Getting something special in the mail is fun for people of all ages, especially kids. Today there are so many companies putting together age-specific packages for children, from toys to art to cooking supplies. All of them aim to keep kids engaged and excited for the next month's box. And, during the cold, wet months of winter, can be a useful tool to have when restlessness sets in.
But where to start? The first step is to look at the age of your child to determine what subscription is appropriate. Next, think about what they like or have shown interest in. Finally, how often do you want to receive a box? Some services are monthly, while others let you choose the frequency of the subscription.
With these thoughts in mind, here are our top nine subscriptions for kids.
Build up your collection of wooden Montessori toys from birth all the way up to age 3. While Monti Kids isn't exactly a subscription, each box features toys and games for your baby, and comes every 55 days to three months. Each of the eight boxes cost $297, and the contents can be seen online. Bonus, once your baby outgrows one set of toys, it's easy to resell the items either solo or in a bundle to recoup costs. Or, pick up pieces gently-used to see what the fuss is about.
Instead of the usual monthly or bi-monthly memberships other services offer, YearCheer is by holiday. Each time a holiday comes up, say Easter, a few weeks before the event your kids get a festive box filled with things to do, art, a book and other fun surprises. For example the last Halloween box came with spooky decorations, a haunted house building kit, the book "Room on the Broom" and ghost cookie cutters. These seasonal boxes are a great way to get in the spirit of the eight main holidays, without overthinking it. Prices start at $49.95 for one box, and go up to $389.60 for the whole year of holiday cheer.
Lovevery has developed a following, and given how durable and cute the toys are, we can see why. Each play kit is based on age, and each two- or three-month milestone in between. During the first year the kits cost $80, and then go up to $120 for the following three years. While these subscription boxes cost a bit more than others, the resale value of the Lovevery items is high, making these thoughtful toys a great investment.
Everyone needs a world-traveling snail pen pal in their life, right? Sunny the Snail is an adorable, not slimy, green snail that sends letters to your kids each month. He is always off on an adventure and shares his stories, stickers, pictures and more in a fat envelope that gets delivered through real-life snail mail. The subscription starts at $20 a month, or can be bought in packs of three, six and twelve months. We recommend adding on the Sunny Stuffed Animal and Adventure Box for $24.99. Not only does this get your kid the adorable plush version of Sunny, but it's a great place to keep the letters, a map and anything else Sunny sends.
Break out the band with this loud, but awesome monthly box. Each box has a music-themed book, instruments, crafts and activities. For example, one box featured Dan Brown's picture book, "Wild Symphony," two instruments and wild animal finger puppets. Boxes start at $42 monthly, up to $460 for the year. Shipping is included in the price and if there is another child in the house you can add on an extra set of fun for $12 a month.
When a kid subscription kit is designed by a kid, you know it's going to appeal to the younger set. Such is the case with Parker Krex, who designed this LEGO kit when he was 9. Now 17, Brick Loot continues to be a favorite of LEGO fans and includes exclusive figures, building kits, swag and more. Each month has a theme, and the boxes start at $33.28 a month plus shipping, but if you subscribe for multiple months the price decreases.
KiwiCo may have started the subscription box trend, or at least, made it something for kids. The company launched in 2011, and since then has created dozens of cool art and activity kits for different age groups, all the way up to adults. The subscription is bi-monthly and grows with your child. For infants, the Panda Crate is chock full of colorful toys, games and things to help little brains grow. The Kiwi Crate, for ages 5 to 8, features more STEAM projects. For older kids, the Doodle Crate, ages 9 to 14, is all about art. Pick which subscription speaks to your family. Prices vary on crates, starting at $15.95. Bonus, occasionally Goodbuy Gear gets kits in stock, which is a good way to try out KiwiCo.
Each month a box of five books comes to your door, tailored for your child's age group. Not only are the books selected based on skill level, but when you sign up you can make a profile for your kid so they get books that speak to them. Is your first grader a dinosaur and science lover? Then expect more books in those categories. Basically, for $9.95 a month it's like having a professional book seller pick what to read. Once the books come, you have a week to decide what to keep. The rest can be sent back for free. Start monthly, bi-monthly or every three months, with the ability to skip an order any time.
Little chefs will love getting this small box of easy-to-read recipes, a kitchen tool, shopping list, activity and ideas on how to make mealtimes more fun. The starter kit comes with an apron, and from there each month you get a colorful patch to add to the apron to show what kits you've done. There's a theme for all of them, from Italian food to picnics to a kid cafe. The $24 boxes come with a sturdy silicone tool that works with whatever you're making, for example, a ravioli press or dough cutter. And, if you want more recipes, the website has a cache of great, kid-friendly foods the whole family can make together.
Looking for more ways to keep your kids entertained? Check out GoodBuy Gear’s discounted toy assortment.