It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to buy cool gifts for your kids and spur their imagination, and you don’t have to settle for the latest ultra-violent video game. A lot of good ideas are under $100 and can be used all year long. Unlike a video game, these gifts never go out of style, and some are educational gifts. Here are 10 cool “budget” gifts for kids with a creative side:
They may not become geologists, but kids do enjoy polishing and studying rocks. A rock tumbler or polisher can spark their interest in science.
For under twenty bucks you can get a paint kit with canvas, and start your kids on a creative run. If you have a Harry Potter, LOTR or Star Trek fan, get him to paint you a landscape from his or her favorite series.
Harry Potter, LOTR or Star Wars Chess Set
It’s never too early to learn chess, the ultimate strategy game. It helps develop the brain, and is less violent than the latest video game. A Lord of the Rings chess set may even get them to read again.
Even a cheap telescope will allow you to see Mars, and other bodies in space. Never underestimate the wonder that outer space can spark.
Electronic Keyboard or Acoustic Guitar
A musical instrument is a “must” for any kid, but sales of instruments have fallen in recent years. Don’t neglect this area of the brain. Electronic keyboards are very cheap nowadays, and can be used to start your kids on piano lessons. A guitar is also inexpensive and can lead your son into a whole new world of creativity. Unless you start them, you’ll never know if it’s something they’ll love.
RISK Board Game
If you have boys who enjoy strategy games, RISK is the ultimate multi-player combat game – but without the violent graphics. It builds up the left side of the brain, and is a lot of fun. Besides, it will occupy your kids for 4 to 5 hours. What could be better?
Surprisingly, Legos have become popular even with older teens. Start your kids as early as 7 on a building expedition.
Folding paper into animals: this is a lot of fun for adults and children. The more complicated kits can really exercise your brain – even on a cheap budget.
Plastic dinosaurs or balsa wood airplanes…. they’re all good. Let your kids build, paint, and create. This hobby isn’t as popular as it was in the 70s, but it can be a great outlet of creativity. It’s inexpensive, too.
Buy your son his first collectible comic books. Teach him how to take care of them, and buy some plastic bags and backing boards. This hobby might even become a lucrative endeavor down the line. Some of my early Spider-man and Iron Man comics are worth $500 each, even in their “fair” condition. It also taught me how to invest, take care of valuables, and diversify.
You see, you can do a lot for less than $100. Some of the gifts we got as kids still make great Christmas or birthday gifts for the next new generation.
See Also: Top 40 Rock Songs for Christmas
Craft Projects for Kids
How to Wean Your Kids Off Video Games