2016 Holiday Gift Guide: Top Building Gifts

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This is the fifth gift guide in our nine-part 2016 Gift Guide series, and features top gifts for the future architect on your list! 

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3-D Home Kit and 2-D Home Quick Planner: Set of 2 3-d Home Kit and 2-D Home Quick Planner: Set of 2

Use the Home Quick Planner to design floor plans and then experiment with layouts by rearranging symbols that represent the walls, fixtures, furniture and appliances in your dream home. Next, build a model of your project with the 3-D Home Kit, using realistic illustrations of roofing materials, windows, doors and more. Each kit is architect-created. Ages 12+. $59.95

 

 

Arckit GO Colours  Arckit GO Colours

This award-winning construction kit makes it easy to turn your architectural ideas into reality. Requiring no glue (or architectural training), the completely modular, interconnecting components snap together to allow for quick construction and endless modification of your structures. Inspired by the bold colors found in modern buildings, Arckit GO Colours is a fun way design like a professional. Includes over 170 parts. Sure to inspire creativity and a love for architecture, all Arckit sets are compatible and interchangeable. Ages 10+. $59.95

 

Engino Deluxe Engineering Kits: Set of 2 Engino Deluxe Engineering Kits: Set of 2

These deluxe construction sets let kids build replicas of world-famous structures and get to know the mechanics behind awe-inspiring amusement park rides. The Deluxe Architecture Set (1,051 pieces) five types of bridges (beam, arch, truss, cable-stayed and suspension) along with a huge model of the Eiffel Tower (59″ tall) and more. Deluxe Amusement Park Physics Set (1,395 pieces) constructs structures able to be powered in turn by the included geared motor.  Each set includes easy-to-follow building instructions. Ages 8+. $329.95

 

Gigi Bloks Gigi Bloks: 100 Blok Set

Gigi Bloks are lightweight building blocks that can be used to create skyscrapers, forts, animals, castles or whatever creative construction projects kids can imagine! The easy-to-manipulate cardboard blocks interlock with a super-stable nesting mechanism for highly interactive play. Leave the blocks as natural cardboard, or paint and decorate the blocks with a custom design. The unique double-wall design makes Gigi Bloks extra durable. Set includes 80 Double Bloks (about 8″ long) and 20 Cube Bloks (about 4″). Ages 4+. $59.95

 

KEVA Color Pops: Set of 2  KEVA Color Pops: Set of 2

Construct colorful and creative works of art with KEVA Color Pops. Building with these precision-cut, quality-stained planks is an ideal way to experiment with balance and proportion, gain an interest in architecture and learn about color theory. Every KEVA plank is exactly the same size and perfectly balanced. You can build simple or elaborate structures, sculptures and contraptions simply by stacking the planks. Each set includes 100 planks in an ombré palette of purple or teal along with an idea booklet to inspire builders. Ages 5+. $59.95 

 

KEVA Connect Starter Set  KEVA Connect Starter Set

The simple stacking fun of KEVA takes on a new dimension with special connectors that lock the planks in place. Slide precision-milled KEVA planks into the Connect pieces to create geometric compositions or freeform structures. As kids engineer their build-outs, they get a real life lesson on the design principles of scale and proportion and the physics of balanced forces. Starter Set includes 40 solid pine KEVA planks and 24 Connect pieces. Includes a building idea booklet. Ages 4+. $24.95

 

Laser Pegs 12-in-1 Formula Racer  Laser Peg 12-in-1 Formula Racer

This award-winning construction set will dazzle your imagination! Connect a Laser Peg to the power base and a low-voltage electrical current lights up your construction, creating a glow-as-you-go building experience. Design and build your own crazy creation, or duplicate one of 12 illustrated models like the Modified Racer or Convertible. Includes power base, 4 Laser Pegs, 117 tinted construction bricks and 4 tire pegs. Ages 5+. $39.95

 

LEGO Chain Reactions  LEGO Chain Reactions

LEGO Chain Reactions is full of ideas, instructions, and inspiration for 10 LEGO machines that spin, swing, pivot, roll, lift, and drop. Each machine alone is awesome, but put them together and you get incredible chain reactions. A team of experts worked with educators and 11-year-olds to invent the machines, then wrote a book that teaches the skills needed to create their own chain reaction machines. Book includes 33 special LEGO elements that combine with basic bricks from your collection to make your machines go. Ages 8+. $21.95

 

MagSnaps 48 Piece Set  MagSnaps 48 Piece Set

These magically magnetic building pieces make creative construction projects a snap! Vibrant, jewel-toned magnets connect on all sides and come in five geometric shapes including trapezoids, squares and three types of triangles (isosceles, right and equilateral). Young builders can reason with the shapes as they snap together 2D flat art configurations or assemble houses, castles and other 3D creations. Ages 3+. $74.95

 

Mecho Motorized Kits: Set of 3 Mecho Motorized Kits: Set of 3

Get a head start in the mechanical sciences and learn how pivots, linkages and levers make motors work with these three easy-to-build projects. Kits include all the components, circuitry and instructions to make real, working machines. This set of 3 includes a Robo Bug, a Race Car and a Claw Bot kit. Each kit uses two AA batteries (sold separately). Ages 8+ $49.95

 

 

Mega Marble Run and Motorized Marble Elevator: Set of 2  Mega Marble Run and Motorized Marble Elevator: Set of 2

This colossal version of our best-selling classic toy builds towers and tracks that twist, turn and spin your marbles on an entirely new scale. The jump slide launches marbles through the air and into the waiting catcher with unbelievable accuracy. Funnels, wheels and rails create fantastic marble action at every turn. Assembly is easy: simply slide the pieces together. Featuring 215 parts plus 40 marbles. This deluxe set adds a Motorized Marble Elevator to your creation to really keep things rolling! Ages 4+. $79.95

 

Motorblox: Set of 2  Motorblox: Set of 2

Young builders will develop problem-solving and experimentation skills while constructing motorized, customizable toys that bring building bricks to life faster than ever before. Robot Lab builds two-, four- or six-legged robots that demonstrate balance and walking/crawling locomotion. Vehicle Lab builds a dragster, a bulldozer or a dune buggy with a surprisingly powerful dual-speed drive train. The motorized models can easily be taken apart, reconfigured and customized over and over again—the possibilities are endless! Ages 8+. $47.95

 

Q-BA-MAZE 2.0: Rails Builder Set  Q-BA-MAZE 2.0: Rails Builder Set

Cubes that keep you guessing and rails that go the distance really ramp up your marble run fun! The unique design of Q-BA-MAZE cubes allow for a limitless range of configuration options. The 7.5-inch straight-away rails connect easily to any cube or to each other to create tracks that send your marbles zigzagging through the maze of colorful cubes. Includes 40 single-exit cubes, 20 bottom-exit cubes, 20 double-exit cubes, 10 straight-away rails, 4 marble catchers and 10 marbles. Ages 6+. $59.95

 

The Zoob Challenge  The Zoob Challenge

Can you build a contraption out of ZOOB pieces that will launch a ball into the air? This and two dozen other creative problem-solving challenges await! Based on the science of motion, the unique ZOOB modeling system snaps, clicks and pops together to create adjustable robots, vehicles, launchers…the build-out potential is unlimited. Includes 220 ZOOB pieces, string, wheels, a ball, rubber bands, a foam play pad and 35 challenges based on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills. Ages 8+. $49.95

 

VEX Robotic Spider Construction Set  VEX Robotic Spider Construction Set

VEX Robotics by HEXBUG encourages STEM learning through hands-on play as you construct your very own jumbo-sized robot and customize its programming! The spider kit includes over 350 snap-together pieces and a centralized brain to bring it to life. Drive the robot manually with a remote control, or choose autonomous drive mode and watch the spider scurry around all by itself, mimicking real-life movement. It walks forward or in reverse while avoiding obstacles, and changes directions by spinning its head 360°. Ages 8+. $69.95

 

What’s on your child’s wish list this holiday season? Share with us in the comments below, and at @MindWareToys on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

And, visit MindWare.com for gift ideas for everyone on your list! 

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