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Good educational holiday gifts for a 4 year old

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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:01 PM
Original message
Good educational holiday gifts for a 4 year old
Our daughter is almost 4 years old (she turns 4 less than 2 months after the holiday season)

I would prefer things that are generally gender-neutral - games, books, software, other toys - that are also at least somewhat educational. She loved a "Reader Rabbit" preschool-level game that we got for our computer early this year.

I'd appreciate any ideas, as it's only a month until that holiday we're having a war on...

Thanks
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flvegan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. I hear that Tickle Me Elmo XTreme!!! is pretty popular.
You should call every store and ask if there's one available for sale. The folks working there love it.
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Left Is Write Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:24 PM
Response to Reply #1
17. You are so evil.
:o
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Left Is Write Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:28 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. Moved.
Edited on Tue Nov-21-06 08:31 PM by Left Is Write
edited because apparently, I need an educational toy to teach me where to put my posts at DU.
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MissB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:06 PM
Response to Original message
2. hmmmm
Well, I have boys who love to build and learn so we're all about erector sets and science kits. However, I've found lots of wonderful gifts at our local science museum gift shop. Similar items can be found online at Highlights.com.

We really liked the butterfly garden kit. I think my youngest was 5 when we got that though. http://www.highlights.com/jump.jsp?itemID=1269&itemType...
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Lyric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:09 PM
Response to Original message
3. V-Smile plus games
My little boy got his when he was four, and he loves it. All the games are educational too.
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GirlinContempt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:21 PM
Response to Original message
4. I've had good luck with most of this stuff
Edited on Tue Nov-21-06 01:25 PM by GirlinContempt
the website sucks however
http://www.apii.com/toy_box.asp

I wish The Explore Store had a site.

edit:
I want an 'i dig dinosaur' kit, and also a Curiosity Oh Noooo Volcano kit. I loved that stuff when I was a kid.
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ghostsofgiants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:30 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. I always wanted the I Dig Dinosaur kit when I was little.
Not sure why I never got one. The I Dig Treasure one seems fun too. Some good ARRR-rated fun. </bad pirate pun>
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. Thanks, I'll check it out. How about something like this?
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GirlinContempt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:58 PM
Response to Reply #7
13. Well, it's neither educational nor non-gender specific
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #13
24. well, if she learns dancing
it's educational, no?
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Divameow77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
6. I just bought my 4 year old
the Handheld Leapster, he loves it. From the research I have done, the Leapster is sooo much better then V-Smile, check out Amazon, there are a ton of reviews for each there.
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:14 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. Thanks
I think we got her a Leap Pad last year and she liked it, but we always had trouble keeping the right books & cartridges together.
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SOteric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:18 PM
Response to Original message
9. Crayons.
Even Einstein knew that "Imagination is more important than knowledge."
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:24 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. she's got a ton of crayons
well, maybe not a ton... a few pounds at least.

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LostinVA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:25 PM
Response to Original message
11. A book -- seriously
There are lots of great interesting nd interactive books for children.
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jmowreader Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 04:26 PM
Response to Original message
12. A snare drum and a copy of Haskell Harr's Drum Method...
is a gift that is sure to please.
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LeftyMom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 05:03 PM
Response to Original message
14. Wooden trains (Thomas, Brio, etc) are a good toy since they integrate building with large and small
movements. Sports toys are good for large motor skills, art things and dollhouses are great for fine motor skills. Kids of that age really like dress-up items as well.

Kids that age will learn with any well-made toy, it's not really needed or developmentally appropriate to get something that will stuff them full of facts when what they really need is something to help them explore their world in an age-appropriate, primarily tactile, way.
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SoyCat Donating Member (660 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 06:59 PM
Response to Original message
15. I loved my wooden US states puzzle. Each state was a
puzzle piece which was marked with a star and the capital. I got it when I was four.
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:25 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. good idea
she already has a couple of map puzzles that are a few states together, so maybe 15-20 pieces for the entire US... that seems like the next logical step.
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YDogg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:40 PM
Response to Reply #15
21. yeah, but rhode island is a choking hazard
;-)

I had one of those, too, and loved it. I seriously think it sparked my interest in travel. And stuff.
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 07:21 PM
Response to Original message
16. Try Hearthsong
http://hearthsong.com/hearthsong/welcome.asp?sc=1005&bo...

My 16 year old and I still pour over the catalog everytime it comes.
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Left Is Write Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:30 PM
Response to Original message
20. Puzzles. Puzzles are fun, challenging, exciting...
good for thought and reasoning, spatial skills, and hand-eye coordination. :)

My kids have always loved workbooks, word searches, dot-to-dots, and other activity books. Children's atlases can be fun also.

Other ideas:

Dominoes
Brain Play or JumpStart computer games
Lincoln logs
Paints
Checkers
Dress-up dolls with lots of buttons, snaps and zippers
Paper dolls
Magna-Doodle or Etch-a-Sketch
Chicken Socks craft kits
Kaleidoscope
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CharmCity Donating Member (202 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 08:58 PM
Response to Original message
22. Animals!!
Not real ones... when my daughter was four I got her a "wilderness rescue team" set -- seven small plastic jungle animals, two vets, an ambulance, a tent, a jeep, etc. The *hours* we spent playing with that set!!! On the floor. In the yard. In the bathtub. On trips. She's six now, and still plays with them. $17.99.

Two others popular toys then were a toy grocery cart and fake food, and a kiddy recorder/tape player.

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CharmCity Donating Member (202 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 09:12 PM
Response to Original message
23. Everything's educational when you're 4....
it's what kind of education you want the kid to have!!
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firefox_fan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 11:34 PM
Response to Original message
25. Some type of lego?
These days they have all cool types.
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Telly Savalas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-21-06 11:58 PM
Response to Original message
26. Check out Mastermind Toys
www.mastermindtoys.com

I'm not sure if they ship stuff to Murka, but it might give you some ideas.
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-22-06 08:19 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. Thanks - some good stuff
And, since they have an American flag next to the prices, I would assume they ship here.

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