This big list of practical and fun stocking stuffer ideas for kids collects picks straight from parents! Chime in with your tried-and-true kids stocking stuffers to share your favorite finds.
These small Christmas gift picks are just right for kids from baby to teen, though we have a list just for teen and tween stocking stuffers, too!
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Beth Wood: My kids love putting together this snowman made out of putty, only to watch it slowly melt. The kit is a nice stocking stuffer idea and comes with several snowman accessories. Reconstruct the snowman and watch it melt again and again.
Clip On Book Light
Kristy Pepping: Good reading lights make practical stocking stuffer ideas for kids who are elementary-aged or older. Whether your kids read or study in bed, this will make a nice addition. This one comes in a few colors and is rechargeable.
Age 7+ (1-8 players)
Tim Ponisciak: Bananagrams is a great stocking stuffer for kids that will get them thinking! If your kids like Scrabble, they will also love this word game. Adults and kids will enjoy playing together. Younger ones can buddy up with someone older.
Kristy Pepping: If your child has their own phone, these little grips fit on the back of a cell phone and are fun stocking stuffers for teens and tweens. Ideal for those selfies! It also acts as a stand when watching a video. Plus, kids can wind their headphones around these tabs as well. They come in various colors.
Kelly R.: These miracle-working brushes use flexible bristles to glide (mostly) painlessly through tangled tresses. My son and daughter both use this. They are perfect practical stocking stuffer ideas for kids!
Bath & Body Works Hand Sanitizer & Holder
Beth Wood: My kids love, love, love these adorable mini hand sanitizers and sanitizer holders from Bath & Body Works! They save their money to collect different holders and sanitizer scents to hang from their backpacks. The holiday line features special seasonal scents and holders, and you can mix and match for the best stocking stuffers for kids!
Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty
Beth Wood: I don't know about your children, but mine are OBSESSED with all things putty! Crazy Aaron's is their favorite brand because of the amount of different colors and special features like glow-in-the dark or glitter. All come in a metal tin that seals tight.
Scratch-Off Reward Cards
Lisa R: My family has a tradition of using $1 lottery scratch cards as stocking stuffers for kids and adults. It's fun to sit around as a family, talk about what we would do with a big win, and then celebrate winning back a couple of dollars. If you're not into using official lottery scratch cards, you can make your own with scratch off stickers. Consider writing in special rewards like extra screen time or a trip to the park that kids can trade in whenever they want.
Christmas Fun Mad Libs
Beth Wood: My kids love doing Mad Libs - especially as a road trip activity! If you're planning on traveling after the holidays to visit relatives or go somewhere over Christmas break, these little books make fun stocking stuffer ideas for kids. They will have loads of fun coming up with words to fill in the blanks and then reading the stories back to one another!
Carly Follett: This puzzle has been stumping children (and adults for that matter) for decades! It's a nice stocking stuffer idea for kids that will quickly become a household favorite as everyone will want to try to beat the cube!
Pocket Waldorf Dolls
Jennie Utsinger: I love trying to find stocking stuffer ideas for kids that mine will actually use or play with for a long time. These cheerful little pocket gnomes are handmade in Europe, great for make-believe play and fit easily in a little pocket!
Alexandra F.: These soft collectible foam toys come in all sorts of shapes and sizes that work well as stocking stuffers for kids, and many of them are scented, too. They are fun to, well, squish, and aside from being fun to play with can also serve as stress toys. They are a hit with my middle schooler and her friends, but are great for kids of most ages, as long as they are old enough to keep it out of their mouths!
Kristy Pepping: No matter what climate you live in, a couple new lip balms are excellent kids stocking stuffers that you can give every year.
No Tie Shoelaces
Erynn: I did these for my kids last year, and they absolutely loved them! They're still going strong this year or I'd buy a couple more pairs ;-)
Jennie Utsinger: These electronic "bugs" are fun for the whole family. Switch it on and it propels itself through vibration, easily turning and spinning to navigate its environment. Build little mazes and watch it work itself through or just let it loose on the floor.
Dawn Denning: My kids always think these types of stocking stuffers are hilarious. They love to wear them everywhere to stand out and look cool. They get to make others laugh and enjoy the holidays in style!
Age 7+ (2-10 players)
Tim Ponisciak: Card games are the perfect size to use as kids stocking stuffers, and Uno is a classic! It is simple to learn and helps teach kids matching skills. It is a great travel game as it is just a deck of cards and it only takes fifteen minutes or so to play a round.
Sarah C.: Bath bombs are great for all ages! Target has a lot of holiday themed ones that are super cute!
Age 8+ (1-4 players)
Kelly R.: This family game is especially fun for 2 players. Balance the wire bars on the frame one at a time, being careful not to tip the growing sculpture. The shape of the container makes it a great stocking stuffer for kids!
Kristy Pepping: Although there have been new "putty" brands to come on the market, nothing compares to the original Silly Putty, especially when you need cheap stocking stuffer ideas for kids. Not only are kids able to stretch and pull it, but they can make imprints of newspapers or magazines from around the house. Plus, we have found in our house it doesn't stick to carpeting nearly as much as the newer putty on the market.
TisBest Gift Card
Kristy Pepping: Sometimes kids think holiday time is all about getting presents and a stocking full of fun. While that may be a component, it's nice to teach kids to give back as well. Purchase a charity gift card for their stocking this year. This site offers several charity options.
Kristy Pepping: Squishmallows are super popular these days and although they range in size, the small versions are good stocking stuffer ideas for kids. They come in several different animal or even fruit-themed versions.
christadiserio: I remember getting my first set of dominoes as a stocking stuffer when I was a kid. It was the best surprise! From then on, after dinner, my family would sit around the table and play dominoes. The best thing about dominoes is that they're such a versatile game piece - there are more than 100 different games you can play to involve even younger kids.
Kate Wille Murray: New toothbrushes!! (Full disclosure Easter Bunny brings one too!) But the kids always wonder what color or type of tooth brush they'll get!
i-Clips Magnetic Page Markers
Kelly R.: These little magnetic bookmarks hug the page without leaving dents in the paper or falling out - perfect for chapter books, music books, journals, etc. We have tried a few different brands of these as kids stocking stuffers, and have found these to be the most durable.
Fender Blues Deluxe Harmonica
Lisa R: Harmonicas are the perfect size for stocking stuffers and great for all ages, whether kids just want to make noise or actually want to learn to play.
Kelly R.: We like to do a pair or two of cozy slipper socks for lounging around the house on chilly days. Target always has a festive selection that make great stocking stuffer ideas for kids.
Kelly R.: Schleich animals are some of my favorite ideas for stocking stuffers that will get used for years and years. The reindeer is a perfect nod to Christmas!
Kristy Pepping: This cute bunny is a family wellness favorite and comes with an ice cube that you place in the freezer. Next time your child has a little boo boo and needs ice, pull the re-freezable ice cube from the freezer and place in the little bunny. It's comforting and also nice to hold onto so as not to freeze their little fingers.
Scratch Art Mini Notes
Kelly R.: This box of rainbow mini scratch art cards comes with a wooden stylus, and is fun for little doodles and notes.
Nancy L.: The Chelsea line of dolls are sweet, simple, and much smaller than the standard Barbie. These dolls are 6 inches tall and thicker than a traditional Barbie, making them easier for little ones to play with, and sized just right to use as stocking stuffers for toddlers and younger kids.
Hot Wheels Single Pack
Sue Krawitz Tandoc: My kids love getting new Hot Wheels and a single pack car/truck/vehicle is the perfect stocking stuffer at only $1 each. Check out their limited editions and other fun designs and models!
Kelly R.: This fidget puzzle smoothly transforms into a variety of different shapes, and kids and adults both love tinkering with the one that we have.
A New Book
Kelly R.: I love adding chapter books to my kids' stockings every year that they can read over the school break. Choose a new one that you think your kid will love, or grab the latest release in one of their favorite series (we usually go for the new Wimpy Kid book every Christmas). Little board books make fun stocking stuffers for babies, too!
LOL Surprise Doll
Kristy Pepping: If your elementary-aged child is obsessed with those surprise balls, I highly recommend LOL Dolls. My seven-year-old loves unwrapping these dolls and unlike other surprise balls, she actually plays with the dolls after she opens them. Plus, LOL offers many accessories such as houses and cars for further playing fun.
Invisible Ink Pens
Kelly R.: Kids can write secret messages with these invisible ink pens, which can be viewed only when the light on the pen cap is pointed at the paper. My kids got these as stocking stuffers and had a lot of fun with them!
Kelly R.: Fun Band-Aids are my tried-and-true stocking stuffers for toddlers and preschoolers! My kids loved them, they're inexpensive, and they are totally practical. Even my tween still picks a Star Wars Band-Aid once in a while.
Rainbow Keyboard Cover
Kelly R.: These flexible covers customize the color of a laptop or chromebook keyboard and protect it from dust and spills. Fun and useful school supplies make great stocking stuffers for kids! These are made in all different sizes to fit various computers, so make sure to choose the right one for yours.
World's Smallest Tinker Toys
Katie G.: The World's Smallest toy brand is a collection of tiny retro toys and games that actually work. Think tiny Tinker Toys, mini Uno or pint size Barbie dolls and Care Bears. Kids love collecting these unique toys, showing them off to friends and playing with them, too.
Age 7+ (2-4 players)
Kelly R.: Tenzi is our go-to game when we have a little bit of time to kill, and I appreciate that the whole family agrees on it! I love kids stocking stuffer ideas like this that are long and skinny, because they always fit! Adding the Tenzi card set will give you many more ways to play - we use it every time.
Kelly R.: December is around the time that fresh school supplies start feeling exciting again, and we usually include a new pack of mechanical pencils as a stocking stuffer. It's a fun treat for our kids who always get the wooden ones for back to school.
Melissa & Doug Color by Numbers
Tim Ponisciak: These Melissa & Doug coloring pads are great stocking stuffers for your budding artist! There are a lot of different choices for these travel friendly gifts.
Hot Chocolate Packets
Kelly R.: My kids can't get enough hot chocolate in the winter, and buying a multi-pack of individual mixes to split among the stockings is an easy way to keep stocking stuffers cheap.
Kelly R.: Give a rolled-up magazine as a stocking stuffer, with a note that your child can look forward to a full year of new issues coming in the mail. There are many magazines that are great for kids, but mine love National Geographic Kids the best!
Funko POP Figures
Kelly R.: These little Funko POP collectibles are the perfect stocking stuffer ideas for kids who are into Harry Potter, Hamilton, Marvel, or pretty much anything else.
Chick-fil-A Sauce Bottle
Kelly R.: My daughter got this big squeeze bottle of Chick-fil-A sauce as a stocking stuffer, and it was a huge hit! It's the perfect shape for a stocking, and fills up a nice amount of space.
Foodie Mini Brands
Sarah C.: Girls will love these cute little tiny foods that you unwrap like a LOL.
Primary photo: Chris Benson on Unsplash
Upparent collects community-submitted recommendations and reviews, and any ideas that are shared reflect the opinions of individual contributors.