Last week, Stimey asked on Twitter for gift ideas for a 9-year-old boy. She was asking for a birthday, but the holidays are coming up. I’ve had two 9-year-old boys so far, and they do vary from boy to boy, but here are some of the things that have been successes:
Magic tricks (photo from Amazon.com). If you can’t stand the “Mom, look at this! …Oh, wait. Okay, now look! …Oh, wait. Okay, NOW,” it’s a great gift.
Sculpey modeling compound (photo from Amazon.com). This is Play-Doh for big kids: it’s significantly more expensive, but is also better to work with for fine details, and it doesn’t set until it’s baked. At our house the rule is that we make BIG things with Play-Doh, and we use Sculpey for small, careful projects.
Shapelock (photo from Shapelock.com). This is not the most intriguing photo, but this stuff is AWESOME. It’s this hard plastic stuff, and when you put it in warm water it softens like modeling compound. And when it cools, it’s back to being hard plastic. We first bought the sample (it’s free, but with $5 shipping, so I find it happier to think of it as a $5 sample with free shipping), and liked it so much we bought the biggest tub of it. The sample is enough to give as a small gift, since the big tub is a lot of money if you’re not sure if the child will like it.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid books (photo from Amazon.com). All the books in this series are good, but I’m highlighting the journal-style one because normally I don’t think of journals as good gifts for boys, but this is one William saved his OWN MONEY for. When my boy-girl twins are older, I plan to do one birthday where Elizabeth gets a diary with a lock, and Edward will get this Boy Journal.
Plasma ball (photo from Amazon.com). My dad chose this gift for the boys, and it was the hit of the party both times. It’s one of those things where when you touch the globe, “lightning” goes from the center to your finger.
Rock hammer (photo from Amazon.com). I don’t mind telling you that this gift scares the everloving frock off of me. I don’t even like the LOOK of it. But Paul chose it for William’s 9th birthday, and William has spent many, MANY happy hours shattering rocks in the driveway. We also got him multiple pairs of safety goggles, and a jeweler’s loupe for looking up-close. Scariest Best gift ever.
Rubik’s Twist (photo from Amazon.com). My first boy liked Rubik’s Cubes, but my second boy found them frustrating. He had a lot more fun with the Twist, which doesn’t need to be solved and can just be played with.
Chemistry set (photo from Amazon.com). This is one of William’s ideas, which we decided NOT to get him—but we’re reconsidering for Christmas. I was worried about two things: (1) He’d find as boring as I found my own childhood chemistry set, and/or (2) he’d take the finish right off the table with it.