Holiday Gift Guide Part 2: Electronics, Stocking Stuffers and Books
Here’s round two of our holiday gift guide. Find digital toys and devices, books, DVDs and music for all ages. The editors at Carolina Parent — and sister publications Charlotte Parent and Piedmont Parent — collaborated to choose these items from top toy product lists, parent recommendations and product samples. Also, view our Holiday Gift Guide, Part 1: Toys and Board Games for all Ages.
ELECTRONICS, DVDs and CDS
Bubble Guppies and Team Umizoomi: Into the Snow We Go! Nickelodeon’s Bubble Guppies take to the snow with their first-ever seasonal DVD release, which includes three episodes (two with special guests Team Umizoomi). $14.99; amazon.com; ages 3-5.
Rockabye Baby Lullaby Renditions of Michael Jackson. Lull the wee one to sleep with soft renditions of “Thriller,” “Beat It” and “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson, You’ll also find lullabies from artists such as the White Stripes and Bob Marley. $16.98. rockabyebabymusic.com.
My Cup of Tea. Musician and actress Heidi Swedberg and the Sukey Jump Band’s new album presents joyful music that will have little ones dancing, singing and playing along. Tunes swing from classics like “Coming Around the Mountain” to Latin lullaby “Duermeté.” $15; sukeyjumpmusic.com; ages 2 and older.
i-Mat: My Animal World. Kids can roll, play and learn on this interactive foam mat featuring a full-color illustration of animals from around. A simple point with the Voice Pen on the animal word cloud produces an animal sound, a word, music or a foreign language translation. $79.99 for Voice Pen and i-Mat; creativebabyinc.com; ages 1 and older.
Art Tablet. Turn your iPad into an easel for tots with this protective holder, art set and downloadable iOS app combo, which comes with interactive stamps, animation, music, special effects, a stylus pencil, a crayon and a paintbrush. $39.99; museumtour.com; ages 3 and older.
Laugh & Learn Apptivity Creation Center. Snap this sturdy case onto your iPad to create a learning center for baby that features four smart shape stamps that interact with two free downloadable apps. Snap on the play panel to use without the iPad for more hands-on play and learning. $40; fisher-price.com; ages 12-24 months.
School Zone Little Scholar Tablet. This newly released tablet includes four episodes of a new original children’s video series, “Charlie and Company,” as well as 45 educational apps based on core early-learning concepts and skills, 87 upbeat children’s songs and 45 learn-to-read e-books. $199. schoolzone.com/little-scholar; ages 3 and older.
nabi Jr. Nick Jr. Tablet. Play, read and watch with favorite Nick Jr. characters. The tablet features 16 GB of storage, a 5-inch, high-resolution, capacitive touch screen, and a rotating front and back camera. $139.99; nabitablet.com; ages 4 and older.
Wild Walls Shark Encounter. Create a light and sound experience on your child’s wall. Use the peel ’n’ stick decals to design a Shark Encounter underwater scene. Water wave light effects will gently fade in and out, illuminating the wall to mimic an underwater experience, complete with undersea animal sounds. $29.99; unclemilton.com; ages 5 and older.
Disney Infinity Starter Pack. Create stories and play experiences using this new game platform starring characters from The Walt Disney Company and Pixar Animation Studios. Experience original adventures or build your own world. Playable on a variety of consoles. $59.99-$74.99; disney.com/infinity; currently unrated.
Crayola DigiTools Paint Pack. This set of iPad painting accessories makes it possible to create virtual spray-art effects with a digital airbrush, animate images with a digital stamper and roll down patterns with a digital paint roller. $39.99; crayola.com; ages 3 and older.
Solar Rover. Put together unique solar-motorized modules powered completely by the sun to learn how sunlight is converted into energy. Just add a soda can to make it work. $19.99; museumtour.com; ages 8 and older.
Playmobil Children’s Club With Disco. Choose from one of two dance songs, or connect your MP3 player and select a personal favorite you can play through built-in speakers. Switch on the disco ball and flashing colored lights for a club effect. Move Playmobil figures around on the rotating dance floor, which can also be converted into a board game. $47.99; playmobil.us; ages 4-10.
AGES 10 AND OLDER
Turtle Beach Ear Force X12 Gaming Headset. Enhance your child’s gaming experience with this headset that features amplified audio, bass boost, microphone monitoring and independent chat volume control. USB-powered and compatible with Xbox 360. $59.95; turtlebeach.com; all ages.
SpyNet Night Vision Infrared Stealth Binoculars. See up to 50 feet in complete darkness using night vision technology that features a dual eye display. $112.99; spynethq.com; ages 8 and older.
Algoriddim’s djay for iPad app. If your tween or teen already has an iPad, Algoriddim’s djay app integrates your child’s music library into a full-featured DJ system through which he can perform live, record mixes on-the-go or enable the Automix mode. $9.99; algoriddim.com/djay-ipad; all ages.
IRISPen Executive 7. This portable highlighting tool scans books, magazines, papers or anything else your child may want to load onto a computer for test prep or project research. $99; irislink.com; ages 8 and older.
GoPro HERO3 White Edition. This entry-level, waterproof GoPro features video resolutions of up to 1080p30, 5-megapixel photos up to three frames per second, an ultra wide angle lens and built-in Wi-Fi. It’s 20 percent smaller, 15 percent lighter and 50 percent cheaper than GoPro Black editions. $199.99; gopro.com/cameras; age recommendations vary.
3-D Mirascope. Create a hologram by placing an object inside and watching as mirrored optics project an image into a 3-D floating position on top. $6.99; shop.toysmith.com; ages 8 and older.
Soul Combat+ Ultimate Active Performance Over-Ear Headphones. Active tweens and teens can enjoy high-quality audio sound wearing Soul’s antibacterial, breathable and wide-grip headband; Comply premium ear pads with body heat activation (removable for easy cleaning); and sweat-resistant speaker drivers. Available in blue, black and yellow. $199; soulelectronics.com; all ages.
Chill Baby Volume Pacifier. Part of Fred’s Chill Baby Pacifier collection, this pacifier comes with a volume-control dial to soothe baby when she needs it. $9.99; fredandfriends.com or amazon.com; 0-6 months.
Firefly Ready Go Light Up Timer Toothbrush. This toothbrush mimics a traffic light, flashing green for 30 seconds, yellow for another 30 seconds and red for stop. This encourages the dentist-recommended 60 seconds per row of teeth. Choose from Barbie, Spider Man and Angry Birds. $3.99; fireflytoothbrush.com; ages 3 and older.
Alphaberry. The perfect gift for little ones who like to play on the phone like mom and dad, while learning their ABCs. When a toddler pushes any button on the play phone, a letter appears and can be heard aloud. $21.95; justb-byou.com; ages 18 months-4 years.
Poppy Drops Earring Starter Set. Say goodbye to piercings with these tattoo earrings. The starter kit comes with three collections and one applicator. All earrings are made with food-grade vegetable dyes, are waterproof and are safe for use by children. Remove them with baby oil or rubbing alcohol. $21.95; poppydrops.com; all ages.
FingerPrint Bookmark. In the middle of a good chapter? Snap a Fred & Friends FingerPrint pointing bookmark around your open book and point it to the last word you read so you can quickly pick up where you left off later. $9.99 for a set of three via Amazon; fredandfriends.com; all ages.
Matching Girl and Doll Woven Headband Set. Perfect for the girl who loves to match her doll. The large headband fits girls, from toddlers to adults, and the doll headband fits most 18-inch dolls. Custom order colors and patterns. $12; etsy.com/shop/katiebugbows; ages 10 and older.
StyleWire Laces. Light up the night with illuminating, battery-powered shoe laces, which come 28 inches long (but can be cut) and are made to withstand normal daily use. Battery life is 70-80 hours. Choose from blue, green, fuchsia or rainbow. $14.95; museumtour.com/product/7512/stylewire-laces; all ages.
Tickets to LEGO KidsFest. Tickets to the nationally-travelling LEGO expo make a great holiday gift and will fit nicely into your child’s stocking. The tour stops at the Raleigh Convention Center Feb. 28-March 2, 2014, and will offer 3 acres of activity and entertainment for kids — and parents — of all ages. Purchase tickets ,$20-$22, at legokidsfest.com; all ages.
Peace on Earth: A Christmas Collection by Mary Engelbreit. Featuring lively illustrations, this book is filled with traditional Christmas songs, poetry and the author’s favorite childhood traditions. $17.99; zondervan.com; ages 4 and older.
Baby Santa by M. Maitland DeLand. Santa and the elves forgot to put nametags on the presents! Luckily, Santa’s helpful son uses his special gift to save the day. Greenleaf Book Group Press, $14.95; amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com; ages 3-5.
The Christmas Cats Chase Christmas Rats by Constance Cocoran Wilson. Christmas Cats learn to view rats as individuals. The story builds upon the idea of keeping an open mind and appreciating each other’s differences. $14.95; amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com; ages 3-10.
Angelina Ballerina’s Nutcracker Sweet by Katharine Holabird. Angelina and her friend, Marco, are performing the “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” for the school’s holiday showcase. Bring Angelina’s dance to life with paper dolls and a stage illustration inside of the book’s cover. $9.99; amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com; ages 5-8.
Olivia Helps With Christmas by Ian Falconer. Christmas is coming, and Olivia is busy. She has to wait for Santa, make sure Dad sets up the tree, watch Mom make the Christmas dinner, oversee the care with which the stockings are hung and, of course, open her presents! $7.99; simonandschuster.com; ages 3-8.
The World AlmanacFor Kids 2014 (edited by Sarah Janssen). Filled with fun, fascinating facts and essential homework help on a wide range of subjects, this full-color, updated almanac features new content, quizzes, experiments, puzzles, games, activities, jokes, maps, websites and more. $13.99; worldalmanac.com; ages 9-12.
Time for Kids Top 5 of Everything: Tallest, Tastiest, Fastest by the editors of Time for Kids magazine. Ever wonder what the top five longest running Broadway shows are, or the top five greatest books for kids? You name it, there’s a top five for it in this book. $11.99; timeforkids.com/store/books; ages 8 and older.
It Can’t be True! By the editors at Discovery Kids. How big is the biggest cave? Is the largest insect really 10 inches across? This book answers these questions and more. $19.99; kids.discovery.com/shop/books; ages 7 and older.
Carla Kelly’s Christmas Collection by Carla Kelly. Enjoy four heart-warming Christmas stories that take place in Regency London: The Christmas Ornament, Make a Joyful Noise, An Object of Charity and The Three Kings. $8.88; cedarfort.com; ages 15 and older.