As we all prepare for a holiday season like no other, you may be feeling the pressure of making this year’s celebrations extra special for your kids to provide some much needed delight after the challenges of lockdowns, school closures, and cancelled birthday parties. The annual mission of finding the perfect gift for every age—one that is both fun and educational—is coupled with thoughts of a long winter spent at home where kids need to be kept entertained for hours. For some holiday shopping inspiration, look no further!

Here are some of the top gifts for kids this holiday season, hand-curated by toy experts themselves!

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Owl Toys Paint & Pottery Set, $40

It’s time to get crafty with this at-home pottery wheel, designed to be just like the real thing! The two-in-one set includes air-drying clay, paint, two brushes and scrapers. Kids can create ceramics using the clay and then let their creativity shine by hand-painting their custom creations.

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LEGO® Star Wars™ The Child, $100

Baby Yoda captured our hearts in Star Wars: The Mandalorian and he’s now available as a 1,074 piece LEGO® set. This super cute gift idea includes easy building instructions for kids and has poseable features like ears, head, and mouth to create the many charming expressions of The Child.

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Gators in my Waders, $25

This silly, action-packed game is a fun way to encourage physical activity through gameplay. Take turns donning the oversized waders to try and catch as many of the airborne alligators as you can. Every gator caught is a step closer to victory.

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Hydraulic Cyborg Hand, $40

For STEM-lovers, this Hydraulic Cyborg Hand simulates hand movements just by using water—no need to endlessly search for batteries. The adjustable design can work for right-handed or left-handed kids (or adults who are kids-at-heart) and its jointed finger control challenges you to try different grip techniques, or even give a thumbs-up!

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Brio SmartTech Sound Action Tunnel Travel Set, $240

This 37-piece building set is a Brio classic with an interactive twist. With added SmartTech sound technology, it allows your little engineer to pre-record customizable sounds as the train swoops through the tunnel. The multicolour lights and motion, along with the engine control function, makes this track a fun and imaginative way to create your own Brio world.

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KidKraft Kensington Market Wooden Play Kitchen, $200

Encourage their creativity with this fun, spacious, vintage-inspired play kitchen. Little chefs can dream up culinary masterpieces using the charming oven with a showcase door, stovetop with realistic lights and sounds, or ice maker that dispenses play ice cubes. The Kensington Market Wooden Play Kitchen is made to love and built to last.

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Owl Toys Astronaut 4-in-1 Evolutionary Puzzle, $15

This isn’t your ordinary puzzle; the four-in-one set allows you to increase the level of difficulty based on the number of puzzle pieces that it contains – 6 pieces, 9 pieces, 12 pieces, or 16 pieces. The Evolutionary Puzzle encourages concentration, observation skills, and logical thinking. It’s totally out of this world!

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Scratch OFF World Travel Map 1000pc, $25

Welcome to a whole new world of puzzles: scratch off! Once you assemble the beautiful world map, with the world flags at the bottom, use the Scratch Off tool to begin scratching away the countries you have visited. Mount the puzzle once assembled so you and your kiddos can map out your next adventure.

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Wrebbit Harry Potter™ 3D Puzzle – The Knight Bus, $30

Looking to take your puzzle game to the next level? Try the Wrebbit3D™ puzzle! The iconic purple triple-decker bus is known for squeezing through small spaces and travelling quicker than any muggle transportation, but the real question is: how fast can you build this 280-piece Harry Potter™ 3D puzzle?

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I Promise, $25

NBA champion and cultural icon LeBron James pens a slam-dunk picture book inspired by his foundation’s I PROMISE program that motivates children everywhere to always #StriveForGreatness. Featuring James’ upbeat, rhyming text and vibrant illustrations perfectly crated for a diverse audience by New York Times bestselling artist Nina Mata, this book has the power to inspire all children and families to be their best.

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Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure, $18

From the imagination of Rowley Jefferson comes an adventure of epic proportions that will have you flipping the page to find out what happens to heroes Roland and his best friend Garg the Barbarian.

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What We’ll Build, $24

From the creator of the global phenomenon Here We Are! comes a spectacular new title. Best-selling picture-book creator and visual artist, Oliver Jeffers, dreams up a rare and enduring story about a parent’s boundless love, life’s endless opportunities, and all we need to build a future together.

For more expertly curated gift ideas, check out Mastermind Toys’ full 2020 Holiday Gift Guide. Kids can also create their own wish lists to share with friends and family coast-to-coast.

About the author: For over 35 years, Mastermind Toys has expertly curated the best in toys, books, puzzles, and games. With 68 locations coast-to-coast and a wonder-filled website, they are Canada’s Authority on Play. Mastermind Toys believes Play is Kids’ Work and that there are precious few years when every day is an opportunity to discover something new and wonderful.

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