Thinking about what gift to give a kid who has everything? Or perhaps your house is overrun with toys, or your child isn’t interested in toys, so you want to find a non-toy gift.
In this gift guide we’ve put together a list of unique, practical gifts for toddlers and preschoolers in Australia.
We’ve sorted our recommendations by category to make it easier for you to find what you want.
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Subscription Activity Boxes
Kids have missed out on a lot of travel due to the pandemic, but you can make up for the lost time with the Little Passports subscription box.
Winner of the National Parenting Products Award 2017, it is an educational box with monthly themes based on different countries and culture.
It ships worldwide from the US and your first box even comes with several freebies – a cute little suitcase, a wall-sized world map and luggage tag.
Mum-owned business Green Crafts Kids is all about teaching the next generation about sustainability and our beautiful planet.
Every monthly box contains Science and Art projects plus a 12 page magazine. The Junior Box is specifically curated for kids aged 3 to 5 to help them learn about environmental issues.
Personalised Wall Growth Charts
If you have a kid who’s excited about growing up, they’ll adore having a personalised growth chart printed with their name and photo.
Photobook has a beautiful range 20+ of wall growth chart templates that you can customise. Designs include dinosaurs, space, woodland animals and more!
Personalised Colouring Books
Another fantastic gift product from Photobook is a collection of customised colouring book with hard covers and 24 pages of fun designs to colour in.
The pages are printed on high-quality Ivory Art paper so kids can colour using magic pens, permanent markers, watercolour brush pens, or colour pencils.
Personalised Jigsaw Puzzles
The perfect present for the little puzzlers in your life. How much fun would it be to solve a puzzle design created from your child’s favourite photo, or a photo of something that they love and is special to them?
These customised jigsaw puzzles comes in two sizes (120 pieces or 300 pieces). Build from a blank photo puzzle, or insert your photo within one of the many fun pre-designed frames.
Personalised Memory Game Cards
Imagine spending hours of fun with the family, as you flip through decks with familiar faces playing a customised memory card game.
Each deck of cards comes in a set of 24, and is packed nicely in a drawstring bag making it the perfect option for gifting (and tidying up).
Arts & Crafts Kits
We absolutely love these neon colouring sets from Lime Tree Kids! The bright stickers, neon markers and funky illustrations will bring hours of creative fun.
Both options come in a box with magnetic flaps, 36 colouring pages, 5 sticker sheets, and 3 double-sided markers – we reckon that’s a lot of value for money!
Also from Lime Tree kids, these award-winning mosaic DIY sets by Djeco are heaps of fun to do with your little ones and the finished products are gorgeous art pieces!
The butterfly set comes with 3 illustrated scenes, and the dinosaur set includes 2 scenes.
Origami is not only provides many hours of fun, but it’s also great for developing fine motor skills (as well as geometric awareness!) These themed origami kits bring different worlds to life – dinosaurs, animals, fortune tellers, small boxes and aeroplanes.
Each kit comes with beautifully printed paper as well as full colour step-by-step instructions so your little one can follow along. Once the creations are made, what follows can be hours of imaginary and/or social play.
For the budding little chefs in your life, the KiddiKutter is a great gift option.
It’s designed for children three years and older and it enables them to cut through food as you would with a sharp knife, but protects little fingers due to the rounded serrations of the stainless steel blade design.
Perfect for encouraging independence, personal accomplishment and responsibility.
Recognising, understanding and acknowledging feelings is an important life skill. Books can help children build emotional intelligence through its characters and narrative, prompting children to reflect on their own feelings and those of others.
The stories may also explore coping mechanisms and effective ways of managing uncomfortable feelings.
The Sometimes I Feel series addresses emotions including: anger, sadness, anxiousness, kindness, happiness.
Double-sided puzzles by Mudpuppy
Mudpuppy puzzles encourage children to develop their problem solving, thinking skills as well as concentration. Containing a two-in-one double-sided puzzle challenge in each box, the pieces are made from a thick, high quality and durable material. Each puzzle contains 100 pieces and are suitable for 6+ years.
The vibrant puzzle design includes: dinosaurs, bugs and birds, animal kingdom and cats and dogs.
Search & Find Puzzles by Djeco
Officially called “Observation Puzzles”, this series of puzzles by award-winning brand Djeco features little objects along the borders of the puzzle that you have to search and find within the bigger picture
This adds another depth of interest to the puzzles, and it’s fun for kids to try spotting objects as they piece together the puzzle.
The pieces range from 35 to 100 in a set, but for kids aged between 3 to 5, our favourite has been the 54 Pcs Aquatic Observation Puzzle.
It’s challenging enough for this age group, but easy enough for them to complete independently with a bit of patience.
Carry-Play LEGO table with storage
The Carry-Play Lego table with storage enables you to turn any space into a play space.
It’s compatible with Duplo, LEGO, Mega bloks and is 100% waterproof and suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.
It comes with 2 large storage compartments, 4 clip-on side buckets, 2 reversible table tops as 2 height settings making it a versatile play, storage table.
A worthwhile investment to support open-ended, creative and sensory play.
A toy storage box is an excellent gift option for organising toys, keeping bits and bobs out of sight, and for teaching your child how to look after their own belongings. A safety hinge allows for soft open and shut closures – making this much safer for use with little ones.
Your child will also love the bold and vibrant designs, which can be easily matched to existing decor.
A dollhouse bookcase is a great addition to any child’s room. It’s large enough to store books and toys, and is very functional – serving as a toy for imaginative play, a piece of furniture for storage as well as decor because it’s beautiful to look at!
When space is at a premium, multi-functional pieces make an excellent gift option.
Your little bookworm will love having their own dedicated space to enjoy a good read.
This bookcase with an inbuilt reading nook offers 6 storage spaces (storage sized perfectly for big picture books) as well as cushioned seat with velcro backing so it’s all ready to go once it’s assembled.
Nurture your child’s reading habits with this compact, yet surprisingly versatile furniture option.
This tree bookshelf boasts a 9-tiered bookshelf design, and provides plenty of storage space for your child’s books, toys, and even to display artwork.
The distinctive tree-shaped profile would easily fit in with any child’s bedroom or playroom decor, and the design is ‘grown up’ enough to grow with your child through the years.
Every kid has a beloved collection of trinkets – rocks, coins, feather, sticks etc.
Giving them a beautifully designed box allows them store their collection safety so their trinkets are not constantly being thrown around the house.
A music box is even better, as the soothing music can be quite calming for sensory seeking kids.
They will love having their own little “treasure box”, and there will be less mess for you to clean up, win win!
We hope our recommendations have provided you with some ideas as to the types of non-toy gifts you can gift the little ones in your life.
Thoughtfulness in gifting, can be a great source of joy both for the giver and the receiver.