Does an upcoming birthday or holiday have you wondering about the best gifts for a 7-year-old in your life? As anyone who has ever spent time with a kid this age knows, it’s a stage of curiosity, which often leads to asking lots (and lots!) of questions. They’re beginning to mature and develop interests that could last a lifetime, so gifts like STEM activities, active toys, and real musical instruments could actually influence their future hobbies and careers. In a nutshell, the best toys & gifts for 7-year old boys and girls encourage them to explore the world around them.
Claire S. Green, President of Parents’ Choice Foundation, the nation’s oldest nonprofit dedicated to finding quality media and toys, explains that 7-year-olds have reached a point where they know what they like and are even eager to show us adults how to do certain things correctly. (Hey, sometimes we need to be told what’s what!) “They’ve started developing their own interests in toys and games, sports, books and maybe even music,” Green says. “It’s time to start encouraging these interests — unless of course, the interests are detrimental to life and limb.” (Important caveat.)
While the exact picks below were not chosen by Green, we curated this list of the best gifts & toys for 7-year-olds with her advice in mind (including birthday gift ideas for 7 year olds). The goal? To help keep their brains and bodies busy as they begin establishing their independence.
Active Games & Outdoor Toys for Kids
“Couch potatoes are out; movers and shakers are in,” Green says. “With gross motor skills on the rise, bikes, scooters, stilts, and classic games like Twister [are] great.”
This tried-and-true toy will bring any 7-year-old kid from point A to B in style. Arguably a notch up on the cool scale when compared to a traditional bicycle, Razor scooters have been stealing the show for nearly 20 years, and if you know a kiddo yearning for one, it might be time to fulfill their wish. This one comes with the classic style and features and has thousands of rave reviews online. Your favorite kid can use it for travel or tricks!
At this age, kids are all about taking on new challenges and getting silly at the same time, which makes these balance stilts the perfect gift. But keep in mind, these stilts are no joke! You’ll want to make sure your youngster has all the padding (helmet, elbows, knees… and probably toes!) as stilts can take a ton of tries before they can be used without a tumble. And of course, if this is a gift, chat with the parent(s) to make sure they’re ready to give stilt-ing guidance and supervision. If you get the all-clear, we love these stilts because they’re made of stainless steel and designed for both beginners and expert kids.
Start ’em young! Twister is a classic game that’s been around since the ’60s and it’s no wonder why it’s still so popular. Perfect for family game nights, playdates, and birthday parties, Twister is the go-to game for when everyone is ready to loosen up and have some fun. Remember how it works? Have someone use the spinner to shout out which body part needs to touch which colored circle. The rest is up to the participants to figure it out, without falling!
BTW: This is Twister Ultimate, which means it’s the 2020 version. Basically, there are more spots (twice the amount when compared to the classic version) which means more room for fun. The coolest new feature? You can use Alexa (via an Echo device) to guide the game. If a smaller group wants to play then they can simply eliminate a row or two.
Board Games & Puzzles for Kids
“Although their problem-solving and strategy skills are improving, don’t overestimate your child’s ability. [But] don’t underestimate it either!” Green advises. “Age grading is on packaging for a reason. Choose games and puzzles with increasing levels of difficulty. Master one level, gain confidence, advance. Do you have a family game night? Try letting your seven-year-old read the directions aloud – and suggest they show younger siblings how to play.”
You can’t go wrong with gifting the OG guessing game to your favorite 7-year-old kiddo. When a kid plays this game, they’ll use their own board to determine which mystery card their opponent is holding. The game hasn’t changed much since it made waves in the ’80s, and we don’t want it to!
With a fun sewing kit, 7-year-olds can learn lifelong skills —and have fun doing it! Gift a beginner sewer with this Little Monsters kit, which contains over 100 sewing materials, like colored embroidery floss, felt, pins, needles, poly-stuffing, and more. Kid-friendly instructions teach youngsters how to make five monster projects that are cute, functional, and fun to play with. And thanks to the inclusion of five sewing needles, several siblings or friends can start crafting together!
Building Toys for Kids
“Yes, LEGO® is king. And queen. Open-ended brick building toys have a great deal to offer – especially if they’re picked up after play,” Green explains. “The themed sets do extra duty, as imaginative play moves to the next level.”
LEGO sets are perfect for gifting a kid when pretty much the only thing you know about them is their age. LEGO boxes always feature the age in the upper lefthand corner of the box, and chances are the kid you’re gifting doesn’t have every LEGO set already, especially if you go with a new release. This creator set is perfect for gals or guys and it comes with over 340 pieces for a seven-year-old to spend hours on. Kids can create trucks or planes with this set and then take what they’ve built apart to rebuild in a different style.
This super cute LEGO Friends set is packed with plenty personality and a whopping dose of whimsy. With over 350 pieces, it will take some time to build the treehouse, zip wire, attic, climbing net, and more. The best part is once the building is complete, it’s time for imaginative play! Parents love when their kids are gifted LEGO sets. They’re super low maintenance and can really keep a kid’s mind busy for hours on end. Consider the mini-doll LEGO figures, Mia and Dan, their new best friends.
Arts and Crafts for Kids
“Yes, creativity is on the rise, but don’t expect a Picasso or a Pulitzer at every turn. What [7-year-olds] really want are the tools, time, and space to create – and an appreciative audience,” Green says. “Some kids will want to personalize their space and wardrobe, others to make gifts, others to write stories or act out plays.”
This craft kit contains real wood pieces for three rescue vehicles that kids can paint and assemble. The kit includes everything they need to build and customize each model. Once the paint dries, the cars are ready to be played with (the wheels really work!) or put out on display. The kit includes over 34 pieces of wood, plus glue, paint brushes, acrylic paint, and of course, stickers.
Science Toys for Kids
Green makes a timely point about the importance of science toys: “What 7-year-old wouldn’t want to make a volcano on a kitchen table? Or see how high and far a rocket can fly? Or help protect the planet?”
Oh yes, every 7-year-old needs a terrarium (or two!) to build and nurture. But this terrarium DIY kit is like no other because it glows at night! With a built-in LED light on the oxygenated lid, it will double as a nightlight, aka nighttime soother. This terrarium kit includes dreamy blue sand, nourishing soil, chia seeds, wheatgrass seeds, and whimsical mini figurines. Each day a child will get a kick out of discovering new growth, and this age is around the time where activities enjoyed become embedded in their interests for years to come. Time to nurture that green thumb!
If you know a child who collects rocks, shells, and is fascinated with discovering treasures in the dirt or sand, then they will truly enjoy this Mega Fossil Dig Kit by National Geographic. Not only does it contain a slab of sandy sediment that a curious kid can use the digging tools to make their way through, but the kit also comes with the Mega Fossil Learning Guide which will educate and inspire the dig along the way. Kids love to uncover the 15 real (yep, real!) fossils and keep them forever.
Yeah, it is possible to make science cool and this is one of the ways to do it. This hands-on, 20-piece kit contains 11 activities and seven experimental ingredients: Red cabbage powder, citric acid, baking soda, three-color tabs, crosslinked polyacrylate copolymer, vegetable oil, and corn syrup. Also included are cotton swabs, testing essentials, and traditional lab-room tools like pipettes and test tubes. This STEM toy requires a smidge of supervision, but the learning opportunities that come hand-in-hand with this Scientific Explorer activity kit will be appreciated by any 7-year-old and their supervisors!
Think these picks are genius? Us, too. Check out our other gift guides for every recipient and occasion.