Holiday Shopping Guide for Healthy Child Development

Fostering a healthy understanding of gift giving and receiving during the holiday season is exceptionally challenging. We all want to spoil the children in our  — especially during the holidays. However, it’s important that we do not act on this urge and are very selective about what we purchase during the holiday season.

The reality is that many children already have everything they need and are making holiday lists for the sole purpose of making lists — because we all dream of getting every toy we can imagine. However, many of the gifts under the tree might not be opened or even used in the next year.  Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or anything else, this guide can be a helpful tool while shopping for the children in your life, and worth sharing with your loving family members who may go “gift crazy”.

  1. Something they really want

Most children have a Hot Ticket Item or something at the top of their list for which they have been asking for quite some time. Yes! Get it! But don’t get all of those items. Pick one or two max!

  1. Something they need

Holidays are a great time to think ahead to the rest of the year.  Will your child need something over the spring or summer months such as sports equipment. For pre teens and teenagers, this is a great time for gift cards for haircuts, manicures, or maybe even a gym membership.  All of these things add up throughout the year, and this is a way to start teaching your child financial responsibility.

  1. Something to wear

The holidays are a great time to buy something that is not typical for you to pay for throughout the year. Maybe a particular brand item or accessory that your child really wants.

  1. Something to read

Keep your child’s brain working. Books, magazine subscription, trivial games, puzzles, are all really great gifts. If your child is not the “reading” type, think about audio books or audio book gift cards. This is a great way to foster an interest in reading without making it a chore.

  1. Something to do

Kids are always complaining they a board or have their heads berried in electronics. Get them out of the house. Movie tickets, bowling pass, laser tag pass, paint ball pass, water Park or amusement park pass, or even museum passes are a great way to keep your child active, away from electronics and out of the house.

  1. A keepsake or something sentimental

This is a great opportunity for you to foster the value of sentiment for your child. Try making your child something from your heart. An ornament, blanket, photo album, scrapbook or even a hand written letter are all exceptionally special gifts that give for years to come.  Don’t worry if your not creative, there are tons of sites that can help you make everything from calendars to photo books to phone cases that look perfect.

  1. Something for the family

This is a great opportunity to give your child a gift that the entire family can enjoy. Whether it is a DVD for family movie night, a board game, or a pool toy it is important that your child learns that their gifts are not just for them and are meant to be shared.

  1. Give them the gift of giving back

Let and teach your child give a gift to someone less fortunate. Whether they purchase a gift for another child and wrap it themselves, volunteer, or even make a gift, it is important to foster this value when your child is young. Giving to others helps build gratitude, compassion, and empathy as they develop.