Gifts for Growing Minds and Bodies

These gifts for growing minds and bodies help you start conversations.

This holiday season is full of gifting opportunities. Here are some ideas to spark your gift-giving. No, I don’t get a commission. Yes, these gifts for growing minds and bodies will also help you start conversations about growing up, puberty, and family values related to relationships and sexuality.

Remember that kids want time with their trusted adults. As you select gifts for children who are on their journey through puberty, think about ways to give gifts that create times together. Times together can help create positive memories, foster connections, initiate meaningful conversations, and provide modeling of prosocial behaviors.

Ideas for Gifts

  • Experiences: Arrange shared experiences instead of material items. Create a coupon book for the child to claim their experiences. Here is some coupon book inspiration. These types of experiences can be enjoyed by all ages:
    • Take a bicycle ride together and stop somewhere for ice cream. Talk about bicycle safety and other types of personal safety.
    • Visit a local library. Ask the librarian to recommend books that the child might like. Check out a book to read together.
    • Go to a ball game of some type. Take a blanket, drink, and snack. Talk about sportsmanship and teamwork.
    • Go visit a friend or relative that you don’t see very often. Interview them about their interests and experiences.
    • Take a hike together. Talk about ways plants and animals reproduce and care for their young.
  • Nature journal: Document your observations while hiking.
  • Card games:
    • Slamwich: Fast-paced, knuckle-slamming fun.
  • Games: OuiSi (It means “Yes, Yes” in French and Spanish) is a set of amazing image cards with lots of ways to play, plus QR code take you to explanations of the images. Talk about the amazing diversity in the world and in humans.
  • Books: Select a book about puberty. Read it separately and together.
  • Models and puzzles: Build a 4D model of male or female reproductive system. Piece together the anatomy with Boobs or a free online puzzle in Spanish. Talk about the medical terms for body parts to teach vocabulary and normalize these conversations.
  • Creativity: Make art about family and talk about what makes your family special. This art kit or craft kit can get the creative juices flowing.

The Goal for Gifts

Whatever holidays you celebrate, whatever gifts you choose, I hope you enjoy building those all-important bonds with children that support them through the puberty years and beyond!

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