Holiday gift ideas for grandkids: Toy time!

Seeking unique screen-free toys for the girls and boys on your holiday list?

Check out these five fun gift ideas for your grandkids, all reviewed and recommended by my grandkids.

Jooki The Smart Music Player for Kids

The Jooki smart player lets kids choose and listen to music and stories without any help from grownups. Parents load MP3 music and stories on the five durable (and adorable) characters then kids simply choose a character, place it in the outlined circle and, like magic, the music or story plays! Swap characters for another song or story. Also streams Spotify (for Spotify premium subscribers). Increase playing possibilities with the addition of a mini SD card for storage and additional characters, sold separately. My three desert-dwelling grandsons took turns playing DJ!

Jooki Screen-Free Music & Stories smart player (ages 3+) $140.99 on (affiliate link). Learn more: JookiRocks.

Sing & Play Happy Penguin from Wild Republic

This 10’ plush animated penguin sings “If You’re Happy and You Know It” while clapping along and encouraging little ones to join in. Two modes—SING and PLAY—are clearly marked on the penguin’s feet. Declan was delighted to share the happy fun with his new cousin, Benjamin.


Wild Republic Sing & Play Penguin (ages 0 months and up) $29.99 available exclusively on (affilate link).

Green Toys Doctor’s Kit

Everything little ones need to check on and fix up their friends and family, real or imaginary. Made in the USA from 100-percent recycled plastic, this 9-piece set encourages motor skill development, imaginative play, and pro-social behavior. Helps ease anxiety about their own visits to the doctor, too. Declan had patients lined up for checkups—and bandages for their boo-boos—in no time. Gramma got a kick out of the doctor’s notepad of possible diagnoses.

Green Toys Doctor's Kit (Ages 2-6) $19.99 on

i-Top New Generation Top

A high-tech top that keeps track of the number of spins and keeps kids entranced—and determined to stop the top just right to unlock hidden features. LED lights show spins and special animations. Brayden and Camden spent hours with this one, hitting high scores and unlocking secret light shows. The i-Top has more than ten different ways to play and oodles of animations. Available in Mega Gear Blue, Infinite Purple and Vortex Red.

i-Top New Generation Top (ages 7 and up) $16.99 on (affiliate link). Learn more:

smART sketcher Projector

This easy-to-use projector displays images and activities that’ll keep kids—budding artists and others—occupied for hours. Includes step-by-step drawings, learn-to-write letters and numbers, early spelling skills, and more. Coolest part? When connected via Bluetooth to the smART sketcher app on a grown-ups phone, kids can create masterpieces from personal photos and graphics. Comes with art paper and crayons. Expansion packs are available, taking the artwork to a higher level as well as teaching cursive writing and more. James sketched a few pics from the included SD card pre-filled with artsy fun then quickly moved on to creating portraits of baby brother Benjamin then of himself.

smART sketcher Projector (Ages 5 to 105) $79.95 on (affliliate link).

Disclosure: I received these products free for review; opinions are my own. Thank you for purchasing items you love through the Amazon affiliate links; doing so provides me a smidgen of income—at no cost to you—and is much appreciated.