Toys can help development, and you can find gifts with a variety of uses to keep precocious kids busy. You can buy products that fit this bill at LeapFrog or Edmund Scientific.

1. Rubik's Cube

Rubik's cubes keep both hands and minds occupied. It's a compact puzzle that both kids and adults can enjoy. Change up the classic toy by going with a wood version.

2. Astronomy Themes

Your child can learn about the stars with a laser show or telescope. A constellation finder uses the date and time to help locate stars.

3. Robots

Robots may or may not require assembly. These come with different skill levels like intermediate or advanced. More complex robots can grab items.

4. Science Kits

Toys like fuel cell car kits make science and learning fun. You could also just give a basic instrument like a microscope.

5. Cooking Experiments

Cooking is a valuable life skill. Choose foods that your kids like to eat so that there is excitement about creating them. This can also incorporate scientific principles and may require adult supervision. You could start off with something simple like a ball that rolls around to make ice cream. Then, you could work your way to more advanced projects like making root beer from a kit.

6. Gaming Systems

Gaming systems can also be educational depending on the product. Look for a combination of your kid's favorite characters. The characters can teach valuable information like math skills or reading compression.

7. Reading Technology

Interactive books make reading fun while holding your kid's attention. You can get a system where the book will read aloud or even sing along with your child. This can be a gift that you occasionally add onto. Give a different book for the upcoming holidays. Another take on a learning classic is finding new ways to use fridge magnets. Some toys can incorporate this into a spelling game.

8. Hobby Toys

You can give the gift of a new and interesting hobby. Try a medal detector with a LCD display for a modern take on a treasure hunt that will get your child outside. Binoculars are useful for identifying birds. You could also pick up a rock polisher and then locate your own stones on trips or walks.

9. Environment Gifts

Presents can be eco-friendly to teach the next generation to go green. This could include a solar oven, light, or furnace. Kits include model solar cars and small wind generators. You could even use this as a science project or just a way to cut down on your battery usage.

10. GPS Systems

Navigation is a useful everyday skill. GPS systems can also include a compass. Instead of using a GPS for driving the portable versions are less expensive. You can create a trip calculator or just get the time of a sunrise and sunset. This can also be a useful gift for a trip because the young traveler can track progress.