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I cannot believe we are only a few short months away from Chanukah! The first night of Chanukah is Thursday, December 7th, 2023!

I do not know about you, but I like to start my shopping early to make sure I have everyone’s gifts ahead of time. We have a lot of people to shop for, and I have to be prepared for EIGHT CRAZY NIGHTS of gifts!

Every year I try to gift the kids a mix of things they need with a few things that they want. They ALWAYS want toys. The electronic toys consistently seem to be their favorites.

I am always on the lookout for new, fun, engaging, and educational toys. Just last year, we gifted Nora a VTech® PAW Patrol™ Learning Tablet, and it was a HUGE hit. Nine months later, she still plays with it every single day!

This year, I have a new(ish) nephew to shop for (he will be a year and a half come Chanukah time), and I immediately thought of VTech® for him. I think he would LOVE the VTech® Count & Win Sports Center™! He is just learning to walk so, by Chanukah, he should be ready to dunk!

I thought you might also be looking for some really great Chanukah gift ideas for the babies and toddlers in your life, so I created a gift guide filled with really cool VTech® toys that your kiddos will love!

1. VTech® Pop-a-Balls™ Push & Pop Bulldozer™ (12 months to 36 months) – Your little ones will love chasing, scooping up, and dropping the balls back into the bulldozer while building hand-eye coordination and motor skills.

2. VTech® Stroll & Discover Activity Walker™ (9 months to 36 months) – This toy is perfect for little ones learning to walk! The VTech® Stroll & Discover Activity Walker™ is colorful and has a great activity panel for floor play. The wheels can also be adjusted for more experienced walkers.

3. VTech® Prance & Rock Learning Unicorn™ (12 months to 36 months) – The unicorn transforms from a rocker to a ride-on toy as your child grows! It is so cool! I kind of wish I had bought this for Nora when she was younger.

4. VTech® Count & Win Sports Center™ (12 months to 36 months) – I will definitely be buying this for our nephew. He will love it! He will be able to score a basket or make a goal all on his own!

5. VTech® Drop & Go Dump Truck™ (6 months to 36 months) – This toy is great for helping little ones develop their motor skills and learn their numbers! The dump truck counts each rock as they are dropped into the top.

I hope this blog post inspires your Chanukah shopping!

*Photography by Laurel Creative

Author Bio:

Jessica Weinberg is the creator behind What's For Dinner Esq, a lifestyle blog that covers everything, from travel to fashion and motherhood. She is a wife, mother of two littles, an attorney, and lifestyle blogger. She lives with her family in New Jersey.

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Updated: Nov 3, 2023

Oh, what fun: a holiday gift guide for everyone! My kids are busy making their holiday wish lists and, as a mom, I’m checking them twice for fun toys that will lead to inspiring play and encourage the development of important skills.

Header image of VTech Top 10 Gift Ideas

Gift-giving is truly one of my favorite parts of the holiday season. For the kiddos on my list, I always try to put extra thought into choosing gifts that best fit their developmental stage as well as their personality.

Do you know a fancy, tutu-twirling, toddler? She will be enamored with the VTech® Style & Glam On Unicorn™! Do you know a speed-racing preschooler? VTech® Go! Go! Smart Wheels® is sure to be able to keep up the pace with his revved-up playtime!

We unwrapped some of the top toys from VTech® ahead of this holiday season to give you 10 of our favorites in this holiday gift guide for kids that will surely bring joy to all!

Check them out here:

1. VTech® Pop-a-Balls Push & Pop Bulldozer™: If you’ve got a little one that is always on the move, this push toy needs to be at the top of their list! As they push the handle to roll the bulldozer across the floor, they will be delighted to watch the balls pop out of the smoke stack and into the scoop bucket, over and over again!

VTech® Pop-a-Balls™ Push & Pop Bulldozer™ top 10 gift idea

Toddlers (age 12-36 months old) can also explore the four colorful buttons to learn colors, numbers, phrases, and music. I love the motion sensor feature that encourages motor skills development as well as coordination by triggering fun tunes as it’s rolled across the floor.

VTech® Pop-a-Balls™ Push & Pop Bulldozer™ top 10 gift idea

2. VTech® Drop & Go Dump Truck™: When my kids were toddlers, construction vehicles were always the highlight of any walk around our neighborhood; this dump truck is sure to be the highlight of any 6-month to 3-year-old’s holiday!

VTech® Drop & Go Dump Truck™ top 10 gift idea

This has been a favorite truck in our house for YEARS - it’s been passed down and all of my kids have grown up with it! To start, the youngest little ones can practice sitting as they push rocks to the top and watch as it tumbles into the bucket. Then, as motor skills continue to develop, it encourages toddlers to walk while pushing and pulling the truck along to see the rocks rumble inside. Kids of every age will love the colorful buttons that play melodies, phrases and teach tools and colors.

3. VTech® KidiBeats Drum Set™: Of course, a drum set is at the top of every little rockstar’s holiday wish list! Your 3 to 5-year-old can rock out to nine melodies in different musical styles while also learning letters and numbers. They can alternate modes between free play, follow-along, and more to provide hours upon hours of entertainment!

VTech® KidiBeats Drum Set™ top 10 gift idea

This drum set promotes visual and auditory sensory development as the drumsticks create unique sounds and light patterns when tapped on the three drum pads and attached cymbals.

4. VTech® Turn & Learn Driver™: Vroom, Vroom! Put your little one (6 months- 36 months) in the driver’s seat with this adorable driving toy! Younger kiddos can explore cause-and-effect relationships as they turn the steering wheel to move the puppy character back and forth and hear different sounds by pressing the colorful buttons.

 VTech® Turn & Learn Driver™ top 10 gift idea

My 3-year-old loves pretending to be just like mom and dad and has so much

fun engaging in imaginative play while “driving” her own little car toy. There is a

traffic light, signal lever, and shifter so she can have fun pretending to drive while

learning through fun songs and melodies.

Gift Tip: I love to add a special interest ornament as a gift topper! How many can you spot in this gift guide?

5. VTech® Write & Learn Creative Center™: This toy has been another favorite at our house for years, making it one of my favorite gifts to give others during the holidays. It’s perfect for 3-6-year-olds (however, my youngest and oldest both also love playing with it!). This magnetic drawing board is a classic with a twist: step-by-step animated demonstrations that teach your kiddos how to write letters and draw! It has the unique ability to lead children through proper stroke order for writing letters and learning to draw with 26 different line and shape progressions.

VTech® Write & Learn Creative Center™ top 10 gift idea

Make it extra special by customizing the creative center with the child’s own name before gifting it, which will then teach them how to write!

6. VTech® Drill & Learn Toolbox™ Pro: We love a DIY project around here and this toolbox gives the kids the tools - literally! - to become little DIYers themselves! The project cards let them get to work with their very own tool belt, tools, plastic nails, and screws while learning colors and numbers. When playtime is done, it all gets stored right in the toolbox (total mom win!).

VTech® Drill & Learn Toolbox™ Pro top 10 gift idea

7. VTech® Touch & Teach Sea Turtle™: This friendly-looking sea turtle is an interactive book that promotes early literacy for little learners 12-36 months old. Colorful buttons and cheerful sounds encourage exploration while multiple modes keep little ones engaged for endless fun and learning.

 VTech® Touch & Teach Sea Turtle™ top 10 gift idea

8. VTech® Go! Go! Smart Wheels® 4-in-1 Zig-Zag Raceway™: Rev up imaginative play this holiday season when you wrap up this 4-in-1 raceway for the littlest racers (1.5+ years old). The electronic car triggers sounds, music, and phrases as it’s driven over three SmartPoint sensor areas. The durable track can be changed from Zig-Zag to Battle Raceway, Stunt Raceway, or Super Ramp for nonstop racing fun!

VTech® Go! Go! Smart Wheels® 4-in-1 Zig-Zag Raceway™ top ten gift idea

Gift Tip: I always make sure a few gifts are unwrapped and preassembled; it’s an invitation to jump right into the fun!

9. VTech® Little Apps Light-Up Tablet™: This portable tablet is the perfect gift for educational play! Your 2 to 5-year-olds will love this realistic-looking tablet that features 12 learning activities across multiple apps and play modes for little ones.

VTech® Little Apps Light-Up Tablet™ top 10 gift idea

My toddler is quick to grab her tablet and join me at my computer desk so she can do her own “work”! Kiddos can have the cutest interactive chats with their friendly lion pal, explore the days of the week on the calendar, play musical piano keys, and explore letters, words, and numbers. My older kids love the puzzle games that help them to practice counting and spelling.

10. VTech® Style & Glam On Unicorn™: The holidays are already a magical time and what’s better than gifting even more magic with this glamorous unicorn?! Perfect for 1.5 to 4-year-olds, they can play dress up with their unicorn using the six magical accessories that teach colors, counting, and more as they’re placed on her horn and tail. My daughter was amazed to see that the unicorn can even change the color of her star to match the accessory she adds to her horn!

VTech® Style & Glam On Unicorn™ top 10 gift idea

This holiday season, I hope that this gift guide helps you add toys to your little one’s wish list that will provide endless hours of fun and learning!

However you celebrate, I wish you a warm and magical holiday!

VTech top 10 gift ideas under a holiday tree

Girl with VTech turtle top 10 gift idea


Jessica Grant (Jessica Et Cetera), Top 10 Gift Guide blog author for VTech Toys

Jessica Grant highlights a joyful and creative childhood, motherhood, and home on Instagram @jessicagrant14 and blog, With a background in preschool education and now a mom to 3 young children, Jessica enjoys sharing all kinds of fun including crafts, DIY, and learning through play with the goal of creating a magical and memorable childhood!

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Updated: Jan 17

Have you heard the expression, “Another year older, another year wiser”? I never realized just how true it was until I became a mom! It is incredible to watch my children grow from year to year, always accumulating new skills and knowledge. Their birthdays are the perfect time to highlight and celebrate their growth while looking forward to an upcoming year of even more learning and fun!

I absolutely love gift-giving and always put a lot of thought into birthday presents. There are a few things I take into consideration when choosing kids’ birthday gifts. First, I value toys that will help to teach important skills throughout the upcoming year and beyond. Another consideration is how a gift fits into my budget. Whether it is being purchased for a friend, relative, or my own kids, affordability is always high on my list. Longevity is also important to me and I want to be sure that the gift can be used for a long time. This means that toys offer multiple, engaging ways to play and that these items can also be played with in new ways as kids grow older.

Inexpensive and engaging while teaching kids important skills? Does this unicorn gift actually exist? YES! I can always count on VTech® and LeapFrog® to meet and exceed my expectations with exciting gift choices that also won’t break the bank!

This birthday gift guide features my favorite budget-friendly birthday gifts that provide endless hours of learning and play! Keep reading for some must-haves that I have incorporated into budget-friendly birthday gift guides for first birthdays, toddler years, and preschool years (& beyond!). I’ve got you covered!

First Birthday Gift Guide

First birthdays are cause for a major celebration! Babies are becoming more mobile, vocal, and adorable little people by the day! These gifts can help encourage all these emerging skills.

Little ones will be thrilled to be greeted by name after unwrapping the LeapFrog My Pal Violet Smarty Paws. Along with their name, she can be personalized to know their favorite food, color, and animal (tip: use your computer, tablet, or smartphone to easily personalize Violet while she is still in the box prior to wrapping!). They will love singing and babbling with their cuddly new interactive friend who has 325+ songs, phrases, and sounds to encourage early language development. (Ages 6+ months)

Another great gift choice for a new one-year-old is the VTech Pop-a-Balls Push & Pop Bulldozer. On average, babies typically take their first steps around this age, so a toy that encourages mobility is sure to provide endless hours of fun! They will be excited to discover that pushing the bulldozer forward causes the balls to pop up from the smokestack, into the scoop bucket, and back again. (Ages 12-36 months)

The VTech I See Me Lion Mirror is a thoughtful gift that will make sure the birthday babe knows just how special they are! As they explore their own reflection, they will hear positive and loving phrases along with uplifting songs. Plus, is there anything better than baby giggles? I can already imagine it as the birthday babe plays peek-a-boo with the surprise lion in the mirror! (Ages 12-36 months)

Gift Tip: Add a small toy like this one to a wrapped present as an extra-special gift-topper.

Lastly, the LeapFrog Dino’s Delightful Day Book is another adorable and affordable gift for a little one’s first birthday that can be enjoyed for years to come. This toy promotes early literacy with a read-aloud story that introduces word and letter sounds in alphabetical order. Along with learning their ABCs, children can count to 10 using the number buttons or switch to musical mode to play along with various melodies. (Ages 12+ months)

Toddler Birthday Gift Guide

Toddlers are eager to mimic the world around them. From caring for their own puppy to acting as a doctor, or chatting on the phone, these gifts are perfect for your toddler’s bursting imagination.

If you know a toddler who has to stop and talk to every dog they see, I guarantee they will love the VTech Let’s Go Rescue Pup. Interactive phrases and sensors that react to petting, feeding, and walking are sure to make a child feel like they have their very own new pet! They can learn puppy care tips and play fun games while also exploring colors and numbers. My daughter loves to attach her doggy to its leash. She also pretends to play fetch with its toy bone or simply walks around the house enjoying the pup’s melodies. (Ages 1.5-4 years old)

Another favorite is the VTech Smart Chart Medical Kit, which includes everything needed for engaging pretend play! Using the healthcare tablet, your future doctor can learn about the human body, explore health tips, and even take part in interactive check-ups where they can help different patients feel better by choosing the right tools for their symptoms. The kit also includes pretend doctor instruments and a doctor dress-up smock to extend play to family members or stuffed animals! (Ages 2-5 years old)

The VTech Touch & Chat Light-Up Phone is another must-have for toddlers who love to pretend! Whether they are making pretend phone calls or tapping through the apps to create on-screen light patterns, your toddler will enjoy playing and learning with the phone’s 70+ songs, melodies, sounds, and phrases. My toddler loves to pack this phone in her little purse, just like mommy, and take it along on our day! (Ages 6+ months)

One last gift I have to add to this age grouping is the VTech Sing It Out Karaoke Microphone because if your toddlers are anything like mine, they’re always ready to put on a show! The mic includes 15 sing-along songs (familiar childhood favorites like “Itsy Bitsy Spider”, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”, and “Old MacDonald”) as well as 5 silly voice effects that will help to build language skills and confidence as little ones find their own voices! They can even put on their own performance with color-changing lights that flash to the music and an applause button to cheer themselves on. (Ages 2-5 years old)

Preschooler (& Beyond!) Birthday Gift Guide

As kids approach this stage of early childhood, they begin to develop their own interests, are ready for more challenges, and their cognitive development is at an all-time high! For this stage, I like to choose gifts that highlight these new skills and encourage hands-on learning through play.

The VTech Marble Rush Launchpad Set is a recipient of the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) Accreditation Stamp of Approval by the Toy Association™ and it also got my 6-year-old’s stamp of approval, who is an engineering fanatic. Thecolor-coded building set and easy-to-follow illustrated instructions make building even the coolest and most extreme marble runs frustration-free. Kids can follow one of the leveled guides or build their own designs for endless play! (Ages 4+)

Gift Tip: I like to pre-assemble “big” gifts like this one so that the birthday kiddo can jump right into the fun!

Kids this age are eager to learn, so another great gift is one that will introduce and encourage independent reading and writing skills! The LeapFrog Spinning Lights Letter Ring is a fun learning game that focuses on early reading skills. Sparky the phonics firefly leads kiddos in engaging games of hide and seek as they search for the cute, little light-up bug while listening to letter sounds and building words. (Ages 3+ years old)

The LeapFrog Mr. Pencil’s Scribble & Write is another choice that features six activities and introduces writing, drawing, and spelling. Build fine motor skills by tracing and writing letters, shapes, and numbers on the touch screen using the stylus. My son loves to make the shapes and letters “come alive” by tapping the screen once he’s finished drawing! (Ages 3+ years old)

Finally, the VTech Switch & Go Gorilla Muscle Car is a toy that will ignite your child’s imagination! Its LCD animations and cool sound effects take action-figure play to the next level as it is transformed from a ferocious gorilla to a fast muscle car in a few simple steps. (Ages 4+)

I hope this gift guide helps you find the perfect gift to celebrate the little ones in your life as they grow! Each of these VTech and LeapFrog gifts will provide endless fun while encouraging the development of important skills, all without breaking the bank! The perfect combination for a birthday gift that kids (and adults!) will love!

Jessica Grant highlights a joyful and creative childhood, motherhood, and home through her social media and blog, With a background in preschool education and now a mom to 3 young children, Jessica enjoys sharing all kinds of fun including crafts, DIY, and learning through play with the goal of creating a magical and memorable childhood!

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