Nine-year-old girls are beginning to think abstractly and have started to develop particular tastes and interests. Girls this age enjoy socialising and fantasising about the future. They understand complex rules and love to plan and organise. They also start to become culturally aware -- especially in the realms of fashion and pop music. Parents, family and friends should gain a keen understanding of their giftee's preferences -- because she is likely to have strong ones.
Most 9-year-old girls are just as excited by electronic gifts as anyone else. A 2010 Nielson survey found that at the top of school-age children's gift preferences were tablet computers, other computers and mobile devices like smartphones, mp3 players and e-book readers. Electronic gadgets are a great tool for girls to keep in touch with one another, and many come with robust parental controls. For girls who have all the electronics they need, consider gadget accessories like cases, designer covers and portable speakers.
Anything so mundane as a board game might seem drab in a high-tech world, but girls still like them. Every year, students from the Houston Independent School District poll their peers about preferred gifts and publish their results. They regularly rank games like speciality Monopoly games and Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? among their top 10 gift requests. Board games are also an effective way to encourage positive family interaction and socialisation with friends. Large e-commerce websites list their most popular items by category, so finding the hippest board game should be easy.
Arts and Crafts
By age 9, most girls have well-developed fine motor skills. Their little fingers can string beads or trim fabric like few others. Materials for homemade jewellery are popular among these girls, particularly hemp, beads and charms. Many girls also enjoy drawing and painting. Gift-givers seeking something memorable for their girl might consider a leather-bound journal, a set of fine pens or a wooden painting easel and canvas.
Friends and family members of 9-year-old girls might want to check with Mom and Dad first, but most girls love make-up kits and aromatic cosmetics like soaps and lotions. In fact, a 2010 survey of elementary-age children by Good Housekeeping found that a kit allowing children to make cosmetics out of common household items was one of the most popular toys tested. A perfume-making kit also won high marks. Nine-year-olds girls frequently enjoy flashy items like glitter gloss and hair decorations.
Media of all sorts makes an ideal gift if you know what your 9-year-old likes. Many girls consume their media on the Internet, and there are a number of great gifts for them. Try a premium subscription to a favourite movie, music or other online service. Some sites also offer credits that function much like a gift card. Many girls still enjoy reading, so books and magazines should stay on the list of possible goodies. DVDs of popular movies or TV shows are also usually a hit.
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- Houston Independent School District; Longfellow Survey Uncovers Toys Kids Really Want, What's "Not Cool"; December 2007
- The Nielson Company; Kids in the U.S. Eyeing Big-Ticket Tech This Holiday Season; November 2010
- Iowa State University: 9-11 Years Ages & Stages
- The Good Housekeeping Research Institute: Good Housekeeping Best Toy Awards 2010
- The Good Housekeeping Research Institute: Best Toys for Ages 8+