The best toys that kids won't outgrow

Stephanie Faris


Kids grow up fast. You can guarantee that whatever you buy this Christmas will be forgotten in a pile by next year. If you glance around your house, though, you'll likely find a few toys with staying power. If you're looking at big-ticket items this holiday season, you may want to narrow it down to things that will survive into the new year and beyond. Even if you're buying lower-priced items, a toy that lasts can be worth its weight in gold.

We've pulled together a list of gifts--both classic and modern--that will take your kids from childhood, into adolescence, and beyond.


Drones are all the rage, and the best part is you can enjoy them at any age. You'll need to provide supervision in their younger years, but by the time they reach adolescence, they'll be ready to take the controls. The Holy Stone F181G Drone is recommended for kids ages 12 and up and includes a WiFi-ready video camera, allowing you to watch its travels. If you're willing to supervise a little longer, the Yuneec Typhoon H RTF Hexacopter Drone is equipped with the latest technology.

Board Games

Board games can follow someone from childhood to adulthood, provided there are older family members to help young players. Classics like Monopoly and Life will span multiple years, although elementary school-age children may prefer kid-geared games like Candy Land. You should also consider games for the family to play together, such as Exploding Kittens and Scattergories. If your family spans multiple age ranges, you may find that playing a game geared toward older players can be a fun way for younger players to learn.

E-Readers and Tablets

It's never been easier to be a bookworm. You can buy e-readers and tablets to hold all the books you can afford. Better yet, hook up your library card and download free books through one of the apps that support it, such as OverDrive. However, it's important to note that not every tablet can play apps. If you're going for a basic e-reader like the basic Kindle, for instance, you'll lose the ability to download apps for free. But, you have the benefit of giving your kids a device that will only let them read, not play games. Otherwise, there are plenty of tablets that will support OverDrive and play apps, including the Fire HD 10 Tablet and the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition.

VR Headsets

It's an exciting time to be a kid. Your little ones can put on a headset and travel the world, step into a video game, or participate in sports. Virtual reality (VR) headsets appeal to kids of all ages, though you may need to help your youngest children. The HTC VIVE Virtual Reality System is one of the best, featuring precision movement tracking and a 360-degree controller. If you're looking to start with something a little more affordable, you can purchase a Samsung SM-R323NBKAXAR headset for your Galaxy smartphone and let your kids give VR a try.

Table Games

If you're trying to break the habit of everyone in your family being on screens 24/7, table games may be a great start. A foosball or pool table will offer decades of fun, whether you're just killing time on a cold winter weekend or entertaining guests. The KICK Foosball Table or Fat Cat 7-Foot Billiard/Pool Game Table will be a great addition to your bonus room. If you're strapped for space, you can purchase a tabletop foosball table that you can put in storage when it's not in use.

Gaming Consoles

One toy a kid will never outgrow is a gaming console. You can have a little fun by introducing your children to the games you played growing up, including the Super NES Classic edition or the Retro-Bit Super Retro-Cade Plug and Play Game Console. And you can't go wrong with modern favorites like the Nintendo Switch or the PlayStation 4 Pro 1TB Console.

Model Kits

Building models is fun for kids of all ages, from childhood through retirement. With a model kit, you can introduce your children to the fun of putting together cars, boats, planes and more. The USS Constitution Ship Build Your Own Boat In A Bottle Model Kit lets you build your own tiny boat in a bottle. If aviation is more in line with your family's interests, try the Guillow's P51 Mustang Laser Cut Model Kit, and build a faithful replica of a real U.S. Air Force plane.


Stephanie Faris is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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