By the time boys reach their preteen years they have begun to develop their own interests whether that interest is in sports, art, or even science or architecture. However, those interests can seem to change on a whim leaving those of us who are shopping for gifts for tween boys unsure of what toys and gifts they would really like.
In order to help you with that tween boy gift shopping we have compiled a list of the best premium toys and gifts for boys age 10 through 12.
In a Rush? See Our Top 3 Picks Just Below
Top Pick: Altair Remote Control Boat
Runner Up: Razor Ripstik Skateboard
2nd Runner Up: Nice Art Set
How We Evaluated the Toys & Gifts for Tween Boys
Each toy or gift we have on this list has been evaluated using the following two criteria:
The first thing we look at is the educational value of each gift to determine if the gift aids the child in developing or improving physically, cognitively, emotionally and socially. This includes the development of new skills and improving their self esteem.
We also look at the entertainment value of the gifts to determine if a gift will provide the tween with enjoyment, fun or a relaxing activity.
The Best Gift Ideas & Toys for Tween Boys List
1. Pirate Ship Puzzles with Lights
If the tween in your life enjoys building models then this Pirate ship model with LED lights will make a great Christmas or birthday gift. This model is made from foam board and paper, but is still quite durable once put together. Great for introducing early engineering skills and problem solving.
Clear and concise instructions
Challenging but fun build
Pieces can bend easily if not careful
2. Quality Sleeping Bag
A sleeping bag makes a great gift for any active preteen boy, who can use the bag for sleepovers, camping, or to simply add to the bed when nights are extra cold.
Double sided zipper
Good quality material
Only good for warm weather camping
3. Punching Bag with Stand
This punching bag with a stand is a great gift for tweens who want to get fit, increase their stamina, and build muscle. Best of all this punching bag doesn’t take up a lot of space so the teen can use it in their garage, out of doors, or in any other room in the house.
Easy to use
Can help relieve stress
Knobs tend to loosen
4. Slingball + Refill Pack
If you are looking for a fun birthday gift for a tween who has a spring or summer birthday then this slingball game may do the trick. A step up from playing catch this game requires the tween to shoot the ball in a “sling shot” manner and another person to catch the ball with a net before returning it.
Gets kids outdoors and active
The straps on the balls break after a while
5. Altair Remote Control Boat
This Altair remote control speedboat is great fun for kids who enjoy playing in pools or calms lakes. This boat has a safe propeller system and can be righted if capsized by running on the water.
If you’re on the hunt for a teen boy gift this also makes a great option!
Low battery warning so you can get the boat back to shore before the boat dies
Easy to navigate
Some problems that the remote quit recognizing the boat when it is in the water
6. Art Set
If the young man in your life is into drawing and painting then this art box with a drawing pad will make a great birthday gift or Christmas present. The set comes with colored pencils, oil paints, water colors brushes, mixing tray, brushes, sanding blocks, an erase and 2 drawing pads.
Variety of supplies so young artists can spread their wings
Some sets come missing the sketch pads
7. Ripstik Ripster
A rift on a traditional skateboard this Ripster Castboard makes a great gift for those young tweens who are a bit of a dare-devil. This caster board allows tweens to carve like they do on a snowboard only they are on dry land. We do recommend that you purchase protective gear to go with this gift.
Great for getting young men to excise
Smaller that the original ripstik making it easier for children to use
There are some problems with the wheels breaking
8. A Cool Hoodie
Hoodie sweatshirts for tween boys always make a good gift as it is part of the preteen and teen wardrobe. This wolf hoodie is soft and eye-catching and is sure to become a favorite in a young man’s wardrobe.
Material feels extra soft
Some of the hoodies are too small for age indicated
9. Catan Board Game
The Catan civilization building game makes a great gift for tweens boys because the game requires a mixture of strategy and luck. It also helps to build communication skills and good sportsmanship as the tween engages in playing with family and friends.
Requires kids to develop various strategies for playing and winning
Easy to learn, fun to play
There are counterfeit version out there
10. Graffiti Sneakers
These graffiti sneakers will make the young man in your life feel cool and well dressed. These shoes come in several different colors and designs so you will be able to give the tween a pair of sneakers in their favorite color.
Good shoes for walking
Only fit narrow feet
What Stuff to Get for a Tween Boy Who Seems to Have Everything?
There are times when a preteen simply has too much stuff to fit anything else in his home or room making giving him a gift almost impossible. If you find yourself in such a situation, here are some alternative gift ideas that the tween will love, but won’t add to his already cluttered room.
1. Give an Experience
Most preteen boys are eager to experience new things so giving them a new experience can make a great gift. The gift can be a cooking class, a wilderness camp, a trip to a museum, aquarium or ziplining or rock climbing. Even taking them to a ball game will make a great gift for a preteen who enjoys sports.
2. Cold Hard Cash
Money makes a great gift for kids of this age since they can use the money to go to a movie, get a pizza, go ice or roller skating or do 101 things that take a bit of cash.
Tips for Finding Great Birthday & Christmas Gifts for Tween Boys
- Take the time to learn what the preteens long term interests are since this will normally give you some great gift ideas.
- Don’t be afraid to give the young man a gift that may expand his interests. I know preteen boys who have received a gift and haven’t been thrilled with it only to try it weeks later and decide it was something they really liked.
- Try and buy gifts with the best reviews possibly as this will give some assurance of quality.
- Don’t feel like you have to stick to traditional toys for boys. Your tween young man may love something like an art set which may be thought of more traditionally as a good gift for a tween girl.
Wrapping up the Best Toys & Gift Ideas for Tween Boys
We hope that our list of the best toys and gifts for tweens will help make your shopping for boys this age simpler and easier and more enjoyable.