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Many children are spending more time than ever at home, thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and it’s safe to say that it’s been challenging for many parents to keep their kids occupied while limiting screen time.

One idea to check out is subscription boxes. There’s a wide range of subscription box services available for all ages, ability levels, and interests, from education-focused concepts to clothes and crafts.

First and foremost, we asked real subscribers and parents who’ve tried these boxes to provide their feedback. We also chose our list of boxes based on product literature of what’s included and customer reviews, and we sought products for a variety of age ranges and skill levels.

We also kept affordability in mind: None of these boxes will set you back more than $40 per month.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $25 per month
  • $$ = over $25 per month

Best overall kids subscription box


Price: $

On top of overwhelmingly positive reviews, KiwiCo offers a wide range of award-winning “crates” grounded in STEAM/STEM learning.

The company’s nine product lines are designed for different age groups, ranging from 0 to 14+. Crates are delivered once a month, and products are available for purchase on the website.

Best subscription box for babies

Lovevery The Play Kits

Price: $$

Lovevery’s Montessori-inspired play kits are a great option for babies and toddlers at every stage of their young lives. The website allows you to enter your child’s name and birthdate before recommending a play kit for the stage they’re in.

Baby kits are delivered every 2 months and toddler kits every 3 months. All products are also made of natural and sustainable materials.

Best subscription box for preschoolers


Price: $$

This monthly box is customized to your child’s age and stage, up to the preschool level. You can also preview the items — which typically include toys and entertaining books — before you receive them.

Best subscription box for elementary kids

Sensory TheraPLAY Box

Price: $$

Although this box can be enjoyed by all kids ages 5 to 9 years, it was originally created by a pediatric occupational therapist for children on the autism spectrum, as well as those who are high energy and anxiety prone.

Each box contains a mix of crafts, activities, and textured toys meant to improve fine motor development.

Best subscription box for tweens and teens

STRONG self(ie)

Price: $

Aimed at empowering young girls, this subscription box offers up a range of inspirational products for teens and tweens, with the BLOOM box targeted toward 8- to 12-year-olds and the BURST geared toward 13- to 17-year-olds.

Best subscription box for kids who like to cook


Price: $

If your child loves to help out in the kitchen at dinnertime, this might be the fun box project they need. Each box is intended to serve as a themed cooking class that also allows kids to hone math, science, and history skills at the same time.

Each box comes with recipes, kitchen tools, and a grocery list (note: food is not included) to help kids learn new kitchen concepts. These boxes are geared toward kids ages 4 to 14, with some adult supervision.

Best subscription box for kids who like STEM

STEM Discovery Boxes

Price: $$

If your child loves learning and is passionate about science, technology, engineering or math (STEM), this is the subscription box for them.

STEM Discovery Boxes offer science kits for kids anywhere from age 7 to 17. Each box includes hands-on electronics, as well as chemistry and physics projects and experiments.

MEL Science

Price: $$

For kids who love to build but are more science-oriented than art-focused, these boxes provide a lesson and materials to build a fun project that will leave them feeling a sense of accomplishment upon finishing an experiment.

Best subscription box for kids who like to explore

Little Passports

Price: $

If your child’s already been bitten by the travel bug, this subscription box will let them indulge their passion of learning about culture and geography, minus the flight and airfare.

Little Passports offers an Early Explorers plan for kids ages 3 to 5, as well as options for older children. The company also offers STEM-themed boxes for those with more science-focused interests. You can choose to pay per month or subscribe for 6 or 12 months.

“Within minutes of opening their Little Passports box, my daughters (ages 7 and 5) were playing make-believe, pretending to be archeologists and world travelers, exploring countries they’ve only ever heard about,” says Parenthood editor Saralyn Ward.

Best subscription box for kids who like crafts

Cratejoy We Craft Box

Price: $

If your kids love arts and crafts, Cratejoy’s We Craft box will allow them to get in touch with their creative side. These monthly boxes each come with a theme and story, along with art and craft supplies to build their corresponding project.

Each box is meant to be shared between two kids between the ages of 3 to 9, so this is a great option for two siblings or if your child is heading off to a playdate. Cratejoy also offers adult boxes if you and a friend or partner want to partake in the fun as well.

Best subscription box for kids who love to read

Kid Curated Books

Price: $$

There’s no better habit to feed once you’ve figured out that your child is a bookworm. This subscription box lets them select their genre preferences, from rhyming or picture books to historical fiction.

Each box comes with four books, and you can choose to receive them as often as every month. As an added bonus, if you receive a book your child has already read, you can donate it to the library and the company will issue you a credit.

Best subscription box for kids clothing


Price: $

Geared toward both boys and girls ages 2 to 16, kidpik is a great option for the fashion-forward child. The company sends eight clothing items (including shoes) based on the recipient’s preselected preferences, with a week to decide what they want to keep or return from each box.

Subscribers pay for each item they keep from each box and get 30 percent off each item if they keep everything. Each box also comes with a fun gift, and subscribers have the option to receive one box every month, every 2 months, or every 3 months.

Parenthood editor Ward says the best part is that the clothes are kid-approved, with tons of sparkle, style, and statement pieces to get excited about.

Best subscription box for kids who like to be outdoors

Think Outside

Price: $$

If your kids love being outside, whether it’s going on a hiking adventure or simply exploring the local park, this box — aimed at kids age 7 and older — will keep them unplugged and having fun.

Each box comes with a backpack (your kid can choose the color), as well as an activity booklet, resource cards, outdoor challenges and gear to add to the backpack.