smooth. No problem with splinters. The faces of the characters are so cute and appealing. This is a very durable and safe puzzle. It is a fun way to learn about some of the animals in the zoo. It is a good way for children to learn more about colors. I like that it helps develop those small motor skills, too.” ($8.99)
Where Do Diggers Sleep at Night (Board Book): “This book is one the cutest children’s books I have ever read. It’s very well written. It has rhymes that actually make sense and flow well. A perfect book for ages 2-5. Each page shows a different truck and their baby truck getting ready for bed or snuggling into the parent. I highly recommend this book.” ($6.99)
Melissa & Doug Rainbow Caterpillar Gear Toy: “My toddler loves this. I wanted a fun and interactive way to teach her colors, and this does an amazing job, plus so much more. She has been counting the gears and is amazed at how they turn. It also works well as a quiet time toy, perfect for our cross country flights to see our family.” ($8.99)
Wooden Apple Lacing Toy: “I’ve been looking for quality toys that will assist my youngest with her hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. This fits the bill and exceeds my expectations! My 5-year-old still even enjoys playing with this. The laces were easy to thread through and very cutely designed.” ($7.99)
Melissa & Doug Scissor Skills and Tape Activity Pad Set: “Our girls have loved playing with this item. We bought it for a road trip and to have as something to do while visiting their great-grandma. It was a hit. Now we use it during quiet time. It’s perfect for ages 3 or 4 and up.” ($8.99)
Kids Cooking and Baking Set: “This set is very realistic looking. I’m happy to have found this particular set because it fits younger children very well. This set is great for pretend play and teaching young children how to use actual kitchen tools early and safely.” ($9.99)
Butterfly Magnets, Arts & Crafts: “This set is very well made just like everything else from Melissa & Doug. The supplies make it easy to create unique magnets that can go on the fridge to be used by everyone. They had a great time making these.” ($4.99)
ALEX Toys Craft Color Scroller: “My grandchildren love this! They color for hours and I have the artwork all over my house to prove it! It keeps them busy and away from the TV. I like the way they use their imagination with their drawings.” ($8.99)
Fisher-Price Baby’s First Blocks: “One of the things that set this shapes box apart from others we tried and did not like, is that the openings for the shapes have enough of a shoulder area that it’s not overly difficult and frustrating to actually fit the shapes through.” ($6.99)
Stacking Cups Early Educational Toddlers Toy: “These are super versatile and fun for my 9-month-old. He’s had them since about 7 months and they’ve been a hit from day 1…. building towers, bath toys, pretend cups to drink out of, etc. He pulls them out to play with all the time and we are super happy with them. The little squeaky animal that comes with them makes a super annoying noise though – our dog destroyed it pretty quickly and I can’t say I minded at all!” ($9.99)
Innocheer Wooden Puzzle: “These are seriously one of the most played with toys we have and the most played with learning toy!! My two-year-old is loving the shape sorter and getting all the shapes in the correct pegs and my 4-year-old is loving the creativity of the wooden puzzle and trying to figure out how to put it all back in the correct space so it fits!! The quality is great as well and it seems like it will last a long time, even with so much play!! It will be great Christmas gifts.” ($6.99)
YesToys Wooden Train Set: “This wooden train set is so cute, very easy to connect together and it brings us a lot of fun!!!” ($9.99)
27 PCs Preschool Learning Toys Stacking Blocks: “I purchased this for my Montessori Kindergarten classroom. It helps the child identify & focus on each curve and straight line in the letters, not to mention helps with fine motor skills. I am not disappointed. I even bought a second one for a gift!” ($7.95)
PlayMonster Yeti in My Spaghetti: “My 3y/o always wants to play board games w/ his older sisters (ages 6 & 9) but there aren’t many that they can all play together. I ordered this not knowing what to expect, but thankfully it’s a hit across the board! I had fun playing it too! Very cute, simple, exciting game. Highly recommend it!” ($8.31)
SET – The Family Game of Visual Perception: “Set deserves the awards it has won. Always popular with my family, I’ve now started giving it as a gift to other families, e.g., when invited to dinner. (Kids can’t drink a bottle of wine!) It is a way to encourage quality family time and stimulate logic and perception. You can play for 10 minutes or for hours–each game is fairly short.” ($8.99)
Spot It! JR. Animals: “We bought this as a family game to play with our 3-year-old son. This is by far his favorite game, and he chooses this one to play whenever we have a game night. It did not take him long to understand the concept of finding the animals that match the two cards. Some of the animals he did not know, but it was good for helping him to learn new animal names. The instructions include five variations of playing, which keeps the game fresh.” ($9.99)
Don’t Break the Ice Game: “I bought this as a gift for my two nieces, ages 3 and 8. At Christmas time it quickly became a hit, with the kids being able to play several times on their own and adults even taking turns against each other. Fitting the pieces all together into the frame is a bit of a tight squeeze so the kids needed help at first, but even they got the hang of it.” ($8.43)
Wonder Forge Jurassic World Matching: “My 3 yr old has always loved dinosaurs and recently has gotten into matching games. So it’s not a surprise that he absolutely adores this game. There are lots of game pieces so we play with a subset of the matches. The price was very reasonable and it even glows in the dark which he thinks is cool.” ($5.97)
Regal Games Original Travel Bingo 4 Pack: “Bought this for a camping trip that required a few hours of driving time to get there. My 6 (almost 7) year old son loved it! I brought small prizes along for winning, so the driving portion of our trip passed quickly. My 2-year-old son enjoyed playing with the slider windows.” ($7.99)
Number Slap Jack: “Very fun game! My five year old loves playing and it doesn’t feel like he is doing work! Great for extra number practice. After purchasing this I went back and got the alphabet one too.” ($8.99)
OleOletOy Pop Tubes Sensory Fidget Toy for Kids: “These sensory fidget toys are great for my two autistic children to use for their ABA therapy. Even my niece who does not have ASD uses them to improve her motor skills. They are made with good and sturdy plastic. I like the bright colors; they keep our children busy for hours. I highly recommend it.” ($9.95)
Fuyage Moon Equilibrium: “Our grandkids range from 13 to 2. They all love playing the game. I would recommend it to any grandparent.” ($9.99)
Kids are smart and sometimes little devils, when unwraping their presents.
We’re sure we’ve seen that face of disappointment after opening a present and seeing what was inside.
Probably you’ve done that face yourself last Christmas.
But, you’ve also had that great experience where you got something that was a major surprise.
And that is what we tried to achieve with this list of kids’ gifts under $10.
A list of gifts that could easily be that “major surprise.”