Overview

Introduction

Your 9-year-old boy will be experiencing changes that may be confusing – physically and emotionally. Your child may be confused because he wants more independence from family, but still wants to be a part of his family. At times, he may have to make tough decisions about activities – does he want to spend the day playing baseball with his friends at the park or spend the day in the pool with his family. While that seems like an easy decision to make, for children who are stuck between wanting independence and wanting security, the decision may be a little tougher to make. As children begin to develop more relationships and friendships independent of the family unit, peer pressure can become more of an issue.  (Source)

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Play Time

While your 9-year-old may seem to be growing up quickly and his interests are changing to more mature subjects (world events, how others feel, etc.), remember that he is at that special age most call the tween phase. He is caught between wanting to be a kid and wanting to be a teen. Allow him to be independent when he needs to be and to act like a kid when he needs that.

Play time is still a momentous time for your 9-year-old. Play time allows your child to learn to work with others, learn to make mistakes and fix them, and learn to solve problems. Almost all play time is learning time – whether the game/toy is educational, physical, or just silly. Kids learn many life skills through play.

Quick Summary Comparisons Chart

1. Made by Me Build & Paint Your Own Wooden Cars

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Physical Activity

No

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Educational

Yes

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Multi/Single Player

Single Or Multi

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Buy Wooden Cars

2. Scientific Explorer Disgusting Science Kit

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Physical Activity

No

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Educational

Yes

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Multi/Single Player

Single Or Multi

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Buy Scientific Explorer

3. Nerf Official N-Strike Elite Strongarm Blaster

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Physical Activity

Yes

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Educational

No

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Multi/Single Player

Single Or Multi

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Buy N-Strike Elite

4. Ozobot Bit Extra Bot

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Physical Activity

No

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Educational

Yes

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Multi/Single Player

Single Or Multi

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Buy Ozobot

5.Razor E100 Electric Scooter

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Physical Activity

Yes

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Educational

No

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Multi/Single Player

Single 

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Buy Razor

6.Think Fun Gravity Maze Marble Run

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Physical Activity

No

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Educational

Yes

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Multi/Single Player

Single Or Multi

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Buy Gravity Maze

7.Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set

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Physical Activity

No

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Educational

Yes

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Multi/Single Player

Single 

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Buy Magic Set

Top Picks and Why – Full Review

1. Best Birthday Gift for 9-year-old Boys

Cars are a safe bet for boys. One of the best ways to get their creative juices flowing is with model cars. While a 9-year-old may not be ready for complex model cars, the Made by Me Build & Paint Your Own Wooden Cars is a great beginner kit.

As one of the best birthday gifts for 9-year-old boys, this set allows your child to create the car of his dreams. The Made by Me collection from Horizon Group USA is designed to encourage artistic exploration, creativity, and independent play.

Horizon Group USA began in 1912 as a small NYC company that supplied ribbon and trim to lights manufacturers. As one of the leading suppliers of Craft Activity Kits, Horizon Group USA has been providing high-quality and inspiring craft kits for over 100 years.

What We Liked
  • Includes materials for 3 cars – 42 pre-cut and pre-sanded wooden pieces
  • Easy to follow instructions allow your child to work on his own
  • Also includes everything needed to build and design the cars – 12 pots of acrylic paint, 3 pots of glue, 2 paint brushes, sand paper, and sticker sheets.
  • Promotes self-expression, creative thinking, and story-telling
  • Improves problem-solving skills, concentration, and fine motor skills.
What We Didn't Like
  • Wheels can come off easily when playing with the cars.

2. Best Science-Themed Gift for a 9-year-old Boy

Science can be fun and disgusting. The more disgusting it is, often the more a 9-year-old boy likes it. The best science-themed gift for a 9-year-old boy is the Scientific Explorer Disgusting Science Kit. Designed for kids 8 and older, this kit allows your child to learn about body parts, gross byproducts, and have loads of laughter.

Scientific Explorer is a division of Alex Brands, one of most well-known providers of quality art supplies and craft kits for kids since 1986.

The Scientific Explorer is one of the industry leaders in activity-based educational science kits and the Disgusting Science Kit is one of the best boy gifts for 9-year-olds.

What We Liked
  • This kit allows kids to mix a batch of coagulating blood, create a stinky intestine, and grow friendly germs and fuzzy molds.
  • The kit comes with everything needed to perform the experiments – including 4 petri dishes, a magnifier, cotton swabs, gelatin, sugar, food coloring, activity guide, and more.
  • This science kit helps children develop critical thinking skills, encourages exploration, and inspires imaginations.
  • The hands-on activities and experiments make learning fun.
  • Children learn to the answers to many questions involving body parts and gross bodily functions – including why you pass gas and why feet are stinky.
What We Didn't Like
  • Since you must use the stove or microwave for most experiments, it is not ideal for a child without adult supervision.

3. Best Sport Gifts for 9-year-old Boys

The best sport gifts for 9-year-old boys involve lots of fun and activity. With the Nerf Official N-Strike Elite Strongarm Blaster, your son will have so much fun, he will not realize he is exercising.

The package includes the Strongarm blaster, 6 Elite darts, and easy-to-follow instructions, so your child is up and running (literally) within minutes. A division of Hasbro, Nerf features a line of soft, foam balls and other weaponry that allow kids of all ages to stage battles without anyone being hurt.

The foam darts are safe for indoor play as well as outdoor play. Hasbro has been one of the leading providers of children’s toys since 1923 – and introduced beloved toys and games such as Mr. Potato Head, Monopoly, and G.I. Joe.

What We Liked
  • The blaster shoots darts up to 90 feet.
  • Equipped with a Slam Fire slide that allows you to fire all 6 darts in rapid succession.
  • The barrel rotates for rapid firing and flips open so the darts can be easily loaded.
  • Compatible with most N-Strike accessories
  • Easy for children to use.
What We Didn't Like
  • The gun can jam, which slows the action.

4. Best Robot Gift for 9-year-old Boys

One of the best boy gifts for a 9-year-old is the Ozobot Bit Extra Bot. Computers and gaming systems have become a large part of our kids’ lives. The Ozobot teaches your child to create code (computer talk) with the stroke of a marker.

The Ozobot Bit Extra combines three of your child’s favorite things – electronics, robots, and markers. As a part of the STEM curriculum (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), the Ozobot Bit is used in schools across America.

The Ozobot Bit Extra is a product of Evollve Inc. Since 2012, Evollve Inc. has worked to bring new ways that combine social interaction and digital apps. They are dedicated to providing quality robots that allow kids to learn while having fun.

What We Liked
  • Teaches coding using colors.
  • Children can create paths for Bit to follow – distinct colors control speed, direction, and special moves.
  • The Ozobot and OzoBlockly editor allow your child to learn block-based coding.
  • Challenging and fun – your kids are learning but think they are playing.
  • Boosts creativity and brain development.
What We Didn't Like
  • If you wish to use the OzoBlockly program, it will cost extra.

5. Best Christmas Gift for 9-year-old Boys

It can be difficult finding the best holiday gift for 9-year-old boys. Trapped between kid and teen, interests can change rapidly, and yesterday’s favorite toy may hold no interest today.

However, one thing you can count on pleasing boys of any age is riding toys. One of the best Christmas gifts for 9-year-old boys is the Razor E100 Electric Scooter. Razor has been providing quality, innovative scooters since 2000.

The Razor company provides riding toys (scooters, hoverboards, electric skateboards, and heel wheels) for all ages and skill sets. One of their main goals is to get kids away from the screen for a while, out into the sunshine and fresh air, and, most of all, having fun!

What We Liked
  • Equipped with a twist-grip accelerator and hand brake for easier control.
  • Reaches speeds of up to 10 MPH.
  • Holds up to 120 pounds.
  • Quiet, electric motor provides up to 40 minutes of continuous riding at full charge.
  • Includes rechargeable battery and battery charger.
What We Didn't Like
  • Can be difficult to set kick stand in place.

6. Best Educational Gift for 9-year-old Boys

One of the most popular curricula in schools today is STEM curricula. STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) (Source) and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) are used in public and private schools around the world to better prepare students for the technology of the future.

The STEM curriculum often uses educational games and toys to enhance the students learning process. With that in mind, one of the best educational gifts for 9-year-old boys is the Gravity Maze by ThinkFun. This gravity-powered logic game promotes visual perception and reasoning skills.

A combination maze game and marble game, your 9-year-old boy will have hours of fun creating paths for the marbles to travel. The winner of multiple awards, this logic game is designed to promote a fun learning environment.

What We Liked
  • Includes game grid, 10 gravity maze towers, and 3 stainless steel marbles.
  • Presents 60 different challenges ranging from beginner to expert.
  • Winner of Toy of the Year Award in 2017 in the specialty category.
  • Easy to follow instructions
  • Promotes spatial reasoning, planning skills, and logical reasoning
What We Didn't Like
  • Does not have individual cubes – rather, the towers are already built.

7. Best Non-Electronic Gifts for 9-year-old Boys

The Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set may be one of the best non-electronic gifts for a 9-year-old boy. Designed specifically for the beginning illusionist, it includes 10 easy-to-learn magic tricks – Magic Coin Box, Vanishing Coin, Secret Silks, Great Escape, Disappearing Ball, Magic Number Prediction, Egyptian Prediction, Money Maker, Vanishing Zone, and Cylinder Squeeze.

Easy to follow instructions will allow your child to perform professional magic tricks in moments.

Based in Connecticut, Melissa & Doug is a family-owned business, the first product was developed in a garage. It began with a desire to create fun and meaningful products for kids. Their mission is to kickoff the imagination and create a sense of wonder that allows a child to discover themselves, their purpose, and their passion.

What We Liked
  • Made of solid wood for durability.
  • Promotes hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills
  • Builds confidence in children as they master professional magic tricks
  • Hinged box for storing supplies.
  • Includes everything your child needs to perform 10 magic tricks plus easy-to-follow instructions
What We Didn't Like
  • Contains small parts that may be easy to lose

Emotional and/or Social Changes in your 9 year old

  • Children will begin to develop more complex relationships outside of the family unit.
  • 9-year-olds have an emotional need to develop these friendships.
  • Peer pressure can play a role in decision-making – positive peer pressure can help your child make good decisions while negative peer pressure can cause bad decisions.
  • Because of changes in the body, your child may focus more on body image.

You May Also Enjoy: Best Toys for Toddlers in 2019: (Top 7 Picks) & Gifts Buying Guide

Cognitive Changes

  • Middle school/junior high will present more academic challenges.
  • 9-year-olds feel a need to become more independent.
  • At this age, children will begin to consider and try to understand opinions other than their own.
  •  You child’s attention span will increase, allowing him to do more complex things – school work, games, puzzles, etc.

 You May Also Enjoy: Gifts for 12 Year Old Boys – Best Toys Ideas List (2019) 

Positive Parenting Tips for 9-year-old Boys

As your influence on your child begins to decrease, it is extremely important to develop and maintain a strong, positive relationship with your son. Here are some tips for positive parenting:

  • Stay connected with your child – spend quality time together, ask questions, be willing to discuss world events and other things your child is interested in.
  • Require family time – schedule routine events (family game night, family meals, family meetings, family trips) and require all children to attend.
  • Independence – it is important to understand that, while your 9-year-old strives for independence, he still needs to be treated like a kid.
  • This age is a perfect time to teach your child positive problem-solving and negotiating techniques. Don’t give in to whining after you tell them no – allow them to present their reasons for wanting to do something and work out something that satisfies you both.
  • With all the physical changes your child will be going through, it is important to teach healthy eating habits – teach them to eat a balanced diet and to choose healthy snacks versus candy and other empty calorie snacks.
  • Set limits on electronics – tablets, gaming system, television. Make screen time a privilege rather than something a child can do all the time.
  • Be aware of your child’s friendships – get to know his friends, meet their parents, and be sure their friends are being a positive influence rather than placing negative peer pressure on your child. Be sure your child understands the difference between good and bad decisions.
  • Teach your child the values (lead by example) that you want him to leave by – sharing, caring, treating others well, lending a helping hand with no expectation of a reward, etc.
  • Most of all, participate in your child’s life in a way that does not feel overbearing to him. Know when to allow him some independence to make his own choices, while letting him know that you will step in if the decision is too big for him to make.

Final Thoughts

While purchasing gifts for kids may be a challenging feat because their interests change so quickly, there are some tried and true products that have lasted throughout the ages. Examples include magic kits, marble games, and scooters. Another concept that holds true throughout the ages is Safety First.

1. Here are a few safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Always follow manufacturer’s guidelines for age, weight, and height.
  • Choose well-made and durable toys (toys made from thin plastic materials can break easily, exposing sharp edges).
  • Along with age, weight, and height recommendations, you should choose toys that your child can handle physically, especially riding toys.
  • Riding toys (bikes, scooters, skateboards, etc.) – purchase proper safety gear and require your child to wear it while on the toy. Safety gear can include helmets, knee pads, elbow pads, and appropriate shoes.
  • Always read the label/box to be sure the toy/game does not contain toxic chemicals such as lead, mercury, arsenic, or Phthalates.
  • Supervise your child until he fully understands how to operate/play with a new toy.
  • Teach your child about road safety and neighborhood safety if he will be riding around the neighborhood on a bicycle, scooter, or skateboard.
  • Stress the importance of following the rules and playing with safety in mind.

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