Picking the best toys for 12-year-olds can be tricky since children from this age group are neither kids nor teens. They are in the most difficult stage having child-like qualities and experiencing new things. One day they might like something; the next day, they might get bored of it already. They learn new skills, find new interests, make new friends, and discover themselves. They try hard to be in vogue by keeping up with the latest trends.
The whims of a 12-year-old don’t make it any easier to buy them a suitable toy. You need to choose a quality toy that will positively respond to the child and their parents. It should be practical, fun, and unique. To end your dilemma, we have listed some unique toys for a 12-year-old for you to choose from.
Our Top Picks
15 Best Toys For 12-Year-Olds
1. Best Ergonomic Design: Selieve Kids’ Walkie Talkies – Blue
This delightful toy is perfect for 12 year olds as it can be used both outdoors and indoors. Its ergonomic design and light and small body makes it easy to carry and a single push of a button enables your child to talk into it. It has a range of about 3 miles in open areas and 0.5 to 1 mile in crowded areas. This walkie talkie features 22 channels and is secured with 99 CTCSS sub-codes so that no unwanted people can communicate with your child. It also features an earpiece connection in case you want to buy an additional earpiece. You can talk without pressing the PTT button when the voice activated transmission is on. It has a key lock function so that children cannot modify the channels.
2. Best For Creativity: Agoigo Kids Waterproof Camera – Pink
This cool toy for 12 year olds is a camera that features a 1080P HD IPS screen and 5.0 mega pixels. There’s a choice of 6 filters and 28 frames that helps kids exercise their creativity and have a lot of fun with different effects. It has great picture clarity with extremely high quality videos and images. Its waterproof case allows pictures to be taken up to 98 feet underwater. The case also provides protection from falls and scratches. Its rechargeable 600mAh lithium battery has a life of 2 to 3 hours, which shuts down automatically when not in use. Its 32GB SD card allows you to store hundreds of pictures and its versatile mounting kit allows the camera to be attached to any flat surface. You can hang the camera around your neck with the durable pink lanyard.
3. Best For Developing Memory Skills: Winning Fingers Flashdash
This toy for 12 year olds is sure to make any child happy with its unique cube design that lights up and 4 quick-fingered games. The volume of the games can be adjusted and can even be muted completely. The games are quite challenging and the 2 ‘Chase Me’ games enhance eye-hand coordination and speed as it requires you to follow the moving light by rotating the cube and pressing buttons, and pressing and avoiding certain lights. The third game requires memory skills and coordination to memorize and match the correct pattern of lights and colors from one side to the other and the fourth game flashes patterns of light for you to memorize and repeat. At the end of the game, press the ‘Light Show’ button to enjoy a display of fun flashing lights.
4. Best For Racing Car Enthusiasts: Free To Fly Remote Control Car – Cyan
This RC car makes a good toy for 12 year olds and is a delight for children who love racing cars and speed. With a body scaled to 1:22 ratio, this car can perform 360° flips and rolls, features a 2.4GHz remote controller designed for 2 joysticks, and 4 LED lights. It’s great for off-roading too with its soft, oversized TRP tyres, 4 wheel drive system, and 2 powerful motors. There are a set of auxiliary wheels at the front and rear of the car which help the car to quickly disengage if required. It also includes 2 rechargeable 500 mAh batteries on which the car can run for 15 minutes each, 2 AA batteries, and a screwdriver to open the battery case.
5. Best For Parties: Superwin LED Light Up Gloves – Rainbow
These LED gloves make a cool toy for 12 year olds with their 3 bright colors and 6 flashing light modes that are ideal for creating a dazzling effect at parties with their vibrant colors. These gloves come with 4 spare replaceable batteries and have a button closure with a well fitting and elasticized cuff. Crafted with stretchable and soft knit material, it’s perfectly safe for children and contains no formaldehyde or any other toxic material. They make a great gift for Halloween, Christmas, and can really add to the fun of the party while dancing to your favorite music.
6. Best For Outdoors: Small Discoverer Outdoor Exploration Set
Let your child discover the explorer in themselves with this toy for 12 year olds that includes a kid’s hiking backpack, binoculars, 3 x 60mm magnifying glass, compass, whistle, and an LED hand crank flashlight. It encourages your child to spend time outdoors studying nature or role-play a detective, and you don’t have to worry as all the products are safety verified. The binoculars offer 4 times magnification with a 30 mm lens diameter, rubber eyepiece for safety, a carrying case, and a string to hang them. The compass teaches kids about directions and how to read the map while the magnifying glass enables them to study flowers, insects, or leaves. This toy will help any 12 year old to discover their adventurous side!
7. Best For Mental Stimulation: IQ Builder Arts And Crafts
A fun and exciting activity, this toy for 12 year olds has a set of coloring puzzles to keep your child engaged for hours. These 3D art coloring puzzles are designed for mental stimulation and cognitive development and also relax the mind when coloring. Coloring and solving puzzles also improve motor skills, enhance creativity, color awareness, color recognition and judgment, improve hand-eye coordination, and heighten focus. It also helps your child learn about structure, boundaries, and spatial awareness and keeps them away from screens. This set includes 9 designs along with 4 packs of 10 coloring markers. You can assemble and color an airplane, helicopter, and train, a butterfly, elephant, and horse, 2 houses and a big Eiffel Tower.
8. Best For STEM Learning: Homofy 6-In-1 Solar Energy Cosmic Exploration Fleet Assembly Toy
One of the best toys for 12 year olds with a scientific bent of mind, your child can create 6 different working models which include an explorer, space station, shuttle, Mars rover, an astronaut, and a dog. This is a fantastic educational STEM toy that helps kids experience and learn about renewable energy and builds a strong foundation in science, technology, robotics, crafts, and engineering. This solar-powered, innovative science kit also enhances creativity and imagination and children can learn while having loads of fun with their friends or family. This toy features a micro rechargeable battery which can be charged by direct sunlight or by alkaline batteries. The pieces are durable, sturdy, and completely safe for your child.
9. Best For Hand-Eye Coordination: BooTaa Pack Of 2 LED Airplane Toys – Blue Green
Let your child’s imagination fly with these 17.5 inches LED airplanes that come in a set of 2 with 2 flight modes— reversal mode and glider mode. Just insert the small wing into the lower hole in the plane’s tail and it will glide, and if you insert it in the upper hole, it will fly in reversal mode. This is a fun way of encouraging children to spend time outdoors and also develop hand-eye coordination, critical thinking, observation, and a sense of direction. These airplane toys are made of high-polymer EPP material and are lightweight, flexible, and impact-resistant. They are extremely safe for children, easy to assemble, and don’t need a battery.
10. Best For Fine Motor Skills: Layken STEM Building Toy
This cool toy for 12 year olds with 132 pieces enhances hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, encourages creativity, and stimulates imagination. It also enhances social-interaction skills like teamwork, collaboration, patience, and communication, and also hones cognitive skills like problem-solving and logical thinking. They have a choice of constructing 5 models that come with instructions or build anything they want. The brightly colored blocks encourage kids to build their own car, airplane, helicopter, motorcycle, and construction truck which come with instructions. It keeps kids engaged and busy for hours and helps them build self-confidence. All the pieces are washable and made with premium non-toxic plastic, also being certified lead, phthalate, cadmium, and BPA-free. This toy offers the perfect balance of learning and fun.
11. Best For Improving Math Skills: Hony Store Double-Sided Dart Board For Kids
This fun toy for 12 year olds comprises a dart board with 12 sticky balls in 4 colors. The diameter of the dart board is 14 inches and the balls stay firmly attached to the board with the high quality hook-and-loops. It includes a free sticky hook to hang the dart board on any smooth surface such as wood, tile, or glass. Children can hone their mathematical skills while playing and can even enhance mental skills. The targets feature numbers so that children can practise hand-eye coordination, focus, and concentration. This toy is durable and lightweight with soft fabric in the center and durable stitching. This interactive game can be played with family and friends and boosts social bonds.
12. Best For Hands-On Skills: Vatos Alphabets Robot Creative Building Bricks
This versatile toy for 12 year olds is constructed to match international standards and is compatible with building bricks from other brands, so your child can make their own models by adding more pieces. This 644-piece STEM building toy can be built into 13 letters from M to Z, 13 military gear, or they can all be combined to form a huge, flexible robot. A total of 27 models can be made to maximize the hands-on skills of your kid, and it also includes a brick separator. This toy is both entertaining and educational and is perfect for children who enjoy hands-on imaginative play. It can also boost their problem solving ability and logical thinking. This toy is made of durable and non-toxic ABS plastic with a smooth finish and is extremely safe for children.
13. Best Long-Lasting: Tigtecgame Blaster Gun Toy – Blue
This toy for 12 year olds features 2 air blasters that feature auto left and right movements with a 2-gear fast and slow speed. The gun is long-lasting, durable, and is made of non-toxic, premium ABS material. The set features 18 orange and blue bullets with a diameter of 1-inch that are made of foam balls. Shooting can be carried by air pressure, making it quite suitable for children to play with. This shooting toy is very interactive and children can bond with parents and friends while playing with it. It also includes a moving shooting target based on a theme of eliminating pirates mounted on a sturdy and durable frame, and it comes with a charging cable for the 1200mAh rechargeable battery.
14. Best For Summers: Pesuma Water Guns For Kids
This cool toy for 12 year olds comprises 2 large size water blaster guns which measure 15 X 5.3 X 2 inches and hold 25 ounces of water to squirt water 50 times. Made of high quality ABS plastic, it’s tested for durability and safety and contains no toxic material. Kids can squirt water up to 33 feet— thanks to the high pressure pump design. This game is absolutely perfect for hot summer days when the gun can be filled with ice as well. It’s ideal for games in the swimming pool, seaside, water park, and backyard, but do ensure that it’s used under adult supervision and avoid squirting directly in the eyes.
15. Best For Improving Social Skills: Lydaz Fort Building Kit
This STEM toy for 12 year olds features 32 sturdy balls which are 2.2 inches in diameter and 67 thick rods that are 15.3 inches long. This 99-piece kit allows children to build forts in all sizes and shapes. It’s great for 2 to 4 children to play together, teaching them interaction, sharing, and other social skills while also boosting creativity, imagination and eye-hand coordination. All pieces are durable and are crafted with high quality, non-toxic, and BPA-free PVC plastic. The construction of the forts is very stable as the balls are solid and the rods are quite thick. This kit comes with storage bags and instructions and children can construct anything from an igloo, teepee, castle to a variety of forts.
Now that you have been through our review of the 15 best toys for 12 year olds, let us give you a few pointers on how to choose the perfect toy so that it’s loads of fun for them.
How To Choose The Right Toys For 12 Year Olds
- Toys that are more grown-up
Children of this age start developing hobbies and interests that are more adult-like. They may start a hobby of collecting things or start mastering a skill. Children may start writing journals or may develop an interest in art and crafts, science kits, or they may start bettering their score in video and computer games. They might want to start on games that take a longer time to complete like complex jigsaw puzzles, scrabble, or complicated construction sets. They are also more into outdoor activities like skates, rollerblades, outdoor sporting equipment, bicycles, and scooters.
- Money or gift cards
This is a very safe gift no matter what their interest is. In case they are saving up to buy something, this is always welcome. A gift card from a store they like to frequent is always a good idea.
- Something for their free time and hobbies
Depending on their personal hobbies and interests, you can go for a digital camera as at this stage they love taking photos and sharing them with their friends or on social media. Video games for a gamer— gift cards for the console they like, gaming headphones, new controllers, or merchandise of their favorite video game character are all good ideas. For a sporty teenager, sports memorabilia, a new ball, or some sports equipment is a good idea. Art books and art supplies make a great gift for an artsy teenager.
- Enhance EQ
This is the age when children start understanding the subtleties of different emotions and also start learning how to manage their emotions like sadness, anger, and empathy. They start looking within and develop new interests and hone new talents. Looking for toys that are designed to build EQ are not only fun but also help in developing emotional maturity and the ability to handle future challenges. Games like collaborative board games, books on emotions and feelings, open-ended play with construction kits, problem solving games, art and craft, and card games are good ways to build EQ. Children of this age often like to use their imagination and solve problems. Puzzles or games that encourage team playing are also good choices.
Even at the best of times, buying a toy for 12 year olds is never an easy proposition. They are at that in-between age of neither being a kid or a teenager, and their interests may vary by the hour. But there are a few things with which you just can’t go wrong and which are sure to bring a smile to their face. Of course, you need to keep the functionality, fun, novelty, and durability of the toy always in mind along with their personal interests. When you start looking, you will be amazed at the options available, and we hope our review of the 15 best toys for 12 year olds will help you find the perfect toy.
Toys play a key role in the development of a child. However, finding the best toys for 12-year-old boys can be a daunting task as they are neither children nor teens. So, before buying a toy for them, try to know their interests and go for something fun, engaging, and skill-centric. You can pick a superhero-themed toy, a car, or a water gun based on their interests. Make sure you buy toys that are more grown-up and support their passions or help them create new hobbies.
Why Trust MomJunction?
Priti Bose is our product writer with experience in toys and gifts. Children aged 12 are on the verge of being teenagers, going through major changes in their mind and body. So shortlisting the best toys for them needs some careful thought and consideration. After a comparison of numerous recommendations and customer reviews, she has created a list of the best options. This article also has a buying guide section to ease your shopping experience.