When it comes to the holidays, I admit, though I am not proud of it, of being one of those last-minute gift shoppers.  I will not go into listing all the reasons why I always seem to end up shopping at the last minute; however, I will emphasize one positive thing that comes from this bad habit, although it evolves time: I am better at choosing the right gifts. Therefore, this is my last minute shopping list (created with a blessing of the parents).

Scalextric iPad Race Control System

Cars racing will never get old-fashioned, and it seems nothing can beat these toys. This is a great option for kids interested in Formula 1. The new Scalextic Race Control System is paired up with your iPad, so it  lets you control every part of the race, which, I suppose, makes watching cars moving around in circles sort of a new experience. This control makes this race more exciting because the app can control the speed, implement things like pit stops and virtual fuel tanks, and tire wear. Races are also timed; and the results can be posted on Twitter or Facebook.

Monopoly zAPPed

Another old-fashioned toy that is very popular today among the kids is the board game Monopoly zAPPed, the board that has an accompanying app. With this app, the famous board game gives kids a new way to play it due to these new functionalities through iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. Once you load the free monopoly zAPPed app onto the device, kids can use it as a bank to transfer funds, get tips and hints on how to play it, and enjoy funny animations and mini games.

Revell Nano Qaudcopter

This kit is designed to be affordable. Revell Nano Quadcopter, which fits into the palm of your hand (the smallest quadrocopter in the world) flies for five minutes after a 30 minutes charge. In spite of its size, the toy is quick and highly versatile once your kid masters the controls. The only drawback is that the device is fragile, which is understandable given its size.

Loopz Shifter Game

This electronic game of music, memory, and motion will challenge your kids to play it. It features 20 ways to play with options that include four different games and five unique shapes. The loops flash with changing patterns of light and sounds, and require players to pass their hands through the infrared motion sensors. The game is competitive, so it will boost the competitive spirits, and it is a great toy to develop memory, coordination, and reflexes. The best part is that with Freestyle DJ, kids can create their own music.

LeapReader Pen

This great toy is designed to improve the literacy of the youngsters (four to eight-year-old). It follows a tag reading system and works with the library of more than 150 reading, audio, and activity books. The pen improves reading and writing skills as it teaches children to say letters, words, and to write them. The pen instructs kids via a built-in speaker as they trace the letter in workbooks while the paper in the workbooks incorporates the embedded ink. A truly amazing thing that will both entertain and teach kids.

As for the apps and games, you can always decide to encourage your children to learn programming if you think they are already interested into it. There are great games and apps that can either introduce them into coding or take their knowledge to the next level.

I hope this list will be useful, and according to my associate’s careful reviews (that is my friends who are parents who helped me create it,) that at least one of these toys will end up on your list as well.