Christmas gift ideas for children

A selection of the best and most engaging toys on the market.

The Lego 42083 Technic Bugatti Chiron is almost as impressive an engineering feat as the real car, says Sunday Times Driving. It is one of the most complex Lego Technic kits ever produced, and comes with no fewer than 3,599 pieces. The finished car has a working gearbox, all-wheel-drive system and even a rear spoiler you can move up and down with a special key. £249.99 from SmythsToys.com.


Kano has made the jump from teaching children how to code to something a little more fantastical: teaching magic, or the next closest thing, says Chaim Gartenberg on The Verge. With the new Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit, you snap together the pieces of the wand yourself, connect over Bluetooth to a computer, phone or iPad, and dive into a variety of Hogwarts-themed coding challenges. £99.99  from Kano.me.


This programmable robot has a “twist”, as it can be controlled without a child always having to be stuck to a screen, says Natasha Lomas on TechCrunch. The Ozobot Evo’s sensing system can detect and respond to marks made by marker pens and stickers in the accompanying “experience pack”. There is also a digital, block-based coding interface for controlling the toy.


The LittleBits Electronic Music Inventor Kit is “great for children and DIY fans”,
says Lauren Barack on GearBrain. “You’re not building a Stratocaster, but it’s better because you invent your own.” The kit comes with eight parts, including a keyboard, speaker and micro sequencer. One of the easiest devices to make is a guitar – the instructions are “ideal for children – and some of the best in-app instructions on any tech toy we’ve used”. £99.99 from LittleBits via Amazon.


Hatchimals” were the biggest contributor to the 6% increase in global soft-toy sales in 2017, says Kristine Owram on Bloomberg. The toys peck their way out of eggs and learn to walk, talk and play games. From £39.99 at SmythsToys.com.