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7 Great, Cheap Kid-Friendly Gifts That Aren't Video Games

Treat the kiddos in your life (without the use of video games) with these budget-friendly gifts.

Robin Mosley Former CNET writer
Robin Mosley (she/her) formerly wrote commerce deals for CNET about beauty, fashion and other essential gear. Before that, she freelanced for Healthline, Simply Recipes and Nerd Street. She is a Chicago native living on the East Coast who is a fan of all things beauty, food, gaming and tech. When she isn't writing, she's at a restaurant, shopping online or making YouTube gaming videos.
Robin Mosley
3 min read
$30 at Amazon
Lego Marvel Avengers Iron Man vs. Thanos
Recreate the battle between good and evil
$16 at Amazon
Fox and the Forest card game
Two-player card game for older kids
$4 at Amazon
It springs into action
$28 at Amazon
Lego Star Wars Mandalorian Battle Pack
For younger Star Wars fans
$16 at Target
Stack and strategize is the name of the game
$11 at Amazon
Uno travel tin
A quick card game that's travel-friendly
$26 at Amazon
Lego Marvel Black Panther Dragon Flyer
High-flying action and futuristic

When it comes to shopping for the children in your life, picking a gift can be challenging. These days, most kids are happy to get the latest tech gadgets and games, but too much screen time isn’t ideal. If you’ve been looking for ways to get those little eyes off the screens while still scratching the entertainment itch, we’ve got the gifts for you. We found a handful of great, cheap kid-friendly gifts that should serve to keep their attention. All you need is a return to the basics to spark their imaginations. Card games, Lego and more are great for that.

Watch this: The toys you'll want for yourself (we won't judge)

Lego sets are usually a fantastic choice if you know the child will enjoy playing with them. Card games, another option, are better when played with two or more people, as the game really is just a ruse to develop memories with each other. What could be better than making memories?

Our choices are inexpensive and fit the criteria for being interesting, engaging and diverting a child's attention away from a screen (if that's what you're going for). These aren't the only deals available; have a look at our other gift suggestions to discover something that suits you.

Read more: Top toys for children in 2024


With just 103 pieces, this Lego kit shouldn't take long to assemble, and it's designed to be simple enough for smaller kids (ages 4 and up) to construct with some assistance. If they enjoy Marvel movies (and who doesn't?), this is a fun way to recreate the excitement of the later Avengers movies.


This isn't a gift for a small child; it's best for kids aged 10 and up who enjoy fantasy, magic and folklore. It's a trick-taking card game for two players where the person with the highest card wins the round. 


Yes, this classic is still around, bouncing and "walking" the way it always has. Plus, it's dirt cheap.


If a kid you know loves Star Wars, they'll love building and playing with the blasters from this 102-piece set as they create their own stories from the hit Disney Plus show in a galaxy far, far away.


If you don't ease young children into Jenga, it's one of those games that can lead to a brawl (at least in my family). Playing and teaching strategies will help make this classic game fun. Stack as high as you can go, and the last player who removes a block without the tower toppling wins.


There are two ways to play Uno: the regular way, and the way my family grew up playing it, where even the children got intense. If you want to gift something that gets everyone revved up for fun, this one is easy to learn and always fun for groups.


This set, recommended for ages 8 and up, is a nice change of pace from many of the ones we grew up with thanks to its more diverse figurines. Black Panther, Shuri and an evil Chitauri warrior (Thanos's minion) are all available, along with a 202-piece dragon flyer that a kid can build on their own (if they're old enough) or with assistance from an adult.