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When it comes to choosing the best gifts for 4-year-olds, it's all about the toys. Don't be that grown-up who gifts clothes! (Unless, of course, it's an Elsa costume.) Preschoolers are all about piling sand into a bucket and calling it a cake, building things just to smash them into a million pieces, and smearing glitter glue on everything. They crave outlets for creativity and ways to burn off all that extra energy. Given all that's going on in their little bodies and big brains, what toys would make the best presents?
"When selecting a gift for any kid, you should always be sure that the product is age-graded appropriately and takes into account what you know about the recipient: their interests, what they may already have, and their personality," says James Zahn, senior editor at The Toy Insider, and father of two daughters. "You should also consider what you know about the parent or guardian and ask yourself, 'Is this something that they will approve of?'" (Maybe skip the slime-making kit.) Resist the temptation to buy something meant for a slightly older age group; it's best to avoid the frustration from the child if they're not ready for a specific toy.
Below, we've compiled our picks for the best toys for 4-year-olds, based on Zahn's recommendations, editor testing, and online reviews. Read on for more gift guides by age!
Ysolt Usigan is a lifestyle writer and editor with 15+ years of experience working in digital media. She has created share-worthy content for publishers Shape, What To Expect, Cafe Mom, TODAY, CBS News, HuffPo, The Bump, Health, Ask Men, and Best Gifts. A working mom of two, her editorial expertise in parenting, shopping, and home are rooted in her everyday life.
After over a decade as a digital editor, Maggie Panos is navigating freelance writing and full-time parenting. She covered entertainment for POPSUGAR from New York and San Francisco before setting down roots in tree-covered Portland and focusing on local journalism. A self-proclaimed "okay baker", Maggie is interested in all things lifestyle — especially if those things involve Bravolebrities.
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