Friday, September 21, 2012

Guest Post: Christmas Gifts for Teenagers


Christmas Gifts for Teenagers

I’ll just whisper this… “Christmas is getting closer”. The countdown continues and for those of you who like to be prepared when it comes to shopping (I am of the school of panic buy around the 21st of December) here are a few tips for shopping for teenagers.
Choosing presents for teenagers can be tricky and finding something that can engage and interest them is not always easy. Here are a few tips and ideas for gifts (suitable for birthdays too) to browse over and maybe help you plan ahead!

The Science Enthusiast
If the teenager in question shows an interest in science and the natural world then there are a few gift ideas that could help nurture this interest and also get them out and about.
The wonders of the universe lie above our heads and remain a fascinating area for exploration, from NASA to your back garden! A telescope makes a wonderful gift for the budding scientist and amateur astronomer, and provides the necessary magnification to explore the moon, constellations and moving bodies of our night sky.

Telescopes come in a variety of types and the budgets can range dramatically, so I do recommend some planning, research and to get in touch with an online store who will be happy to help you out. Dobsonian telescopes (one of the types – find out more from Wikipedia) make ideal scopes for beginners and their prices reflect this and are a good choice as somebody’s first telescope.

If you know somebody who is already showing a strong interest in astronomy and would like to upgrade their scope then there are a number of options but I think that GoTo telescopes are brilliant advancements in the world of telescopes and great for younger astronomers! GoTo telecopes (some examples here from PicStop) are a form of computerised scopes which through the use of digital technology and computerised mounts can be used to help locate planetary bodies and objects as well as constellations quickly and easily. Costs are a little higher so this needs to be a factor but computerised scopes are great to help focus your time on investigating the night sky rather than hunting down the objects.

The Outdoor Enthusiast
You may struggle to get some teenagers to “unplug” themselves from games consoles or the TV but for those who already love the great outdoors and exploring the countryside there are some great gifts.
If you go camping together or know a camping fan there is a whole world of camping accessories to explore as potential gifts but here are some top gifts:

·         Wind up mobile phone charger
·         Outdoor speakers for a MP3 player – you can even find solar powered speakers which are great for if the sun is shining

·         Multi tool – a great gadget for campers – do carefully assess the age of the person you are buying for and the type of multi tool as some do contain sharp blades

·         Head torch – stop losing your torch by keeping it on your head!!
Camping is great fun, perhaps not ideal for the winter months, but these are gifts that will last and be used over and over again.

The Music Fan
Buying music for somebody can be tricky, unless you have a list of what albums they already own and a good understanding of their tastes you can easily end up buying the wrong album! Instead of wandering around music shops looking for an album you can’t quite be sure they will like here are some of my top ideas:

·         MP3 player accessories – some new headphones can make a great gift, particularly for the fashion conscious teens

·         Music gift card – a gift card (such as an iTunes card or card for a record store) can leave the decision making up to the person you are buying a gift for. This way you can help them get hold of new music but not have to worry about making the tricky decision

·         Band merchandise – there is a whole world of merchandise to explore, from posters and t-shirts to hoodies and accessories such as iPhone cases!

Don’t panic yet about Christmas shopping there is still plenty of time. I hope that you have found a few ideas here to get you started and help find some great gifts for teenagers.

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