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Finding the perfect gift for a fourteen-year-old boy isn’t the easiest gift to find. At best, 14-year-old boys are very much in a transitional phase, where hobbies and activities are changing as they enter adolescence. Just a year away from high school for most, gifts that worked for 11-year-old boys won’t cut it.
Even more so at this age, it’s important to consider individual hobbies and interests–some boys are quite into gaming, while others are into tech, reading, or sports, for instance.
And 14-year-old boys have a great deal of range of goals, ambitions, as well as amazing talents. Take Benicio Bryant, one of the season’s finalists of the reality tv show America’s Got Talent. Now 15 and ready to start high school, he was just 14 when he auditioned for the show, stunning judges and viewers with his gift for singing original songs with powerful changes in pitch. He has over eighty thousand subscribers on YouTube, and likely a promising career ahead.
Jacob Barnett was also just 14, but he is known for giving what is today one of the most popular Ted Talks. Described as a ‘teenage astrophysicist’, he has already published research and gave one of the most engaging speeches, especially remarkable for someone who is autistic.
Of course, not every 14 years old is accomplishing major feats, and that’s perfectly fine. 14-year-old boys, at their best, are brimming with energy, creativity, and amazing capabilities. 14 is also a time of change, where tastes can be somewhat mercurial, making it all that much more difficult to shop for the best gits.
This guide will help you do just that, no matter what the 14-year-old you’re shopping for is most interested in. We’ll discuss the difficulties that can come when trying to find the best gifts for a 14-year-old boy, then look at gifts for a variety of interests, and at different price points so that no matter your budget, you can feel confident about what you’re gifting.
What are some of the challenges I need to understand about 14-year-old boys?
Whether you’re a parent of a 14-year-old boy or not, 14, as we mentioned is a time of transition, from pre-teen to teenage years, and along with it, new obstacles, needs, and interests.
- At this age, boys (and girls) should be getting an average of sixty minutes of physical activity. That can include sports, but also walks, hikes, and workouts.
- Personal responsibility is also the main goal at this age. Beyond helping out around the house, 14-year-old boys should be encouraged to develop their own interests and hobbies.
- However, volunteer work, engagement with peers, and other social activities are both important and engaging.
- It’s also an age where boys are especially engaged with social media. While that can be a way to make social connections, research has linked excessive use, or even sometimes regular, use of social media with lower self-esteem, peer pressure, and other negative impacts, so striking a balance and setting healthy boundaries is key.
- Emotions are in flux, as 14 is an age where boys may grow quite a bit, experience changing in self-esteem, and question independence vs parental authority. However, generally, this is the age before major challenges where many boys retain a good deal of childhood energy and optimism, making 14 a rather interesting age.
- Bullying, possibly dating, and general accidents are also things to keep in mind for 14-year-old boys.
Why is it important to understand these challenges and changes when shopping for the best gifts for a 14-year-old boy?
The best gifts for a fourteen-year-old boy can prove to be not only entertaining, but also in line with their current needs, interests, and even help boys develop emotionally, intellectually and socially.
There is no one best gift for a 14-year-old boy because every 14-year-old boy will have needs and interests unique to them. The best gifts come from a variety of gifts, where entertainment and development needs are considered. We also want a blend of technology and gifts that are not technologically based. While technology is a real and integral part of nearly everyone’s lives, experts recommend limiting screen time to avoid negative effects.
Excessive screen time, for instance, has been correlated with lower grades in school, as well as issues with vision, weight, sleep, depression, and overall well being.
That isn’t to say any tech-based gifts are a bad idea. In fact, many tech-based gifts will make our list of best gifts for 14-year-old boys. Tech-based gifts can be educational, engaging and entertaining. The key is to strike a balance between tech-based and non-tech-based gifts.
How do I start looking for the best gifts for 14-year-old boys?
Finding the best gifts for 14-year-old boys can be overwhelming if you aren’t sure where to start. The good news is that simply by asking the following questions, you can already narrow down your choices:
What hobbies or activities do they enjoy?
Think outside of broad categories and instead consider how the boy chooses to use most of the free time. You might also want to consider gifts for related interests, such as a related sport or game, but that challenges them to try something a bit different.
What’s the occasion?
Of course, not all gifts make sense for all occasions. For both birthdays and holidays, often casual gifts will do, but when celebrating milestones or accomplishments, think about gifts that might be meaningful and representative for the occasion.
What’s your budget?
Simple as this sounds, it’s nonetheless an important question. What is your current budget, and is there any wiggle room? And an important thing to keep in mind is that you can find gifts on any budget.
Are they younger or older acting 14 years old?
14-year-old boys can range quite a bit in terms of emotional, physical, and social maturity; for this reason, some 14-year-old boys may be pleased with gifts also loved by 13-year-olds, while others may even get some use out of gifts intended for those slightly older.
What do they already have?
Remember, when it comes to gifts, especially for 14-year-old boys, it’s all a matter of balance, consider what they already have and what activities would make the most sense.
Do they have any academic interests?
Strange as it may seem, some of the best gifts can also overlap with educational interests, from books in nearly every topic to STEM-related electronics, kits, and more.
Think outside of the box
In this article, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best gifts for 14-year-old boys, but perhaps the best advice is to simply be open to ideas. Innovative ideas and gifts you might not otherwise have known about may just be some of the gifts they’ll remember most.
What are the best gifts for 14-year-old boys?
Now let’s take a look at some of the best gifts for 14-year-old boys. These gifts will be divided into neat categories so you can easily peruse and find the best gifts for the boy you’re shopping for. Also, with gifts at every price point, it will be easy to find a gift that makes sense for you and your situation.
There’s a common misconception that 14-year-old boys don’t like reading, which is not only untrue for many but also quite limiting. In truth, from the book lover to the avid sports fan, books can really prove to be excellent gifts that leave a lasting impression–and you don’t need to stick with novels either. Gift books, advice, and sportsbooks or even how-to books can also appeal to a 14-year-old boy.
Need an e-book reader? We recommend the following:
- Kindle Paperwhite: Now with waterproof technology, the Kindle Paperwhite comes with 8 or 32GB storage and in black or blue cases. Of the Kindles, it’s the most lightweight and it works with Bluetooth. It retails currently at one hundred and thirty dollars.
- Kobo Aura H20 is a bit more expensive, retailing for around one hundred and eighty dollars. Considered among the best for waterproof technology, it’s compact, includes technology to reduce blue light, and boasts a long battery life, with 8GB of storage.
- Rising Above: How 11 Athletes Overcame Challenges in Their Youth to Become Stars by Gregory Zuckerman: Not much of a reader? That’s not a problem with this digestible, fun book featuring how famous athletes overcame obstacles.
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey: This may not sound like the most thrilling gift; to be sure it’s unlikely to elicit excitement right away. But open up the cover and we’ll find easy, readable chapters, filled with illustrations, real-life examples and plenty of humor. These habits really are transformative to improving nearly every aspect as a young teens’ life, all told in an engaging, relatable and even entertaining way, making it clear why it’s been a bestseller nearly since it first came out.
- Unbroken (The Young Adult Adaptation): An Olympian’s Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive by Lauren Hillebrand: If you have a boy who is interested in history, nonfiction, or inspiring stories, consider this young adult adaption of what is now not only a bestseller but also a motion picture. Unbroken tells the story of a former Olympian whose plane crashed into enemy territory during the second world war.
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie has been a hit since it was first published now a decade ago. What has become a younger adult classic is the semi-autobiographic novel of Junior, who dreams of becoming a cartoonist and grows up on the Spokane Indian Reservation, exploring issues of identity with humor.
- The Maze Runner by James Dashner: If your 14-year-old boy likes sci-fi and fantasy but already has the classic (Lord of the Rings; Harry Potter), this best selling series offers a fast-paced and exciting read. Already read it? Check out Barnes and Noble’s fifty most anticipated YA fantasy books for 2019.
From sports to lawn games and everything in between, gifts for the outdoors give 14-year-old boys incentive to get off their gaming consoles or computer screens for a while and get much-needed air and exercise, both of which are tied to improved mental and physical health.
Fun Sports Equipment
They don’t need to be an athlete to enjoy sports equipment that’s a bit innovative and different than your typical football.
- GlowCity Light Up Basketball-Uses Two High Bright LEDs: LED lights are activated upon impact and made to last game after game, perfect for playing after dark or even to just add a bright note to a pickup game, retailing just under twenty-five dollars.
- Nite Ize Flashflight LED Light Up Flying Disc, Glow in The Dark for Night Games: Ultimate Frisbee is quite popular, and this frisbee is anything but ordinary, featuring LED lights and a balanced design for fast travel, retailing for under twenty dollars.
- Hover Soccer Ball: This hover soccer ball can be used both in and outdoors and adds a new fun twist to classic soccer games, with movement similar to air hockey; available for thirty dollars, or fifteen dollars on sale.
Lawn games are a great way to be social, and there are many lawn games that may appeal to 14-year-old boys in particular.
- Win SPORTS Giant Wooden Lawn Game? Yard Dice Set with 6 Dice,2 Dry Erase Yardkle Yardzee with 2 Marker Pens and Carrying Bag(3.5″ Dice): Perfect for outside but also larger indoor spaces, this oversized dice game is a fun twist on a Yahtzee game. The game comes with a total of six dice and a duffel bag for carrying and storage and appeals to 14-year-old boys but also family activities, and costs under twenty-five dollars.
- GoSports Solid Wood Premium Cornhole Set – Choose Between 4’x2′ or 3’x2′ Game Boards | Includes Set of 8 Corn Hole Toss Bags: Cornhole is a classic toss game that’s easy to set up and hard to go wrong with. Though it retails over one hundred dollars, this classic has high replay value.
- AmazonBasics Ladder Toss Outdoor Lawn Game Set with Soft Carrying Case – 40 x 24 Inches, Red and Blue: Ladderball is another excellent classic, easy to transport, and perfect when they’re an athlete or not involved in sports at all. This is lightweight, perfect for two to four players, and costs around thirty-five dollars.
Board and Card Games
Board and card games, despite popular perception, actually do continue to enjoy popularity–and it just so happens that there are many options for 14-year-old boys.
- Catan: Chances are that you’ve at least heard of this best selling board game, and for good reason. This strategy trading game was awarded the Game of the Century” award, and this classic version now comes with an expanded guide. At thirty-five dollars, it has excellent replay value; if they really like it, there are also expansions available. Days of Wonder Ticket to Ride is another popular trading based board game, but with a focus on trains and transportation. For the history lover, there’s Splendor, a trading game based during the European Renaissance, or Scythe, an alternative history board game dealing with farming and war.
- Pun Intended – It’s All Pun and Games – Perfect Game for Pun Lovers: Humor minded 14-year-old boys will have a good deal of fun with. It includes 222 cards, far more puns, and a scorecard, for a retail price of twenty dollars.
- PlayMonster 5 Second Rule Game – New Edition: This fun, rapid-fire card game is perfect for playing with friends or at parties and is like an updated, word version of Pictionary, full of lengths, challenges, and replay value, priced under twenty dollars.
Of course, no list for gifts for 14-year-old boys would be complete without electronics and tech-based gifts. While video games, for PC, console, and online are always options, we’ll be focusing instead of electronic and tech-based gifts you may not have thought of.
Science, technology, engineering, and math are all hot career fields, but one of the best ways to get boys interested in STEM is to introduce toys, activities, and hobbies that do just that with fun and innovative ways, and the following options do just that:
- Robotic Arm Edge by Adafruit Industries: This robotic arm is more sophisticated and challenging than some robot kits intended for younger kids. Not only does this teach coding, but it also allows you to use for practical purposes, such as gripping objects. The finished robot will have a wide range of mobility; this kit retails for under seventy dollars. A more exhaustive, and also expensive option, Makeblock DIY Ultimate Robot Kit, which teaches not only coding, but also graphical, Python, and Arduino programming–for three hundred and fifty dollars.
- da Vinci Mini Wireless 3D Printer: 3D printing can be done at home, school, or anywhere that has access to reliable wi-fi. Compact and lightweight, this 3D printer comes with free software. You purchase from independent sellers for around two hundred dollars or go with the more current Nano Printer, which costs about two hundred and thirty dollars.
- Creation Crate Subscription: This subscription service delivers kits with instructions and activities every month and includes lessons on circuits and coding. You’ll be using breadboards, jumper wires and resisters; perfect for a 14-year-old boy new to STEM. The monthly plans cost thirty dollars per month, and you can also prepay for three, six, and twelve-month plans at a discount.
- The Original BUDDHA BOARD: For the budding artist, or even just the 14-year-old boy who enjoys sketching and doodling is the Buddha Board, a sort of handheld smart board for drawing. This one is water-based and meant to help relax while also being relatively easy to use, for a price point of around thirty-five dollars.
- Virtual Reality Headsets may encourage more gaming time, best rest assured many 14-year-old boys will enjoy them. The Oculus Go – 32GB Stand-Alone Virtual Reality Headset is highly rated and lightweight, with a comfortable fit, high-resolution fast-switch LCD screen, and high-quality audio and video, plus built-in speakers, retailing for two hundred dollars.
- Holy Stone HS370 FPV Drone with Camera for Kids and Adults 720P HD WiFi Transmission: While there are ample options for drones for kids, this an excellent balance–not too simple but not so advanced it’s not suited for a 14-year-old boy. The drone features 3D flips, a one-touch return button, and a built-in gravity center; priced at a reasonable forty dollars.
- Smartwatches will also be a welcome gift for many 14-year-old boys. Options include the Apple Watch Series 4, Samsung Galaxy Watch Active (for Android), and Fossil Sport (Android). Smartwatches of this caliber tend to range from two hundred and fifty to three hundred and fifty dollars.
Clothes and Merchandise
Last but not least, sometimes some fun clothing makes for a nice gift for 14-year-old boys. Even if they are hard to buy for, some fun accessory pieces can make a statement without a large investment.
- Gaming shirts include funny saying, are versatile, and the fit doesn’t even have to be perfect. Check out some of our favorites, including the If I have to pause shirt, My Perfect Day, and 7th Gamer Tee. All are fairly expensive and come in a wide range and sizes and colors.
- Laptop Backpack for boys & Men Anti Theft Waterproof School Bookbag with USB Charging Port: A backpack may not seem thrilling, but this sophisticated option will be perfect even for high school and beyond, complete with theft protection, a USB charging port, and waterproof material, priced under thirty dollars.
- Under Armour Boys’ Armour Fleece Sleeve Hoodie: This hoodie is perfect for outdoor sports or just staying warm in style, with fleece lining, lightweight polyester, and brilliant color. There are also men’s’ versions for additional sizes, in a variety of fleece and athletic hoodies from Under Armour.