Round-up graphic of best gifts for 8-year-olds.
Credit: Amazon, Illustoria, Gamewright, Tinkering Labs

The Best Toys for 8-Year-Olds

published Sep 30, 2022
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.

This feature is part of Cubby's Gift Edit, our editor-curated collection of gift ideas for every occasion. Need more inspiration? Check out all our guides here.

Eight is great. At this age, kids can do many activities almost independently yet still rely on their parents for some guidance (and reassurance!). It really is the best of both worlds. This is when kids test the waters with a range of activities, in part to help them hone more of their likes and (maybe) dislikes, too. It’s a wonderful age for experimenting, tinkering, learning to play an instrument, or trying their hands at new art mediums. If your 8-year-old is ready to dive deep into their own world of art, cooking, science, sports, or music, here are some of the coolest toys and gifts to get them there!

Looking for great gifts for other ages? Check out our best toys lists for one-year-olds, two-year-oldsthree-year-oldsfour-year-oldsfive-year-olds, and six-year-olds!

Gifts Under $20

1 / 7
Merci Milo

This $5 rainbow slap band is the best of both worlds, a colorful fashion statement and a thrilling fidget toy. If your child is allowed to bring said fidget toy to school, this one by nature is a bit easier to keep track of (and less likely to get left behind on the playground!) since it’s wearable.

2 / 7
Kid Made Modern

For an easy travel craft, try this friendship bracelet from Kid Made Modern which kids can take to school, day camp or on playdates. The travel bag includes all the supplies they’ll need, including a booklet with easy-to-follow instructions with plenty of variations that vary in difficulty. Most of all kids will love to fill their wrists and that of their friends with these colorful memory makers.

3 / 7

It’s time for bed but your child isn’t tired and wants to stay up a little bit longer to read by themselves. (It’s basically the moment you’ve been waiting for!) Reward this milestone! A low-light task lamp or plug-in sconce is ideal for bedtime reading, but if that’s possible a clip-on booklight is a wonderful little incentive to read more, too. This rechargeable version comes in a range of colors that your budding bookworm will love.

4 / 7
Pottery Barn Kids

Did you know that children in fourth grade can access National Parks and lands for free? A great way to prepare and plan for those adventures to come is with this educational National Parks Map puzzle from Mudpuppy. It includes icons such as Yosemite, Great Smokey Mountains, and Big Bend along with extra pieces that highlight the amazing wildlife that kids can expect to encounter along the way.

5 / 7

When kids are ready to take their art to the next level, a pack of sculpting clay is an exciting entry into using their hands to experiment with new creations. This multi-pack will last a long time, and it’s packed with tons of bright colors. Kids may want to make creatures, mini vases, magnets, or pretend food for dollhouses.

6 / 7

For about $16 per issue, this beautiful magazine feels more akin to a keepsake book. Founded by a children’s book author, each issue explores a theme, from Home to Symbols, Motion, Black and White and more. Among the pages are visual stories, D.I.Y art projects and activities that parents and children can explore together but at this age, children can easily take on themselves, too.

7 / 7

This strategy -filled game board features a mythical forest packed with dragons, ogres, goblins, and other creatures. Kids play with 2-4 other players and role dice, read player cards, and venture out on quests to score points. The game time is about 20 minutes, but we have a feeling that kids will be begging to play much, much longer.

Gifts $20 – $40

1 / 8

So, about those music lessons. With a little instruction, chords are relatively easy for kids this age to pick up, especially on the ukulele. These Uncle Goose chord blocks are a simple way for kids to transitioning to learning music. The blocks are easy to follow, plus kids can stack them in endless configurations to string chords and create songs of their very own. They are also available in guitar chords.

2 / 8

Another way to indulge a kid who adores music and performing is with this wireless microphone! It’s fun and fancy, and comes in so many colors there’s quite certainly a hue to appeal to every taste. You can connect it to an app to sing along or kids can simply use it as a mic to sing along to music or just make up their own songs. It comes with a zippered, padded case and a USB for easy recharging.

3 / 8

If you can’t beat ‘em, you may as well let them play sports in the house. This little basketball hoop is the best of both worlds. Easy to assemble and place over a standard bedroom or closet door, kids will stick to their room for hours dunking, shooting 3-pointers and probably some airballs, all while getting out all that energy. Nothing to do on a rainy day? Play basketball inside. Too dark to go outside and play? Play basketball inside.

4 / 8

Part of learning to draw is tracing, and for kids who love to draw this light-up tracing pad makes it fun and easy to redraw their favorites characters. The pad comes with traceable art, but kids can trace letters from magazines, characters from books, or comics books. It’s also super portable, so kids can draw on their desk, bed, on the sofa, floor, or wherever inspiration strikes.

5 / 8

Kids never seem to outgrow collecting, but at eight they can forage, preserve, and turn their assemblages into art. This small press is intuitive to use so projects don't become overwhelming. It's also a great way to make beautiful cards or presents for grandparents, aunts, uncles, and teachers.

6 / 8
was $24.00

The wonders of the moon never cease, and with this cool Schoolhouse poster and calendar kids can learn about the cycles of the moon on a daily basis. Using information from the Nautical Almanac Office at the U.S. Naval Observatory, the chart predicts the comings and goings of the moon, from the new Moon to the waning crescent. Crafted from vegetable-based ink on recycled paper, it would look pretty cool in a kid’s bedroom or any communal family space.

7 / 8

For the budding Buzz Lightyear in your household, consider the Astronaut Starter Kit from Kiwi Co. The kit includes the entire experience, from building a pair of orbiter spaceships that blast off utilizing the power of pumps to painting and building model planets for spinning solar system. Not only is it a great craft, but a piece kids can put on display and use to reference out of this world topics.

8 / 8

Kids will love to go on a treasure hunt from the comfort of their very own home with this cool geode kit. Most kids already have a fascination with rocks (right?) but make it fancy and they’ll really be hooked. With this kit, kids get to crack open a series of rocks (hammer not included!) to reveal the sparkly, colorful crystals inside. They can use the companion book to read all about geodes, which also explains how they are formed.

Gifts $40+

1 / 7

At this age, children are transitioning into easy chapter books but if they’re not quite there, Yoto is a great way to pique their interest. Whether or not you have a bookworm (yet) the cute little electronic player is a great screen-free alternative for book and music lovers. The player uses easy-to-insert cards to play music and stories, and it even functions as an “okay to wake” clock. It’s screen- and- camera-free, so kids can use the device free from parenting intervention. But never fear, parents can always swoop in and intervene via the Toto app.

2 / 7
Mark & Graham
was $99.00

You don’t have to be on the road to play with this travel checker set. While this roll-up set works well for taking taking outdoors in the summer (think the backyard or to a picnic at the local park), it's also excellent for camping trips or road trips when you may be parked in a hotel regularly.

3 / 7

If your kiddo is jam band ready but you don’t have the time to cart them to or from lessons, this guitar is the instrument for your family. This scaled, three-string guitar is easy for kids to hold and, with fewer strings, easier to learn on than traditional guitars. It comes with flashcards, an app, and free video lessons. Next thing you know, you’ll be clearing out the garage for band practice!

4 / 7
The Tot

Fairy-and- whimsy-loving children will adore this storage basket that doubles as a way to cart small treasures around! When not in play mode, it’s undeniably adorable sitting on a shelf or hanging from a peg rack. It’s also available in a natural woven rattan.

5 / 7
L.L. Bean

Archery is a widely-appealing sport. You don’t have to be the fastest runner or the most coordinated to have a chance at winning. When it comes to backyard archery, a real, official target isn’t a requirement either! Kids can use their imagination to create their own bullseyes, like an apple on a table, a leaf on a tree, or a row of empty cans on the fence. (If they’re more interested in how far they can shoot an arrow, you may want to give your neighbors a heads up!)

6 / 7
Uncommon Goods

If your kid has taken an interest in cooking, now's the time to teach them real skills with a real knife. When your little sous chef graduates from pouring flour into a bowl or mixing ingredients, this kid-friendly chef will teach them beginner knife skills. And hey, before you know it, they’ll be chopping the onions and telling you to move out of the way!

7 / 7

This fantastic kit lets kids build and rebuild their very own robotic creations! It comes with 10 challenge cards, wood pieces, electric motors, and all the necessary hardware to tinker and test to their heart's content.