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Looking for a gift for a kindergartener? Five-year-olds start to become truly social at this age and love group play and games, so the best gifts for 5-year-olds include classic board games.
“They’re starting to grow out of their egocentrism, so they’re able to understand another’s perspective. They’re more understanding of taking turns and not winning all the time,” said Marie Conti, the head of The Wetherill School in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, and a board member of the American Montessori Society.
Once they've left age 4 and enter age 5, they start school with new challenges but also more focus, which helps them conquer fine motor tasks and complicated physical activities.
“They are testing out skills that have gotten stronger as they grow,” said Tovah Klein, director of the Barnard College Center for Toddler Development and author of “How Toddlers Thrive.”
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- Best-selling gifts for 5-year-olds
- Best arts and crafts gifts for 5-year-olds
- Best games and toys for 5-year-olds
- Best books for 5-year-olds
Don’t forget to check out Shop TODAY’s 2020 Gift Guide to find the perfect present for everyone on your list!
Best-selling gifts for 5-year-olds
Art projects and craft kits promote fine motor skills and creativity.
More complicated puzzles and building with smaller toys are appealing now, according to Klein.
Five-year-olds should also read non-fiction, like this fact-packed book about sharks, a follow-up to the best-seller "Everything Awesome About Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Beasts."
Emerging readers can create their own stories with these ready-made building blocks.
Making slime with this simple kit from Elmer's is an easy rainy day activity for your little one.
Best arts and crafts and creative gifts for 5-year-olds
Unlock your child's creativity with all the arts and crafts tools they could ever need!
Five-year-olds are ready for more advanced art projects (and scissors).
All the creativity and fun of slime, with less mess.
Promote literacy with favorite quotes or phrases that kids can arrange themselves.
These coloring rolls come complete with crayons and 10 feet of coloring to allow for hours of play.
Let creativity come in three dimensions with this beginner's 3D pen that does not get hot to the touch.
This subscription box for kids arrives with recipes and tools to help kids get active in the kitchen.
Best games and toys for 5-year-olds
For Lego lovers, this set takes building to a different dimension.
Your little builder can create elaborate marble runs with these pieces that combine in any direction they can imagine.
This classic game requires a bit of strategizing during playtime.
This Monopoly game is downsized from the old-fashioned favorite.
Put those Legos away stylishly with containers from Ikea that allow kids to build on top of the box, too.
Conti likes American Girl dolls for this age. These smaller versions are good for 5-year-olds.
Lottie dolls come with a variety of hobbies and interests. This tooth fairy doll is a nice choice for a child just entering the tooth-wiggling age.
Klein and Conti both recommended sports equipment and other toys that promote physical activity, especially for boys, who Conti said “seem to have way more physical energy” at this stage.
Mini-figures and accessories encourage storytelling during playtime.
These horses and figures foster creative play.
Conti loved construction sets for 5-year-olds. This one from Brackitz allows children to create zip-lines, cranes or elevators.
Five-year-olds love a snuggly stuffed animal, and flip sequins give this an extra touch of interest.
Best books for 5-year-olds
What would happen if a crow that could fly got together with a crab that could pinch noses? Well, they'd be unstoppable. This hilarious take on teamwork will keep 5-year-olds and their parents giggling.
“Continuing with storybooks is important, because enjoying the story is a really big part of learning to read,” said Nina Lindsay, president of the Association for Library Service to Children.
Two little girls are new friends, and maybe best friends, in this lyrical celebration of a childlike discovery of the magic of friendship.
A red balloon comes to bear from the sky. When his claws get the better of it, he thinks he's a bad bear but takes comfort from the moon and his memories.
Emerging readers can celebrate 50 years of Frog and Toad with this commemorative edition of a classic.
This early reader uses a graphic novel format, which helps beginning readers follow along and stay engaged in the story.
Hippo just can't get Sharko's commands right in this book of silly wordplay.
A girl who draws not-quite-perfect circles makes them into a panda, and makes that panda her own in this celebration of the creative spirit.
This rhyming story of a scarecrow with an unexpected attachment to a baby crow will resonate with children and their parents.
Kids familiar with the hilarious "The Book With No Pictures" can create their own version.
The good egg tries to keep everyone in line, until he starts to crack under the pressure. This funny follow-up to “The Bad Seed” is an early lesson in self-care.
Still looking for the perfect gift? Be sure to check out Shop TODAY’s 2020 Gift Guide to shop for everyone on your list, including:
- Gifts for babies
- Gifts for 1-year-olds
- Gifts for 2-year-olds
- Gifts for 3-year-olds
- Gifts for 4-year-olds
- Gifts for 6-year-olds
- Gifts for 7-year-olds
- Gifts for 8-year-olds
This gift guide was originally published on Nov. 22, 2017.