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32 Best Toys and Gifts for 8-Year-Old Boys

STEM toys and DIY projects rule the day.

ghi best toys 8 year old boys
walmart

When it comes to shopping for gifts for kids, 8-year-old boys are at an in-between stage. They're still into toys, but they're looking for ones that offer something more, be it a mental challenge to complete, an outlet for their energy or a way to express their creativity. By now, you might know what topics engage them more deeply and can try to find a way to nurture those interests, be it through STEM sets or art kits. And yet you still want to get them items that offer lots of opportunities for fun, be it by encouraging pretend play, getting them outside and active, working their critical-thinking skills or teaching them something cool, like a new art skill or how to code.

In order to find the absolute best toys for kids, the toy experts at the Good Housekeeping Institute keep track of trends and test the most promising toys on the market. After evaluating them for safety and easy of use — and to make sure they're not too annoying for parents — the toys are handed over to kid testers, who play with them in order to find out which toys and games 8-year-olds return to again and again. Some of our recommendations below are even past or present Good Housekeeping Best Toy Award winners, along with bestsellers and editor picks. When all factors were considered, these emerged as the best toys and gifts for 8-year-old boys in 2022.

This year, educational toys seem to hit the top of the list, along with board games to play with the family, brain teasers and puzzles and fidget toys to keep things fun.

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Best Overall Toy for 8-Year-Old Boys
Educational Insights
BrainBolt
Educational Insights
Best Book for 8-Year-Old Boys
Millbrook Press
Washed Ashore: Making Art from Ocean Plastic
Millbrook Press
Now 15% off
Fun Family Game
PlayMonster
Meltdown
Amazon
Unusual Gift for 8-Year-Old Boys
OMY
Magical Felt Pens
OMY
Unusual Building Toy
PlayMonster
Snap Ships Gladius AC-75 Drop Ship
PlayMonster
Best Stocking Stuffer for 8-Year-Old Boys
Sky Castle
DoodleJamz JellyPics
Skycastle
Best STEM Gift for 8-Year-Old Boys
Ravensburger
Gravitrax Marble Run Starter Set
Ravensburger
Personalized Gift for 8-Year-Old Boys
Uncommon Goods
Create Your Own Comic Book Kit
Uncommon Goods
Best Educational Gift for 8-Year-Old Boys
Elenco
Elenco Snap Circuits Jr. SC-100 Electronics Exploration Kit
Elenco
Best Art Gift for 8-Year-Old Boys
Crayola
Light-Up Tracing Pad
Crayola
MindWare
Marble Circuit Game
Mindware
Svaha
Webb's First Deep Field Custom T-Shirt
Svaha
Creative STEM Toy for 8-Year-Old Boys
PowerUp
Smartphone Controlled Paper Airplane Kit
POWERUP
BeyBlade
QuadDrive Interstellar Drop Battle Set
BeyBlade
For the 8-Year-Old Boy Who Has Everything
Chronicle Books
Sleuth & Solve: History
Chronicle Books
Educational Toy for 8-Year-Old Boys
Thames & Kosmos
Ooze Labs: Alien Slime Lab
Thames & Kosmos
For the Gamer
Paladone
Super Mario Bros Icons Lights
Paladone
Abacus Brands
Bill Nye's VR Science Kit
Abacus Brands
Hasbro Gaming
Tiny Pong
Hasbro Gaming
Singing Machine
Carpool Karaoke
Amazon
Good Housekeeping Best Toy Award Winner
The Pokémon Company
Pokémon Trading Card Game Battle Academy
The Pokémon Company
For the Budding Scientist
Good Housekeeping Amazing Science
Good Housekeeping
Now 21% off
Good Housekeeping Best Toy Award Winner
Bandai
Digimon X
Bandai
Fast Family Board Game
Funko
Last Defense! Board Game
Funko
LEGO
Harry Potter Hogwarts: Fluffy Encounter
LEGO
Now 20% off
Best Single-Player Board Game
Think Fun
Dog Crimes
ThinkFun
origami
Origami for Beginners
Tuttle Publishing
Advanced STEM Set
LEGO
Boost Creative Toolbox
LEGO
Kido
Bunny Pop It
Kido
PlayMonster
Spirograph Animator
PlayMonster
Upbounders
Popular Sports 100-Piece Puzzle
Upbounders
Fun Coding Toy
Wonder Workshop
Dash Coding Robot
Wonder Workshop
Now 17% off
How we choose the best toys
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Before including our favorite picks in an article, the Good Housekeeping Institute does rigorous toy testing to ensure we're recommending only the best. Many of our choices come from our yearly Toy Awards, where we test each item based on the following criteria:

✔️Safety: Our engineers and analysts make sure that each toy reaches all safety standards. They also assess things like pinch points and make sure toys won’t shatter into small pieces to pose a potential choking hazard.

✔️Ease of Use: We look at each toy to evaluate how simple it is to assemble, how well it’s constructed and how durable it is during play.

✔️Kid Approval: Aside from testing each toy for skill-building attributes, like how well it develops social-emotional skills, all our final decisions come from more than 100 children, ages 1 to 15, who assess the fun factor!

Why trust Good Housekeeping?
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For decades, the Good Housekeeping Institute has provided expert reviews and advice on everything parents and children love, including STEM toys, educational toys, sensory toys and more.

Much of the toy testing for this article was overseen by Rachel Rothman, the Good Housekeeping Institute's chief technologist and director of engineering, with the help of Marisa LaScala, Good Housekeeping's senior parenting and relationships editor. For more than 15 years, Rachel has put her training in mechanical engineering and applied mathematics to work by researching, testing and writing about parenting products. Plus, as a mom to three kids under 5, she has plenty of first-hand experience.

Marisa has covered all aspects of the world of parenting, from the postpartum years through the empty nests, since 2015, and she's pitched in with Good Housekeeping's toy coverage since 2018. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter, who are both avid toy collectors.

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