ach5

The 9 Best Electronic Toys for Kids in 2021

ach5

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about ourreview process here.We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

The RundownBest Educational:Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot at Makewonder.com"They can teach the robot to sing, dance, and play — all through voice commands and the aid of corresponding apps."Best Laptop:Lenovo Chromebook Duet at Amazon"The Lenovo Chromebook Duet is a flexible and affordable 2-in-1 laptop that supports a pen for drawing and sketching."Best Camera:VTech Kidizoom DUO Camera at Amazon"Two cameras switching between the front and rear lens make this good for selfies while still offering 4x digital zoom."Best STEM:Snap Circuits Junior at Amazon"The set includes 30 different color-coded parts and easy-to-follow instructions to help kids build over 100 different electrical projects."Best Early Childhood:Leapfrog My Own Leaptop at Walmart"This toy has four different modes that help kids ages 3 to 5 learn to spell, phonics, and word association."Best Drone:Syma X5SW at Amazon"If you've never flown a drone before, it's best to start small, start inexpensive and start with something great, like the Syma X5SW."Best for Art:Crayola Light-Up Tracing Pad at Amazon"The tracing pad comes with 10 tracing patterns, 10 blank sheets of paper, graphite pencil, and 12 colored pencils."Best Sports:WisToyz Hover Soccer Ball Set at Amazon"Lets kids play soccer or air hockey inside when the weather isn't cooperating."Best Smartwatch:VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch DX at Amazon"The watch also has 11 different games to play and challenges to complete using the built-in motion sensor."

Introducing your children to tech and STEM can happen at any age, and these are the best electronic toys for kids that can help you on that journey! These toys are educational, hardy, and encourage the repetition of both motor and mental skils to promote developmental growth. This growth makes these devices perfect for creating a healthy relationship with tech. 

Electronics can enhance a multitude of activities already incorporated into your child's everyday life. Aid your kid's drawing experience with the use of the Crayola Light-Up Tracing Pad, or introduce your little ones to the world of smart devices by giving them their very own Smartwatch! Just like the Smartwatch, there are kid-friendly computers, cameras, drones, and more to make all possibilities for exploring the digital spectrum endless. 

If you are specifically looking for certain items, check out our picks for The 6 Best Laptops for Kids, The 8 Best Wearables for Kids, and The 8 Best Drones for Kids! Otherwise, read on to see the best electronic toys for kids.

Best Educational:Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot

4.9 Buy on Makewonder.comWhat We Like

Charming moves and sounds

No-fuss setup

Compelling learning and play apps

What We Don't Like

Pricey

In today's STEM-friendly world, teaching your kids how to code is as simple as getting them their own programmable robot. Sound complicated? It's really not; the Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot is ideally suited for kids ages 6 and up.

Once kids rip the Dash from the box, they'll discover endless possibilities. They can teach the robot to sing, dance, and play — all through voice commands and the aid of corresponding apps. The Dash provides an open-ended platform to ensure that tech is introduced in a simple and accessible way. The idea is to build confidence through fun and, in this case, the Dash succeeds.

Connecting to iOS and Android devices, there are four different apps that teach different coding skills. The apps assist with teaching kids the fundamentals of robotics and coding. Additionally, it helps to discover the robot's sensors and sounds as well as teaching the robot how to play. Each app is the first step into what can be a lifetime of skills and eventually a career. 

Wonder Workshop Dash Review

Best Laptop:Lenovo Chromebook Duet

3.8 Buy on AmazonBuy on WalmartBuy on B&H Photo VideoWhat We Like

2-in1 functionality

Highly portable

Automatic security updates

What We Don't Like

Small screen

Only one USB-C port

The Chromebook Duet from Lenovo is a 2-in-1 device that does double duty as both a laptop and a tablet. The full keyboard is detachable and the screen is touch-sensitive. A folding kickstand on the back of the device props up the screen when it's in laptop mode. Like other Chromebooks, the Duet runs Google's Chrome OS. This is a somewhat limited operating system, but it's very streamlined to use when you have a Google account and is actually an advantage if you're shopping for a kid.

This device has 4GB of memory, which should be sufficient for both schoolwork and media streaming, and 64GB of onboard storage. That's not a lot, but Chromebooks tend to have limited storage on the assumption that users are relying on the cloud—the Duet actually comes with a one-year free trial of Google One for just this purpose. The downsides to this device are the same downsides for most 2-in-1 devices: the screen is small for a laptop (10.1 inches) and the port options are very limited. The Duet only has a single USB-C port, but this can be remedied with a good USB-C hub.

The 9 Best Chromebooks

Best Camera:VTech Kidizoom DUO Camera

3.5 Buy on AmazonBuy on EBayWhat We Like

Loaded with features

Durable, lightweight design

What We Don't Like

Poor photo resolution

Complicated menu system

For children ages 3 months to 9 years, the VTech Kidizoom DUO Camera will give your kid their first glimpse at photography life and provide hours of entertainment. With two cameras switching between the front and rear lens, the DUO is good for selfies while still offering 4x digital zoom, a built-in flash, five games and parental control settings to limit game playtime.

The 2.4-inch TFT display pairs with a 1.92-megapixel camera for capturing shots, which can be stored within the 256MB of on-board memory. Fortunately, there's room for memory expansion with a microSD card that can be purchased separately. To help preserve battery life (four AA batteries), the kid-friendly camera automatically shuts off after three minutes of no usage.

VTech Kidizoom Duo Camera Review

Best STEM:Snap Circuits Junior

4.6 Buy on AmazonBuy on Best BuyBuy on WalmartWhat We Like

Free replacement parts

Upgrade kits available

Great for teachers

No need for tools or soldering

What We Don't Like

Reports of missing and defective parts

Reports of DOA sets

When shopping for toys for your kids, it's important to choose something that will hold their interest long after the first day. The Snap Circuits Junior kit has you covered. This building kit is great for kids who love to take things apart and see how they work. The set includes 30 different color-coded parts and easy-to-follow instructions to help kids build over 100 different electrical projects, including an adjustable volume siren, clap-activated music circuits, simple light switches, and a photosensor. 

There are three different upgrade kits available to expand this set and keep your child building and learning the basics of electrical engineering. All of the parts in this set snap together without the need for tools or soldering, making it safe for kids as young as 8 to use either by themselves or with minimal supervision. Not only is this set great for playing with at home, but it's also great for grade school teachers to use in the classroom for hands-on science lessons.

The 4 Best Cameras for Kids of 2021

Best Early Childhood:Leapfrog My Own Leaptop

Buy on WalmartWhat We Like

Builds on basic alphabet lessons

Teaches tech and media literacy

Great for pretend play

What We Don't Like

No headphone jack for quiet play during travel

The LCD display is not backlit

The Leapfrog My Own Leaptop is the perfect choice for parents looking for toys that build upon basic alphabet lessons. This toy has four different modes that help kids ages 3 to 5 learn to spell, phonics, and word association. It also is great for teaching the basics of technology and media literacy because kids can be just like Mom or Dad with their very own computer! 

The alphabet learning mode lets your child see and hear the letter while also learning a word that starts with that letter. Kids can also pretend to send emails to Leapfrog characters Scout and Violet in order to learn how to write basic sentences. There are even trivia and letter matching games that reinforce what your child learns. Parents can create a Leapfrog Learning Path for their children for custom email messages from Scout and Violet and to find more fun spelling lessons.

Best Drone:Syma X5SW

Buy on AmazonBuy on WalmartBuy on Adorama.comWhat We Like

Surprisingly stable flight

Very affordable

Easy setup

What We Don't Like

Poor video quality

Lightweight construction

If you've never flown a drone before, it's best to start small, start inexpensive and start with something great, like the Syma X5SW, an updated version of the popular Syma X5C. Praised by general technology and drone-specific sites alike, the Syma is a great way to introduce yourself to the drone world. 

At just .26 pounds, the X5SW is capable of a six to seven-minute flight time, typical of a low price range. However, unlike some of its similarly-priced competition, the X5SW is capable of being flown both indoors and outdoors, thanks to a wind-resistant build. It's also under the FAA weight limit, so no need to register before flying. 

 A six-axis gyro stabilization helps ensure that the X5SW has maximum stability during its flight time. You can easily take HD photos and videos while in flight, but we'd temper any expectations about the quality since it's still an entry-level model.

Try sticking close to home until you move beyond the “new out of the box” phase. Thankfully, Syma packs four spare propellers and four spare blade guards to help repair any damage from those almost guaranteed first-timer crashes. While the battery life might be short and its built-in camera less than stellar, its overall value makes this drone a top recommendation for beginners.

The 8 Best Drones for Kids in 2021

Best for Art:Crayola Light-Up Tracing Pad

Buy on AmazonWhat We Like

LED lights

Fits standard 8.5” x 11” paper

Great for kids of all ages

What We Don't Like

Reports of DOA units

If you have kids that are interested in art and drawing, the Crayola Light-Up Tracing Pad is perfect for them. This lap desk features bright LED lights that allow them to easily trace, draw and color all sorts of scenes and characters. The tracing pad comes with 10 tracing patterns, 10 blank sheets of paper, graphite pencil, and 12 colored pencils to get your kids' creative ideas going. 

The frame fits standard 8.5 x 11-inch paper, so your kids can use printer and notebook paper when they're out of blank sheets. The frame also features a non-slip surface to keep patterns and paper in place for crisp lines. The tracing sheets have over 100 different images to help your kids learn to create comics, cartoons, and build scenes. Crayola offers even more patterns on their website that you can download and print for free.

Best Sports:WisToyz Hover Soccer Ball Set

Buy on AmazonWhat We Like

Excellent warranties

Great for indoor and outdoor play

What We Don't Like

Reports of faulty air skirts on hover disc

Drains batteries quickly

A lot of sports-oriented toys, especially electronic ones, are meant to strictly be used outside. While that's great most of the time, it can be frustrating for kids who want to play on rainy or dangerously hot days. The WisToyz Hover Soccer set lets kids play soccer or air hockey inside when the weather isn't cooperating. The set comes with two goal nets, a hover disk, inflatable soccer ball, and a hand pump. 

The hover disc works well with tile, laminate, hardwood, and even carpeted flooring, making it great for finished basements or playrooms. The hover disc features a soft foam bumper to protect your walls and furniture from dings and scratches from errant kicks. It also has multicolored LED lights for fun in the dark. The inflatable soccer ball that is included is great for taking the set outside when the weather is nice. The entire set is backed by a three-year warranty and a one-year money-back guarantee, so you can be sure almost any problem is covered by the company, hassle free.

Best Smartwatch:VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch DX

Buy on AmazonWhat We Like

Budget friendly

Parental controls

No WiFi or Bluetooth

What We Don't Like

Reports of DOA units

Reports of bad charging cables

Smartwatches are becoming more and more popular with adults, so, naturally, kids and teens are starting to want some of their own. The VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch DX is the perfect starter model for kids interested in smart tech. The Smartwatch DX has most of the same features as a grown-up's version — voice recording, camera, clock, calendar, calculator, alarm, stopwatch, timer, and step tracker. 

The watch also has 11 different games to play and challenges to complete using the built-in motion sensor. The built-in camera allows kids to take photos with friends and customize them with fun filters and frames. The microphone lets them add silly voice effects to recordings. The watch does not have WiFi or Bluetooth capabilities, so parents can rest assured their children cannot download apps or access media without permission. The Smartwatch DX also has parental controls to lock games during school hours or homework time to keep kids focused.

The 7 Best Wearables for Kids in 2021

What to Look for in an Electronic Toy for Kids

Safety - The biggest feature set to look for when buying electronic toys for kids has to do with safety. Headphones should have volume limiters, tablets and computers should have great parental controls, fun toys like hoverboards should have the appropriate UL ratings, and so on.

Built-in vs. replaceable batteries - When selecting an electronic gift for a kid, make sure to pay attention to what type of batteries it uses. If it's an option, look for one that comes with a built-in, rechargeable battery so the child doesn't have to ask an adult for new batteries all the time.

Entertainment - Children don't typically get excited when they hear about educational toys, but there are a ton of great electronic gifts that make learning fun. Look for toys, gadgets, and kits that promote creative thinking and motor skill development and help teach kids about the world in fun ways.