Our son turned four this year and has dug his heels in deeply to his current hobbies, which revolve around the solar system and superheroes. I find myself being followed around by a little drill sergeant who is highly knowledgeable about things like dwarf planets and Marvel characters. He corrects my slang and asks many questions like why I would tell him that Dolly Parton is a superhero when she clearly doesn’t have a cape.
He also makes me “tea” and “smoothies” full of things I never imagined tasting good together. Still, I have been educated on his menu and have started singing a new tune (asparagus and chocolate? Why not!). Now I know better than to question him and sip loudly and merrily before a refill is swiftly provided.
The service at our four-year-old’s pop-up restaurants is impeccable, although substitutions are not tolerated. Yelpers would have a field day.
It’s complicated, being four is. Big feelings, lots of words, and a whole lot of heart. My son’s imagination impresses and inspires me every day. So, as you can imagine, many items in this gift guide already live in our house or are on his Amazon wish list. It includes things like stomp rockets and pretend supermarkets, which will take his current hobbies to a whole new level.
If your (soon-to-be) four-year-old is anything like mine, they’re going to have lots to say about their birthday wish list. So, involve them in the process!
Below are over 25 gift ideas covering every interest and every price budget. Encourage them to pick their favorite things, add them to a list (or your cart), and be sure to show us what you got on Instagram and Facebook.
Fourth Birthday Gifts Less than $25
I used to be an artsy person, but I now bristle at the idea of anything that involves a lot of cleanup—of the house, the children, or myself. So, these Ooly Chunkies Paint Sticks are right up my alley: They ease the pain of messy cleanup with the same amazing paint finish as a brush and wet paints.
This set comes with paint sticks in twelve colors, and they are easy to grip for small hands and offer hours of creative entertainment. The paint is quick-drying, so smudging is minimal, and the colors mix easily, creating new colors like magic.
They’re good for on-to-go, too, since they’re relatively small and come in a durable box. Play for hours and then easily store away until next time!
Put those stomping feet to good use with these stomp rockets! This set of four foam rockets is glow-in-the-dark, durable, and shoots up to 100 feet in the air.
While totally fine for inside, if this kid-powered toy is taken outside, you’ll really see how far the rockets can fly. They’re an excellent way to burn excess energy and teach STEM concepts—force, trajectory, and the power of science.
Put their puzzle skills to the test with this 64-piece puzzle from Mudpuppy. Once complete, kids can test their observation skills to find more than forty animals, insects, and plants shown on the border around the puzzle image.
They’ll boing, boing, boinggg for hours with this fun pogo stick made from durable foam. It comes in 13 color combinations and makes a squeaky sound every time it bounces. Not only can it be used safely inside (should you choose), but it also trains hand-eye coordination, balance, and gross motor skills.
There’s no telling what they’ll build with this set of 500 colorful, snappable beads. We have these and find them endlessly entertaining. There are multiple shapes and designs in the kit that are easy to snap together.
Watch your kiddos problem-solve as they make you a necklace and practice patterns as they piece together a crown for themselves. The big plastic jar makes cleanup a (relative) breeze!
Tea’s going green! Just maybe not in the way you might think. Young hosts can serve up a pot of tea using this tea set made from 100% recycled milk jugs.
Turn problem-solving into a colorful, rewarding work of art with Pattern Play’s vibrant wooden blocks. This puzzle introduces children to patterns and geometric concepts with wooden pieces of various shapes. They’ll develop fine motor skills and spatial relationships by replicating the patterns shown on the illustrated cards.
The blocks can also be used to create endless free-form designs, providing hours of creative play.
Add a no-mess makeup kit to their toy rotation with this 11-piece playset. The makeup bag comes with a compact (with mirror), blush, eye shadow, lipstick, nail polish, lip gloss, glitter pot, and three real brushes. Getting ready together has never been so fun!
Maybe you’ve seen this game in our Best Board Games for Kindergarteners – it’s one of our favorites for kids and adults! Players begin by drawing a card and performing the action on the card to move their game piece down the giant game board.
It sounds simple, but the genius lies in the actions on the cards, which include inventing stories about characters in silly situations, contests between players, and dramatic reenactments of animals doing zany things!
As they play, kids won’t realize all the benefits of playing the game—things like confidence, empathy, grit, and creative problem-solving.
Take this set featured in our Ultimate Dinosaur Gift Guide to the next level by hiding the dino eggs for your kiddos to find, dig up, and crack open. Inside, they’ll find one of twelve different types of dinosaurs (like a Dilophosaurus and Ankylosaurus).
Once the eggs are dug up, help your kiddos find the appropriate card describing the dino eggs and take your dino knowledge to new heights.
Your little helper wants to be just like you, so get them the gear they need! This Ergobaby Doll Carrier is made from 100% cotton canvas and comes in ten different patterns. It has thick, padded shoulder and waist straps and is machine-washable.
Your little one will love having their baby or stuffy snuggled up close!
Fourth Birthday Gifts Less than $75
The Obuby walkie talkies are not just a fun gift for kids. They are also an excellent bridge of communication with parents and friends. Shorten the distance between each other and bring endless hours of fun and happy childhood memories!
These easy-to-use walkies are perfect for the playground, travel, outdoor adventures, hide and seek, and wherever your kiddos’ adventures take them.
We particularly like this brand because it allows kids to talk without pushing the “talk” button, which is great while kids learn how to use them. They also come in sets of two or three, depending on your needs. Just don’t forget the batteries!
They’ve read many books by now, so take reading to the next level by making a book together. IlluStory is a complete kit for writing, illustrating, and publishing a hardcover book. Your child’s imagination will come to life through the fun and educational process of making their own book.
The included guidebook will take your little one through the process of creating and writing their own story. The kit consists of twenty book pages, two cover pages, a washable marker set, and a prepaid envelope.
Send in their creation, and 2-3 weeks later, they’ll receive one professionally printed, full-color 7 x 9-inch hardcover book. That will be a happy mail day, indeed.
Kinetic Sand is a fool-proof kid-pleaser, and this kit is the motherlode of fun. It includes 4.5 pounds of sand in five colors, over ten tools, and molds play with and transfer the sand.
Mix, cut, scoop, shape, and squish to make fun new designs! Or mix two or more sands together to create new colors! Endless sensory play.
Watch their imaginations soar with these hand-dyed silk wings. Stretchy arm loops allow littles to easily put them on and take them off themselves. The wings are comfortable and beautifully colored in a versatile rainbow hue. Whether they’re a fairy or a butterfly, they’ll be on their way to hours of fun.
This rainbow-hued, 100-piece STEM building set is geared up for a good time! Different every time they build, this versatile, interconnecting gear set fosters imagination and provides opportunities to experiment with simple mechanics and science.
It teaches kids about sorting, grouping, counting, designing, constructing, and putting physics into play with spinning gear movement.
Gym fun anywhere! Your child can jump, tumble and summersault on this rainbow-colored tumbling mat. It has a foam fill that will provide your little one a safe place to land as they practice cheerleading, martial arts, or gymnastics. Folds flat for easy storage.
An on-the-go cuddle buddy that doubles as a hoodie? Too cute to resist!
Each Cubcoat has a unique strength to share. They’re the best friend you can take anywhere! There’s agile Tomo the Tiger, adventurous Bori the Bear, creative Flynn the Fox, kind Papo the Panda, sweet Kali the Kitty, curious Pimm the Puppy, and more.
They each have a story and a favorite snack, and they all want to come along wherever your kiddo takes them.
For a kid, nothing compares to a fort! With this kids’ fort building kit, set them loose to create the fort of their dreams. Just attach the poles to the connector balls, then cover with a blanket for hours of fun.
The kit comes with 75 sticks and 45 connector balls. From a rocket to a cave, and a play tent to a tunnel, they’ll be able to create any fort they can imagine.
Hot Wheels always delivers on fun, and this track set is no exception. It has four intersecting crash zones and a car feeder ramp for nonstop action!
Racers can line up their Hot Wheels cars and let ’em rip for near misses or total wipeouts. With more than 16 feet of track with hairpin turns, motorized boosters, and a giant crash zone, your kiddos’ creativity will be in its highest gear.
American Girl dolls have been around for multiple generations, and they continue to be loved by kids the world over! The WellieWishers is a sweet and silly group of girls who have the same big, bright wish: to be a good friend. These dolls are smaller than the original dolls (14″ vs. 18″), making them great starter dolls for younger kids.
There are five WellieWisher dolls and lots of accessories, so you’ll be sure to find the perfect companion for your little one.
Encourage your tiny sous chef’s love of food with this gender-neutral cooking and baking set! Everything they need is here, including an apron, measuring cups and measuring spoons, a kitchen timer, a rolling pin, kid-friendly nylon knives, cooking utensils, and a cutting board. Plus, a convenient storage case to keep everything together is included too.
This set is cute as a toy, but this is a working set they can really use in the kitchen with you—put them in their Little Helper and have them help you with dinner tonight!
This kids’ digital camera takes real photos and videos but is durable enough to handle drops and tumbles. Kids will love the 70+ cartoon and collage effects for pictures and playing with the rear-facing camera for selfies.
Save memories with downloadable videos and photos using the camera’s internal memory or use a microSD card (sold separately) to store more.
Fourth Birthday Gifts Over $75
Kids will love creating their own 3-10 minute stories with this super-fun audio device. They’ll select an object, setting, hero, and secondary character (kind of like Mad Libs!) and listen as their one-of-a-kind story unfolds. There are 48 stories inside the Storyteller plus six free “Sweet Dreams” stories available to download for free from the Luniistore.
The common theme with four-year-olds is they want to be just like you, so get them the ultimate baby stroller for their dolls and stuffed animals and creatures of all kinds: the Joovy Caboose Doll Stroller.
This doll stroller fits up to three (yes, three!) dolls – one in the front seat, one on the rear bench, and one on the stand-on platform. Even better, you can also buy a matching toy infant car seat to turn this stroller into a travel system!
It’s more fun and realistic than any other toy stroller set we’ve found and it will be sure to make the neighbors smile when they see you out on your family walks.
If you haven’t introduced your four-year-old to magnetic building blocks, now is the time! The Magna-Tiles Metropolis Set has 110-pieces of neon, rainbow-hued building fun. It has standard building blocks plus a spinner, windows, quarter circles, two cars, doors, windows, and stars.
Whether they decide to build a busy high-rise metropolis or a thriving colony in space, there’s no stopping their imaginations with this set. This set is compatible with all original Magna-Tiles building sets, so their collection can continue to grow!
The fact remains that you can never go wrong with a beanbag. We love all seating options from PBK, and the anywhere beanbag is no exception. Choose from a patterned fabric, cozy animals, fluffy faux fur, and a whole variety of other options to help them lounge in style. Some even glow in the dark!
Plus, all slipcovers zip off and are machine washable. And at this age, we promise you, that’s a necessity.
This kid-sized grocery store from Melissa & Doug will provide hours and hours of shopping fun! It’s big enough for multiple kids and has many fun features like a hand-cranked conveyor belt, bagging area, credit card machine, realistic beeping scanner, and a cash drawer.
A few key features set this playhouse apart from others: its working doorbell, mailbox, and clicker phone are just a few. Featuring large serving windows with a café-style canopy and two chalkboards to display the day’s menu, the Oceanfront Playhouse creates the ultimate destination for kids.
Built with 100% cedar lumber that’s treated with a child-friendly stain, this playhouse is designed to be aesthetically beautiful and durable, so little ones can have big fun for years to come.
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