Gifts for Tween-age Kids (9-12 years) kids are independent learners and on verge of becoming teenagers.  By 8 or 9 years most children are reading well enough to follow instructions, their fine motor and problem solving skills are well developed and they have a growing understanding of how the world around them works.  Tween-agers need challenge with more complex puzzles and science toys and kits. Gifts for boys and gifts for girls can be a challenge as a tween-age kid is still interested in being a kid as well as in being a grown-up.  The good news is they like almost everything!   It can be an overwhelming choice if you have no idea what to buy.   There are still great toys, books and games for tween-agers to keep them playing like the kids they are.  Novelty and crafty gifts are likely to be popular.  Most Girls like jewellery, stationary and art/craft sets. Most boys still like construction sets, electronic games and remote control cars.  Encourage kids to get outdoors and active with outdoor toys and choose stimulating and interesting gifts.


$0 – $20 (approximately)



:  Certain brands of stationary, both for boys and girls and are very popular at the moment and there is so much novelty items in stationary now, the choice is endless for both girls and boys, they will love taking them to school.  A browse through your stationary section of any major store and you will see that stationary is no longer just plain paper and pens.  Novelty puzzle erasers (like Gomu), Giant Erasers, glitter pens and glue, huge novelty pencil cases, erasable pens and the list goes on. A collection of novelty stationary items in a gift bag, basket or even a stationary storage container, would make a perfect gift for the tween-ager.


Scrapbooking setArt and Craft Sets/Materials

:  There is a great range of craft kits available some choices are Scrapbooking Kits; Clay Modelling Kits; Learn to Knit Kits; Bead Rings; Jewellery box decorating, basic sewing;  handmade cards;  weaving;  crochet;  origami kits;  rock polishing kits;  leather crafts;  card-making kits;  clay-making;  design-a-cup/bowl/plate;  Pottery Wheel Set (kids style);  mosaics;  plaster of paris moulding kit and that’s to name only some!


Crystal MiningScience Kits
:  include crystal making;  volcano making;  slime-making; bath bomb making;  chemistry sets to a microscope set.




Field Guide to Australian ReptilesBooks:

time to get them interested in  a series to get them hooked on reading for life (see Book Essentials in the Kidsgiftguide to books) or books about weird and wacky things to appeal to their sense of humour or perhaps to build up knowledge about a hobby.  See Kidsgiftguide to Books for more suggestions.



Hair AccessoriesFashion and Accessories (one just for the girls)

: Hair accessories, come in all pretty colours and styles;

:  Shoe Jewels – stick on or clip-on jewels to put on shoes.


Jewellery setJewellery (another one for the girls)

:  Most girls love pretty shiny things to wear.  You can even get personalised Jewellery with a letter or the name of that special someone.  A watch and matching jewellery set for a special gift.



MicrophoneNovelty Items:

Talking Clock; Slinky;  Microphone; Penguin Drinker;  Sea-Monkeys; Yo-Yos;  Frisbees;  binoculars; or even a set of bongo drums; projecting torch.  Kids this age also love personalised gifts with their name on it.


Led FrisbeeLED Frisbee ($39.95) for frisbee fun day or night with a press of a switch.  The long-life LED illuminates the entire disc and comes in four bright colours.




Pocket KitePocket Kite ($11.95) great for all ages, these compact kites are 45 centimetres in diameter and zip into a handy pocket pack.





Magic 8 BallMagic 8 Ball  : Bouncing Magic 8 Ball.  The Magic bouncing 8 Ball is a hollow sphere resembling an oversized 8 ball. Inside a 20 faced die floats around in liquid which has an affirmative, negative or non-committal statement printed on it. There is a transparent window on the bottom of the ball through which to read these messages.

To use the ball, hold it with the window facing down; ask the ball your yes or no question and then turn the ball so the window faces up. You will then be able to read your answer.

So now that the mechanics of this magic 8 ball are understood, let’s get on to the fun part, which is asking this ball your list of burning questions! Hopefully it will give you the answer you’re looking for!

If not then don’t worry, they say it takes around 72 questions for all the 8 balls 20 answers to appear once so you’ll get the answer you want eventually!


Sea MonkeysSeaMonkeys

:Live Sea-Monkeys hatch before your eyes by simply putting the live Sea Monkey eggs in water and watch them grow. The Sea-Monkeys range includes everything you need to grow, feed and entertain your Sea-Monkeys.



MarblesOld Fashioned Fun

:  Some games might be old fashioned, but there is a reason they have held their charm,  Marble games for instance.


1000 piece puzzle1000 Plus Piece Puzzles and 3-D Puzzles

:  Puzzles have come along way.  There are ones you can turn into a framed picture and ones that you make in 3D.  Check out the puzzle isle of your local toy department or store.


$20 – $50 (approximately)



The Original Spiro-graph

:  The classic drawing toy, was created by mechanical engineer, Denys Fisher – the Spiro-graph, originally a drafting tool, was an instant hit in the toy world. It’s been fascinating people ever since its first introduction in 1965.

Beautiful, intricate designs are made from the motion of gears around wheels, allows anyone to draw elegant artistic designs and pictures.  Encourages fine motor skills, creativity and critical thinking.


Themed LegoConstruction Kits

:  Meccanno, Constructor, Classic Lego sets or Lego Themed sets such as Star Wars or Batman.



Car Garage and trackCar Racing Set

:  Range in all shapes and sizes, as well as speed.



Cage Bingo SetCage Bingo

:  Just like bingo, except with a spinning cage to mix the numbered balls.  Good fun for entertaining a group of kids.



Speedcell soccer ballAdidas Speed Cell Soccer Ball ($40) has a 3-D panel shaping and aerodynamic grooves.





Totem TennisTotem Tennis/Tetherball

:  An old favourite, but always popular, good fun for all the family.  Totem tennis is a soft tennis ball attached to a long string (no more fetching stray tennis balls) and the ball is hit with a small tennis style racket.  Tetherball is a soft soccer ball attached to a long string, where you kick the ball.


Cricket setOutdoor Active Sporting Kits

:  Tennis Rackets;  Croquet Set;  Bocci Set;  Badminton; Soccer  Set; Cricket Set;  (under supervision only and there are sporting sets that are made with foam are available too for a safer option).



Outdoor Toys (always popular): Junior Tennis Set Junior Tennis Set comes with a net, two balls and two rackets ($25)





Magic KitMagic Kits

:  For the magician, or one who wants to be.




ChessBoard Games and other games

:  Chess, Checkers, Battleship, Monopoly, Connect 4, Scrabble, Blokus, Twister to name a few.



Kids Cooking SetCooking set and cook book

:  Cooking gifts can include baking sets; popcorn makers;   milkshake makers;  slushie/snowcone makers.




Milkshake MakerMilkshake Maker

:  For the budding chef or just for fun, make your own flavoured milkshake or smoothie.




Popcorn MakerPopcorn Maker

:  Great for movie nights or a simple snack, don’t forget to include the dried popcorn kernals.



Ice crusherIce-maker/Slushie Maker

:  Great for the warmer months, just need water and cordial for flavour.




Jewellery MakingFashion Accessories Kits

:   Make your own Jewellery set;  Hair bands and accessories making Kit;  Friendship Bracelet Making Kit; Bead Ring Kit



Scrapbooking setScrapbooking Kits

:  provide some photos from their last holiday or party and a scrapbooking kit to make a keepsake that will provide lots of memories.



CD playerBoom Box

:  CD player and radio range in colours and styles to suit your tween-ager.



Water SeesawPool Toys

:  Pool toys range from inflatable tyres to water seasaws.



Explorer Camping Set


Explorer Set

:  Great for the outdoors, a camping or hiking trip –  an explorer set can include binoculars, compass, torch and magnifier.




$50 – $100 (approximately)

Remote control helicopterRemote control vehicles: Remote control vehicles, such as cars, trucks, helicopters, planes  range in price depending on brand and abilities – always a favourite for younger and older kids, includes Scalextrix and ATX racing cars and track.


SkateboardSkateboards (and essential safety gear)

:  Included here are “Rip-Sticks” which are self-propelling, some even come motorised. The Rip-Stick Caster Board brings the carving thrill of surfing and snowboarding to dry land in a compact size.  Its unique twisting motion moves you forward with out ever pushing off the ground.  Needless to say, but we will anyway – safety gear is essential.


Boogie BoardsBoogie board for the beach

:  Boogie boards come in different shapes and sizes.  Choose a board that will not be bigger than the child riding it so they will be able to manange it themselves.



:  Tween-agers are becoming aware of their appearance and may appreciate fashion items, a special dress or perhaps their favourite sporting group t-shirt or jersey.




:   Cameras come in different colours to suit different personalities.



Camping TentCamping Gear

: Camping gear can include a tent;  camping chair; sleeping bag;  battery or solar operated torch/lamp.



KaraokeKaraoke Machine

:  These range in size and price.



LavaLampRoom Accessories

:  World globe light; ; novelty light such as a lava lamp;  disco ball light; aquarium light; galaxy or fairy lights; plasma ball light etc.




Basket ball hoopBasketball or Netball hoop

:  You can get Hoops and boards to either install on a stable wall or they come free-standing as well.



$100 +  (approximately)



:   (for the star gazer or tomorrow’s astronaut).




Pool tableGames Tables

Pool table/Table Tennis/Air Hockey/Foosball Games tables range in price depending on size and quality.  Best to work out if there is room for it first before buying.  Some Games tables come with 2 games or 4 games in one.

Air Hockey





GuitarMusical Instruments

:  Musical Instruments are a great way for kids to learn about music, keep in mind that with buying a musical instrument it must come with lessons.



Portable DVD playerPortable DVD player

:  Portable Dvd players are great for long trips.



Softboard (Surfboard)Surf Board/Softboard

:  Surf Boards for beginners are made lighter using a light special foam material but are durable. These softboards are great for first time surfers and for kids surfboards.



TrampolineTrampoline with safety net.




WiiHigh Tech

:  Wii/Playstation; Nintendo DS/Ipod Touch;  mp3 player (keep in mind your tween-agers ears and protect them from damage with noise-reducing earphones); electronic games (age-appropriate).



Inline skatesInline Skates and Safety Gear




BicycleBicycle and helmet




Green machineThe Tri Wheel Slider or Green Machine

:  The Tri Wheel Slider features 50cm Pneumatic front tyre for traction and slick rear wheels for sliding, drifting or 360 degree turns.  You would need a safe area to use this equipment and a helmet.



Powerwings (2)Scooters and safety gear

:  Power-wing scooters are 3 wheeled and self-propel  The Power-wing scooter features dual inclined castors, which allow for turning, and acceleration without having to push from the ground for lots of fun on concrete areas.



Adopt a TigerGifts for a Cause

:  Many of todays tween-agers are environmentally and socially aware.  Your tween might appreciate a gift that supports a worthy cause.  Some suggestions include Adopt a Species (World Wildlife Fund) where they receive a plush animal representing their adoptive species and other materials supporting their cause.  There are many good causes your tween may be interested in supporting.


Special MemoryA Special Memory:  Some examples include show or concert tickets; dinner and movie;  bowling; a visit to an  amusement park; a shopping trip; rock climbing at the local YMCA;  a visit to a game arcade;  a fishing trip.  Think of the tween-agers interests when choosing the experience.