Stocking Fillers for Those Tricky 7-11 year olds
The life of a young pre-teen is complex. Still a child at heart, they love to play games, yet they're all subject to a world fraught with designer style, Beckham boy haircuts and Kardashian eyebrows. It's our duty to navigate them through this path to their teens. So we've chosen some fun stocking fillers or extra Christmas gifts for your 7-11 year olds. We've tried them and tested them here at Junior and we've liked what we've seen.
Washable Pencil Case & Pens
No matter how old the children get, the mere sight of felt-tip pens can put stabbing fear straight into the heart of any parent. You need not fear these pens from Eat Sleep Doodle. While they look like 'proper' gown up felt-tip pens, they are in fact 100% washable. Add in the washable pencil case and they've got a little bit of cool for school, while being thoroughly practical.
Eat Sleep Doodle Pencil Case & 10 washable pens, £12, from Trouva.
The Bracelet Hairband
We absolutely love this idea. A fun bracelet that doubles as a hairband keeper, thus putting an end to those hairbands-round-the-wrist style that pre-teens (hmm, and adults) are renowned for. Available in two colours, rose gold and silver, they hold a hairband away from the wrist, while also looking lovely. They come up quite large, but with a bit of strength you can bend them to fit little wrists. A really great stocking filler.
Hair Band Bracelet - rose gold and silver, £29, Lakemint online.
No Junk Skincare That Works
As they start to develop those delightful hormones, their skin can start to change, yet it's often too sensitive to get straight onto the designer skincare for adults. This range was developed for pre-teens and teens, without harsh chemicals and without any fuss. It's also a great unisex design meaning the whole family can use them without feeling awkward at school or on sleepovers. Each pump us measured for use for smaller faces so there's no waste, either. There are several options to buy, but we've chosen the full set of cleanser, toner and moisturiser, which comes with a facecloth and gorgeous lavender smelling pouch. It's all in the details...
Ultimate Party Bundle, £49.99, Skin Genuis.
Wrist Wrap Headphones
We love clever inventions that are cool for children. If you live in a household of missing headphones and broken wires, try this fun twist on a set of earphones. Designed to prevent the full tangle-in-the-bag nuisance of headphones when travelling, these are are an ideal purchase for you. They come in a plethora of styles and colours, from a leather look (rock style) to a simple bright pink, they're a great idea for stocking fillers for girls or boys.
Wrist Wrap Headphones, from £14.99, by Midbass at Amazon.
It's not Christmas without a board game, but sometimes they just don't want to play board games for hours. Monopoly Deal is a fast and fun alternative to the board game, with all the skill and strategy still in play. It's for up to four players, but you can pair up into teams, making those strategic decisions even more complex. We say it's a fast game, but we became so embroiled in the excitement and plotting that we had to put a timer on the kids! Superb value and fun for all (from about seven years, or younger if in teams).
Monopoly Deal Card Game, £6.99, John Lewis and other stockists.
A Connection with Nature
This is an usual one, but one worth giving to children. The Present Tree is a tree delivered in a tube, which comes ready to plant. The range is extensive, with everything having a meaning. We loved the Christmas themed Partridge in a Pear Tree, which comes with an engraved nameplate and represents health and happiness. It's a perfect way to get them outside to plant it and to take an active part in nature. It's also something that will grow (of course) like them each year and a perfect memory to make with grandparents, too.
The Present Tree, trees start from £30, from the Present Tree Christmas collection online.
When the party season arrives, they're reaching for their sparkles. Molly Brown makes jewellery just for children and we think they're really sweet. Although they say it's for girls, they've clearly not met today's cool boys. There are plenty of choices here for stylish boys too - a star necklace or earring wouldn't be unheard of.
We love the personalised Little Wish Star Necklace, from £30, Molly Brown online.
Virtual Reality Headset
The latest craze to sweep the pre-teen world is the VR headset. They can simply fit their smartphone inside the glasses turning them into a virtual world of whatever they choose. You can choose from several virtual reality apps and you can be racing, climbing, you name it. There are several options out there, but this one works on Android and iOS meaning it's a versatile choice. Double check it works on their phone, but Samsung Galaxy and iPhones are fine.
VRBox 3D VR Virtual Reality Headset 3D Glasses, £21.99, by JINXJ at Amazon.