For the SCIENTIST
When choosing seeds for carnivorous plants, read online reviews carefully. Some species and brands of seeds have better track records than others. Most carnivorous plants come from humid environments, so you may want to supplement your purchase with a terrarium. Get highly reviewed seeds for this Australian Pitcher Plant here: http://amzn.to/2BKeVWz
This ain’t your grandma’s ant farm! This ant farm is made of gel instead of sand, meaning the tunnels won’t collapse if it’s handled. The gel is also nutritious food for the ants so no one starves to death, making this a great low maintenance gift. A built in LED light casts great shadows at night. This is a favorite at our house. Might pair nicely with the previous gift if you’re not squeamish. Get this gel ant farm at Amazon http://amzn.to/2AEkTJe
Root Beer Home Brewing Kit
Everything you need to brew up some cold ones. We turned this into a science lesson by learning about what happens in the brewing process. Find this Mr. Root Beer Home Brewing Root Beer Kit online.
For the ENTERTAINER
For kids who like to take center stage, this karaoke machine is a big hit. It’s currently listed on Amazon Prime as in stock, ready for delivery before Christmas, and under $70.00! (2016 VERSION) Singing Machine SML-385 Top Loading CDG Karaoke System With Sound and Disco Light Show (Black)
Unleash your child’s inner magician with this Criss Angel Professional Magic Kit. This set is geared toward older kids and adults so it is a higher quality than some of the kits you might find at a toy store.
For the TECH GUY
We got this All-New Fire HD 8 Tablet with Alexa, 8″ HD Display, 16 GB, Black – with Special Offers for our tween boy last Christmas and it was the biggest hit by far! He still uses it almost everyday to read, listen to audio books, and play games. We have even found apps that allow him to load his spelling words so that he can practice for his weekly tests. For parents concerned about unleashing the world wide web to their child, rest assured that this device offers a high level of parental controls. Parents are able to block web browsing, app downloads, and even create a curfew time that will lock the device during certain times of the day or night. This is a device that our tween will be able to use well into his teen years.
For the Tech Lover who already has it all, Try this COJOY Black Universal Multi-Device Charging Station Dock. It charges several devices at once, works for both Android and Apple devices, and has a sleek and mature look your tween boy will appreciate into his teen and young adult years… assuming devices still have to be charged by then. If not – this will be very retro.
3D Printing Pen
The MYNT3D Professional Printing 3D Pen with OLED Display is the stuff of my childhood dreams about the future. Being able to create 3-D images by drawing them! Of course, I imagined being able to draw into existence my own flying car, but maybe next year.
For the SPORTS FAN
Man Cave room decorations
His room might already look like a cave, but personalizing it with sports team decorations beyond posters and pennants can make it more mature. I chose this New Orleans Saints NFL Team Logo Man Cave Sign, but you can choose another team… if you allow that kind of thing in your household.
When I hung this Wham-O Hamper Hoop in my tween boy’s room I knew we had hit “teen” phase. All of my male cousins had some kind of miniature basketball hoop in their room when they were teenagers, and this one gets filled with dirty gym socks – which is another milestone that just screams TEENAGER.
Laser tag set
When my son told me he wanted to play laser tag for his birthday, I thought, “Great, let me just build a time machine and take you back to the 1990s”. Let me tell you: everyone had a BLAST! Even some adults got in on action! This Best Choice Products Kids Laser Tag Set Gun Toy Blasters W/ Multiplayer Mode, 4 Pack has incredible reviews from customers on Amazon. 87% of people who purchased and reviewed this set gave it 5 out of 5 stars. Multiple kits can be purchased because all of the pieces will work together across sets allowing you to have one epic laser tag war!
For the OUTDOORSMAN
Outdoor emergency kit
This Survival Kit for Camping Hiking Travelling or Adventures (Black) is the real deal. It includes tools for cutting and starting fires, so evaluate which pieces you want to relinquish to your tween or teen when you gift it. We have several acres of wooded area on our property and our son carries his emergency whistle when he is exploring out there. The survival kit in its entirety is something he brings when he is camping or fishing in the backwoods with his dad.
Bow and arrows
When you are selecting a bow for your tween boy, you need to take into account not only their skill level, but also their strength. A smaller boy won’t be able to draw back the string on the bow meant for bigger teens or adults. That’s one reason the Sinoart 45″ Archery Bow and Arrow Kit Set 4 Arrows 18 Lb for Teens is a good choice for beginners in the 10-12 age range. Since not everyone lives on farm where they can shoot arrows without worrying about hitting a person or pet, this set includes two suction cup tipped arrows that can be used in more populated areas.
For the kids who likes to spend long hours outside in the winter, these snow boots from REI are a great choice. Protect those stinky tween toesies from the cold without seeming like an overbearing mom by getting them into some cool looking boots. These are my personal favorite and can be found on REI’s website: https://www.rei.com/product/120929/keen-kootenay-waterproof-snow-boots-kids
For the MUSIC LOVER
Bluetooth Headphones really do create a more enjoyable listening experience than being tangled up in a cord. This set is highly praised on Amazon, with over 75% of folks who purchased them rating them at 5 out of 5 stars.
In the world of bluetooth speakers you can find a wide price range. Bluetooth speakers can be purchased for as little as $10, all the way up to several hundred. When purchasing for a tween boy, take into account their maturity level and how long they are able to keep track of personal belongings that aren’t nailed down. This ZOEE S1 Outdoor Portable Stereo Speaker is one of my favorites because it comes at a very reasonable price point and has great customer reviews.
For the tween who likes making music as much as listening to it, try this Pick-a-Palooza DIY Guitar Pick Punch with Leather Key Chain Pick Holder. It comes with strips of plastic that you can punch into guitar picks, but the fun doesn’t stop there. After all of those Christmas gift cards are used up, repurpose them by stamping them into guitar picks. Credit cards, hotel room key cards, library cards, driver’s licenses; anything thin and plastic works! So hide your wallet, you wont need to cut your credit cards into guitar picks after shopping this list because everything is $100 or less!