A tablet or video game console already made the cut, so why not add one more gift to Santa’s list---something that will make your kid healthier and more active this year and beyond? Here, check out 10 new Christmas gifts for kids, all with a boost of healthy and fun.
1. Pure Fun Ladybug Jumper
Kids will get a great cardio workout and improve their balance and coordination with the Pure Fun Ladybug Jumper ($129.99, JamzProducts.com). The mini trampoline brings the fun of an outdoor version indoors with a padded handrail and covered springs. The soft ladybug face cover detaches and can be used as a pillow.
2. Let’s Play! Game Box
When your kids are stuck at home on a snow day, get them moving with the Let’s Play! Game Box ($29.99). With eight classic games like Red Light, Green Light and Capture the Flag, your kid will have fun and stay fit. Available at Lakeshore Learning Stores and LakeshoreLearning.com.
3. Kidliga Dishware
Kids will be excited to eat their vegetables with their own Kidliga dishware set ($49.95, Livligahome.com). The set uses visual cues to show portion sizes and the accompanying book, Sammie & Sax in the Land of Quinoa: The Search for a Balanced Meal teaches kids about healthy eating and includes recipes and a teaching guide.
4. Zumba Kids and Kinect
Make exercise fun especially during the cold winter months with Zumba Kids for Wii and Kinect for Xbox 360 ($29.99). The game motivates kids to stay engaged with fun routines, kid-friendly music, engaging mini-games and creative modes. Available at Target, Walmart, Best Buy, GameStop, and Amazon.com.
5. The Buoy by Turnstone
Studies show that movement can improve learning and memory, and with The Buoy by Turnstone ($199, myturnstone.com/buoy/), kids can do their homework and be moving at the same time. A seat and stool, The Buoy swivels, turns, tilts and moves up and down, without ever tipping over. It comes in five base colors, 25 cap colors and patterns, and it can be adjusted for any height.
6. Monster Buddy Body Pillow
The Monster Buddy ($65.99) memory foam body pillow promotes better sleep posture, a healthy sleeping environment, and gives kids with bedtime anxiety a friend to snuggle up with. The pillow is anti-dust mite and antimicrobial, and it locks in body heat, so your kid will stay warm all night. The Monster Buddy’s cover is machine washable and includes a blanket that can be stored in the back pocket. The pillow is available at monsterbuddypillows.com and Amazon.com.
Eat healthy on the go with Squeez'Ems ($7.99 for 2-pack), reusable and refillable food pouches that you can fill with yogurt or fruit purees. They’re easy to fill, clean and store, and are leak-proof, BPA, PVC and phthalate-free. Plus, the window allows you to see what’s inside. Squeez'Ems are available at booginhead.com.
8. CHOPCHOP Kid's Cookbook
Get your kids excited to cook easy, healthy and delicious meals together with CHOPCHOP: The Kids’ Guide to Cooking Real Food with Your Family Cookbook ($19.95). The recipes are kid-friendly, ethnically diverse, inexpensive, and approved by the Academy of American Pediatrics. Available at all major bookstores and Amazon.com.
9. My Farmers’ Market
Kids can pretend they’re shopping for healthy, local food at home with My Farmers’ Market. The farm stand includes six wooden crates and six mini chalkboards to label produce and a shade canopy. The Farmers’ Market Food Set includes 44 pieces of fruits and veggies. The individual market is $49.99, and the food set runs $16.99; both are available at Lakeshore Learning Stores and lakeshorelearning.com.
10. Dancing Fruit Put on a Show
Dancing Fruit Put on a Show is a story and recipe book in one that makes healthy eating and exercise fun. Colorful dancing fruit characters promote a can-do attitude and teach kids where various fruits grow. Also, recipes give kids creative ways to eat fruit. The iPad version includes a “read to me” option, music and photo galleries, and all formats are in Spanish. Available on Amazon.com and the iTunes store.
Julie Revelant is a freelance writer and copywriter specializing in parenting, health, healthcare, nutrition, food and women's issues. She’s also a mom of two. Learn more about Julie at revelantwriting.com.