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The Best Gifts for 11-Year-Olds

Make your new tween happy with a birthday gift that's fun, interesting, and, dare we say, cool.

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The Best Gifts for 11-Year-Olds, set against a green background. These are our picks for 2021.

Like the bassist in Spinal Tap, your kid has turned it up to 11. Finding age-appropriate gifts for 11-year-old boys and girl can be one long, compounded exercise in frustration — while toddlers are engaged by problem-solving of almost any kind, older kids have their own well-developed interests to consider. The best toys for 11-year-olds, who are caught in that sometimes-tricky spot between little kid and adolescent, should acknowledge that they’re morphing into independent people with their own pursuits and developing social lives.

That makes finding the right gift a challenge — in part because the best birthday gift ideas will be dependent on the specific interests of the 11-year-old in question. Some cling to childhood and some blossom quite suddenly into full tweendom. Most, however, swing wildly back and forth between mature and immature behaviors — and remain more than happy to play with a good toy.

Related: Gift Ideas for 10-Year-Olds

Our favorite toys for 11-year-olds encourage the development of their critical thinking and social skills. Yes, devices are fine. It’s the way of the world. But sometimes (okay, as often as possible), it’s a good idea to leave the devices behind and get kids out in the world and doing something that involves real-world interactions with actual people. Here are the coolest, most developmentally appropriate toys and gifts that the 11-year-old in your life will love.

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