Are you looking for last-minute creative gift ideas for the child in your life, but don’t want to get just another toy or a gift that will be tossed aside after a couple of days? A
subscription box might be just the perfect gift for anyone who loves surprises. Most people (and especially children!) love getting mail. Receiving a package on a regular basis is such a fun thing, because it’s a gift that keeps on giving for a year (or however long you decide to run the subscription for).
You can find a subscription box that is fun, educational, and matches the interests of the child.
Because these subscription boxes are put together so well, the kids don’t even know they are learning — they simply engage with the content as they learn new things and absorb new information.
Whether your child is into building things, STEM, or botany, or art, there is a subscription box for any age level and area of interest.
Most subscription services offer different “tiers”, box sizes, or shipping frequencies so that you can match the subscription with your budget.
This gift idea is an especially great fit for grandparents or extended family, because it keeps the family connected and reminds the child of the relative throughout the year, each time they get a box in the mail.
Giving a subscription box connects the child with the giver, as you can talk about things like: “What was in the last box?” “Show me your latest creations from your gift box.” or “What did you learn this month when you opened your gift box?”
You won’t have to research for hours to find great child-safe or age-appropriate products, because the subscription company has done all the research for you, partnering with you to deliver engaging great-quality content to your child.
Many of these boxes are theme-based, meaning that the content and the activities support an overarching theme and even educational goal.
For example, any of the “travel the world” subscription boxes might share a specific country’s culture each time, including geography, food, customs, art, etc.
We’ve reviewed and ranked some of our favorite kids subscription boxes for the holidays, including picks based on their quality, ease of use, entertainment factor, customer reviews, and price.
Disclosure: Some of the links in this article are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost for you, we might get a commission if you click the link and purchase.
- Monthly subscription is starting at $15.95/month (varies based on age and content)
- Individual single-activity crates are available, ranging between $29.95-$129.95
KiwiCo makes sure every age group is covered and provides age-appropriate engaging custom content for the following age groups:
- 0-24 months (Panda Crate)
- 2-4 years (Koala Crate)
- 5-8 years (Kiwi Crate)
- 6-11 years (Atlas Crate)
- 6-14 years (Yummy Crate)
- 9-14 years (Tinker Crate)
- 9-16 years (Doodle Crate)
- 12-100 years (Eureka Crate)
- 14-100 years (Maker Crate)
KiwiCo offers subscription crates for all children, ages 0-18, and even children at heart. Their crates have an adorable animal-themed label based on the age group and interest level.
KiwiCo has done extensive research to make sure that the content of each crate is not only engaging to the specific age group, but also safe and age-appropriate.
Some projects require age-specific skills, however, KiwiCo has done a great job making sure there is an age range to help you choose the right subscription box for your child, not only based on age, but also based on categories, or areas of interest.
KiwiCo also offers crates for classrooms that align with NGSS and Common Core teaching standards so that you can supplement a student’s in-class activities, or give a subscription to your favorite homeschooler.
- Quiz to match crate to child
- Incredible level of customization (based on age, area of interest, budget or shipping frequency)
- STEM-focused activities (hands-on learning through building and critical thinking)
- Engaging “learning through play” activities
- High-quality crate content
- 3-, 6-, or 12-month subscriptions
- NGSS and Common Core-aligned content
- $24.95/month for 12-month subscription, billed every 12 months
- $27.95/month for 6-month subscription, billed every 6 months
- $29.95/month for 3-month subscription, billed monthly
- FREE shipping (for all subscriptions)
Available in 8 different categories that are based on age and interest, you are sure to find a perfect match for your child:
- 3-5 years (Early Explorers and Animals Wild)
- 5-8 years (Science Junior)
- 6-8 years (Space Quest)
- 6-10 years (World Edition)
- 7+ years (Kitchen Adventures)
- 8+ years (Science Expedition)
- 8-12 years (USA Edition)
Little Passports offers “passports” for your child to travel to in any area of their interest: from art to STEM to animals, children will playfully learn through exploration each time they open a subscription box.
For example, with the World Edition box, children can explore the world, learn about geography, be exposed to different cultures, and gain an appreciation for cultural diversity. The Kitchen Adventures box will offer your child step-by-step cooking instructions and provide many (if not all) of the ingredients to help create yummy dishes or desserts. Aside from keeping kids busy, they will also learn valuable life skills, such as cutting vegetables, safe cooking in the kitchen, or even following directions.
The theme-based subscription boxes have a key theme for each month, with supporting books, games, and an arts-and-crafts component to make sure that all learning styles are engaged. This also reinforces the lessons the children learn through play and interaction, keeping them interested and excited about each box content they receive.
- Shopping filter by age group, interest area, and budget range
- Great STEM toy options for all ages
- Age-appropriate picks based on developmental stages of child
- High-quality toys
- Parent-approved, Award-winning selections (Parents’ Picks Award Winner 2021)
- Theme-aligned workbooks, experiments, and games to focus on one key idea with multi-disciplinary learning (art, reading, math, science-all on one)
- Perfect school learning supplement for extra-curriculars
3. MEL Science
Starting at $29.90/month
MEL Science offers subscription kits for all ages, from 4 to 99, and each box subscription has a different main theme:
- 4-7+ years (Coding)
- 5-10+ years (STEM)
- 8-12+ years (Math)
- 8-14+ years (Physics)
- 10-16+ years (Chemistry)
- 14-99+ years (Medicine)
With over 100 different hands-on projects to choose from, your child will never be bored. Every month, they will be excited and positively challenged to explore new science concepts.
The kits are geared toward specific age groups to offer age-appropriate content to ensure that each child is challenged at their proper academic and developmental level.
MEL Science also offers school and group orders, making this a great fit for small homeschool groups, Montessori schools, or micro-schools.
If you are an educator, MEL Science kits take the lesson planning and prep work off your plate. Everything the child needs to successfully complete the different projects is included in the kit (with small exceptions of certain household ingredients).
You can use the physics or the chemistry subscription box to supplement the academic theory lessons.
The content is exciting and fun, making boring science concepts like electricity come alive. For example, in one kit, your child will build a mini rocket ship.
Applying science concepts, thinking critically, solving problems with creativity, and learning from trial and error are all amazing skills that foster innovation and invention.
- Boxed-kit engaging science experiments for every age
- Digital connection (optional) to enhance the hands-on experience
- Video guides to help with the lesson
- Augmented reality connection for an immersive learning experience
- Choose one or more science subjects
- Classroom-quality experiments
You can choose from 3 different-sized boxes:
- Yum Box (5-7 snacks), starting at $15/month (1 year prepaid), or $17/month-to-month
- Yum Yum Box (10-12 snacks), starting at $26/month (1 year prepaid), or $29/month-to-month
- Super Yum Box (15-18 snacks), starting at $41/month (1 year prepaid), or $45/month-to-month
The Universal Yum box is a great gift idea for children of any age, from 3 years old to adult. Although some of the educational trivia is mostly geared toward children ages 8-12, it can be used by younger children with adult help.
Who’d think that snacks can be educational? If you are looking for a fun way to supplement your child’s geography lessons, or simply introduce them to different world cultures and foods, the Universal Yum is a fun and fairly inexpensive way to do just that. More fun than receiving a gift card to a local restaurant, the Universal Yum subscription brings you different countries to your doorstep every month, with a booklet that explains each snack, and has useful and quirky trivia about that specific country, as well. Your child can also rank their top 5 choices of snacks and compare with friends, who get the Universal Yum box, as well. With this box subscription, you can send a monthly sweet gift, and the recipients will experience a world-class culinary journey.
Note: Keep in mind that some snacks might taste unusual, whether it’s spicy, sour, or not a customary flavor (for example, fried egg and sea salt chips). Universal Yum boxes are for children who are somewhat open to trying new flavors.
Also, please check the ingredients for allergy-specific info, should your child have any dietary restrictions, or health issues. Contact Universal Yum, if you are unsure.
- Sweet and savory snacks from different countries every month
- Informational booklet with activities, such as trivia and recipes
- “Pick your Country” feature
- Review past favorites online
- Option to reorder favorites individually (for yourself, or as gifts to share) in the Universal Yum shop
- $25/monthly (just the books, no instruments)
- $120 for 3 months
- $240 for 6 months
- $460 for 12 months (FREE instrument and book included)
The Music Library Box is for any child from age 4 to 12, geared mainly towards the early elementary school years.
With music programs disappearing from many schools, it is more important than ever to foster and cultivate musical talent and music appreciation in children outside the traditional teaching venue on an everyday basis.
Music is also a key elective subject that assists in other areas in life, not only with math, but also with creative thinking, stress management, and artistic expression.
The Music Library Box was founded by a retired music teacher of over 20 years. It introduces different instruments, music genres, and music theory, as well as music appreciation with the help of hands-on instruments, books, and activities.
It also includes interactive digital content that enhances the learning experience.
Your child will learn how to play different instruments with ease through playful interaction. This is a great way for your child to experiment and explore which instrument they enjoy playing, without breaking the bank, or committing to just one instrument too early.
Even if you are not musically inclined, you can give the gift of music to a child, as the included lessons will make it a breeze for them to learn on their own.
- Connection between music and art, language arts, math, or logic
- Great quality box content and instruments
- Online access to exclusive content
- Printable downloads
- Activity booklets
- Access to video music lessons
6. We Craft Box
- $99.99 for 3 months
- $189.99 for 6 months
- $359.99 for 12 months
The We Craft Box activities are geared toward children of ages 3-9, with some activities needing adult help with younger artists, depending on their skill level, and their gross and fine motor skills.
Arts and crafts can be stressful and messy sometimes, but they don’t have to be. With the We Craft Box subscription, your child can get monthly art projects delivered directly to the mailbox.
With everything needed included, you will foster the inner artist in every child, encourage them to express themselves, help them learn about art appreciation, color theory, different art styles, and encourage them to develop their gross and fine motor skills.
Art also fosters creativity and imagination in your child, something that is key to healthy early child development.
With the We Craft Box, you can focus on making fun memories with your child rather than having to plan and prep an art activity. Also, the supplies that come in the subscription box are of really nice quality so that your child sees your commitment to art. The We Craft Box gets the kids away from computer screens and helps them engage with different mediums, using their hands and eyes.
The children can reuse the non-consumables (such as watercolor or clay) over and over, practicing the skills they learned while creating new masterpieces.
The art projects are great for display, but also make for great gifts to showcase the child’s creativity and mastery.
Source: We Craft Box Website
- 4-5 pre-kitted activities per box, with everything needed included (with the exception of scissors)
- High-quality art supplies
- Step-by-step directions and video tutorials for no-stress teaching
- One box can be used for two crafters
- A themed story is included
- $27.95 for 3 months
- $26.95 for 6 months
- $24.95 for 12 months (plus free gift)
- Different bundles, with the Ultimate STEAM 5-pack at $149.00 for ages 3-7 or 5-12
- FREE shipping for all boxes
- 3-5 year olds (Junior Box)
- 5-10+ year olds (Discovery Box)
Green Kids Crafts subscription box comes packed with STEAM activities. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math-including art to balance right-brain thinking with left-brain thinking.
You can order individual activities, or surprise your child with a box of a handful theme-based activities that include anything from a STEM building project to an art project that is all about bees.
- 4-6 science and art projects
- 12-page magazine
- Choose individual science experiment boxes or mystery bundle packs
Final Word on the Best Kids Subscription Boxes This Christmas
Whether you are a parent, a grandparent, a relative, or an educator (or both), you will appreciate the thoughtfulness that goes into each subscription box to help your child or student thrive developmentally, as well as educationally.
The best way to learn is through play, and each featured box subscription service incorporates that concept.
With so many different subscription boxes to choose from, we reviewed the top choices for each major academic and skill-set category, such as STEM, music or arts.
Once you know what interests match your child’s interests and which skills you would like to foster and support with an annual subscription, simply select the appropriate subscription plan based on age and size.
As a wonderful gift alternative to more toys or electronic games, educational subscription boxes offer hands-on projects that are engaging, fun and creative.
Each activity will keep your child busy while they learn invaluable skills, absorbing new knowledge and applying problem-solving and critical thinking, as well as creativity to every project included in the box.
Have any questions about our guide to subscription boxes kids will love this holiday season? Comment below so we can help.