From Shopkins and gogo’s (not the band), many pocket-sized collectable toys have made their way through our home. When I first heard about Gift’ems I thought these were more of the same but I have to admit I love their travel aspect.

Presented in wrapped up little gift boxes, a surprise tucked inside, kids will find a mini friend to escape around the world. Along with a little girl traveler (there aren’t any boys), the gift box itself features a country flag and images from the city.

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Of course the big appeal for kids will be the collectability. One of the first things my daughter did was download the app which outlines the various girls and the collectability status (common, rate, ultra rare, special edition, and limited edition) as well as keep track of which girls they own. The Series 1 release has 84 different ones to collect. The Limited Edition Snow sets include the girls dressed in snow gear and come with a snowboard.

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For added fun, and another reason to drive kids toward collecting, the pieces are interchangeable. That means if you have two or more characters, you can swap their hair and their body and bottom to create a new style. This sort of gives you an extra girl or two at no cost.

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If as a parent you are thinking these are just another small toy obsession for kids to collect, you are partially right. However, with the travel connection you can add a little learning fun by encouraging your kid to:

  • Recreate the country flag for each of their characters
  • Have a memory game of the various maps and spelling of the city names
  • Research, alone or with you, a little bit about the country the character is from (types of food, dress, weather)
  • Locate the country and city on a map, globe or atlas. If you have more than one character, place them all on a world map and see how close or far apart they are as friends.
  • Learn how to say “hello” in the primary language of their various characters
  • Predict how many new character combinations can be created based on their interchangeable parts. Create a chart to keep track of the actual combinations as your child completes them. Was she close?

Sometimes we can’t travel to far off destinations with the family. How do you encourage discovery and appreciation with your for other countries