Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The Miser's Guide to Cheap Construction Gift Ideas for Kids

I often have problems finding a cheap but ideal gift for kids when money is tight. But if the child in question is a fan of construction kits that are compatible with one another, you could get a cheap gift the child would be pleased with - and you won't look a miser. All you have to do is establish if the child is a lover of Lego, K’nex, Meccano or similar. A fan of any of these would be grateful for a box kit, regardless of how small, because it can be added to their existing collection.

K’nex Pressie Ideas for Kids

K’nex is a construction toy that is rather like a plastic version of Meccano but without the nuts and bolts. This construction toy, conceived by Joel Glickman simply comprises rods, connectors and motors. The idea was originally taken from how straws can be connected to one another to create things. Their strength and flexibility could be mimicked.

Construction Gifts for Boys to Promote Creativity

Like Lego, K’nex come in numerous kits which are compatible one another, meaning that kids can create mind boggling constructions such as roller coasters, suspension bridges, theme parks, dinosaurs, Ferris wheels and motorised models. My kids use K’nex all the time, creating their own constructions, all with the simple components.

Each ‘rod’ of K’nex is colour coded according to length. Each increment is double in length, providing extra strength to the constructions. The connectors provide ‘slots’ where the ‘balls’ in the ends of each rod slot snugly into. These can be made into working parts such as wheels and pulleys. Along with small motors, K’nex can be made into an array of working structures.

Creative Construction Gifts for Girls

Lego is another safe bet, as these bricks have been around since the year dot. Every year, Lego seem to bring out more and more kits around various themes, including Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lego City, spooky castles, dungeons, dinosaurs and much more. The great thing is that each kit is compatible with the other, enabling kids to create their own themes by combining what they have. Again, my kids love Lego. Every year, the challenge of building a taller tower has been set.

Lego have bricks of novel shapes and sizes including some that light up or glow in the dark. Regardless of their oddity, they will fit into any other Lego kit. This makes Lego a great gift, regardless of how small the kit, for a Lego fanatic. Do make sure the child does not already have that particular kit. But with so many available, the giver is more likely to find a kit the child does not have.

Generic Lego for Kids

If unsure of the child’s tastes when it comes to modern culture, generic Lego bricks can be brought in box kits, enabling kids to build tall towers with windows and roofs and figures. So much can be created with Lego, even with the humble brick.

Meccano Kits for Kids

Invented by Frank Hornby, Meccano is a construction kit comprising metal strips, plates, wheels, girders, nuts, bolts and pulleys. This type of kit provides a little more challenge for the older child, and therefore may require adult assistance initially. This could make this the ideal gift for a child (and possibly parent). Kits include motorised construction boxes, racing cars, bridges, robots, ships and towers.

Cheap Gift Idea for Children to Aid Creativity

Finding a cheap gift for kids could be a nightmare if wary of buying one that is cheap in quality and people joking that mothballs are residing in your purse. However, many kids are fanatics of construction kits that are compatible with one another, notably, Lego, Meccano and K’nex to name just three. This means the giver on a small budget can get a construction kit box to add to an existing collection. Kids who love Lego for instance, could be thrilled with a box kit that creates a motorboat or helicopter. Make sure the child does not already have that particular kit before purchase, but with so many kits to choose from, the giver is more likely to find one the child does not have.

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