Inside: See the best toys for 5 year olds (and beyond) – open-ended toys to grow with kids.
Looking for the best toys for 5 year olds (and even older)? Here’s the list for you.
We cannot afford to undervalue toys – especially as our kids age.
There’s this belief that as kids age, toys should be more technology focused (not true) – it’s kind of like the same rumor that hands-on activities are for little kids and worksheets are for big kids (again, not true).
Our big kids need play – hands-on, imaginary, they’re doing the work play. They need to still be in the driver’s seat of their play learning – please don’t set them in the back with video games just yet. They still need real play.
Big kids need open-ended toys and here’s why.
RELATED: Read more about my thoughts on toys in this article.
What toys do 5 year olds need?
In my humblest opinion, there are two toy categories: “One and Done Toys” and open-ended toys. We want to fill our homes with the good, open ended toys.
“One and Done Toys” usually have batteries, they might light up, or make noise – but the big red flag: these toys do the play work for the kids.
Why focus on open-ended toys?
By giving our kids open-ended toys, we are giving them the chance to learn by doing. And that’s the most powerful learning we can give them.
At this age – our five, six, seven year olds can do some pretty amazing things with open-ended toys and you can see the learning right away. It’s not hidden.
- The blocks they build with are engineering
- The LEGOs are created with great imagination.
- The art they make is full of emotional expression.
How do we help our 5 year olds have the best toys?
We need to remember that even with 5 year olds, we are still gatekeepers to the toys in our homes and we decide which toys get to stay (and which get the boot).
The toys on this best toys for 5 year olds list are awesome examples of helping our children grow through play.
BUT PLEASE REMEMBER: Look back at my OTHER LIST (toys for toddlers and toys for preschoolers). Items on those lists are for 5 year olds too – so if you see an awesome toy on those list, don’t for a minute think the toy is too young.
If your 5 year old doesn’t have (for example) a wooden block set – check out the one on my toddler list!
Trust me, I taught first grade and the toys on my toddler list are toys my six year olds played with each day because these are toys with longevity.
Remember, toys don’t have a gender
This list is GENDER NEUTRAL (as all toys are). Everything on this list is fantastic for both BOYS and GIRLS, and equally loved and used by all – don’t miss a chance for amazing learning just because of your preconceived notions.
Our girls deserve the chance to engineer just as much as our boys need the chance to create.
Here are the best toys for 5 year olds:
The following list contains Amazon affiliate links. Busy Toddler is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Read more about these links in my disclosure policy.
There’s no more beloved toy in my backyard than this stomp rocket – from ages 2 to age 11 – shooting a rocket into air is fun for everyone.
I know you made these as a kid and what fun they were. Guess what? They still are (and the only thing I use my iron for).
- This game is fun.
- The little beaded pieces are imaginary play heaven – this was the most played with game by my kindergarten and first graders
Did you have a spirograph? This is math and art and creating at its finest – I’m so glad they never stopped making these.
Every kindergartner should be playing UNO. I know that’s a bold statement but this game does a lot of good.
Have a kiddo who loves building forts? This is the kit and way better than any other kits like it. Trust me, I’ve tried others and this one is “The Ultimate” for a reason.
Talk about taking kids on an imagination highway, and the best part: these can be used indoors and out.
These become REALLY fun for kids around age 5 years old – they suddenly get the “power” in them.
A good pair of binoculars is everything for jungle hunts and spy missions.
The skills needed to play Bop It! and the thrill of it all makes this such an addicting game – trust me, I’m as hooked as the kids are.
By age 5 years old, all kids should have a box of LEGO bricks for building and creating. Nothing invites invention and engineering quite like a LEGO.
Let your child build circuits and systems with this amazing hands-on learning toy. Easy to follow directions let your child learn so much about electricity.
If your five year old is in school, they’ve played with pattern blocks before. We can bring that fun home and let them create with math.
Sewing is such a lost art but it doesn’t have to be. ALL kids can benefit from learning this very real life skill.
Another “school toy” that we can bring home (and bonus: these come in handy math homework in the future).
Magnetic tiles are amazing for older children to build with – we have this Picasso brand (considerably cheaper and we haven’t noticed a difference).
This is the marble run we have – we love it. Marble runs are complicated to set up, but 5-7 year olds rock it.
Yes, these are real tools specially sized for kids. Yes, that’s a real saw. You can decide if your child is ready for this. There’s no substitute for learning to working with real tools.
This is a funny gift to give a 5 year old, but I give it out a lot. There’s a lot of imagination that takes over with caution tape – you’d be surprised the possibilities kids see with this “non” toy.
Sometimes we forget that puzzles are LIFE for kids and that they need harder puzzles. Nothing is better than this 100 piece rain forest puzzle. The.Best.
This magnetic design board is currently my go-to gift for five year olds – math & art. Gotta love it for the big kids.
The Best Toys for 5 Year Olds –
Helping our kids grow into thinkers and doers starts with having great toys.
These hands-on, kid led toys are exactly what our kindergartners and big kids need.
What toys do you love for 5 year olds?