Gift ideas for kids | Sending our love and aid to those in need

NOVEMBER 2018 UPDATE: Gift list is still active! Shop and share!

In 2016, we felt called to create a social justice gift blog post, and we were happy to hear our followers found it both helpful and meaningful. Continuing the focus on compassion during the holidays, we decided to create another list in 2017, this time featuring ideas of gifts for children and using Amazon affiliate links to raise money for people in need (which was Puerto Rico at that time). This gift list is still active, and any proceeds will continue to go to our choice of charities throughout the year.

JANUARY 2018 UPDATE: Thank you for helping us raise $225 for Puerto Rico through the holiday season!

Original post:

Welcome to our holiday gifts for kids list!

We are using Amazon affiliate links for this list to raise funds for our neighbors in Puerto Rico--50% of whom are still without power and many without homes or jobs--in the aftermath of devastating Hurricane Maria and subsequent storms this year. For each purchase you make using the links in this list--as well as most other items purchased in the same transaction--we will receive a small portion of the sale from Amazon and we will designate it for our donation. We invite you to utilize this list in your holiday shopping to help us raise funds for our organization of choice: Hispanic Federation's UNIDOS Disaster Relief and Recovery Program.

These gift ideas were personally selected by us based on a combination of factors: favorite items of our own three children, recommendations from friends, and bestsellers. Each item we feature also has excellent reviews. We aimed to encompass a wide range of ages, interests, and prices. We encourage you to share this in your circles! Note, current sale prices aren't always reflected in the list, so it's worth clicking if you are interested in an item.

Thank you for helping us give back and support those less fortunate this holiday season!



On the Move


Puzzles and Games




safe tools for curious kids




Imaginative Play


Music, Arts, and Crafts


Kick, Catch, and Throw


Infants and Toddlers


Tweens and Teens


Books (infants - 6)

Burt's Way Home
By John Martz
The Book with No Pictures
By B. J. Novak
The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors
By Drew Daywalt
By Kathryn Otoshi
Press Here
By Herve Tullet

Books (6-10)

Her Right Foot
By Dave Eggers
Malala's Magic Pencil
By Malala Yousafzai
The Magic Misfits
By Neil Patrick Harris
My Journey to the Stars
By Scott Kelly
Freedom in Congo Square (Charlotte Zolotow Award)
By Carole Boston Weatherford
The One and Only Ivan: A Harper Classic
By Katherine Applegate

Books (10+)

The Wild Robot
By Peter Brown
By R. J. Palacio
By Alan Gratz
By Nidhi Chanani
The Crossover
By Kwame Alexander

stocking stuffers

A Morning with Leo: Northern Virginia {Spectrum Inspired} Family Photographer

When I was invited to join the Spectrum Inspired team last year, I instantly knew it would be a meaningful experience, though I admit I was nervous sensing the weight of my responsibility to raise awareness about Autism while documenting families honestly and creatively. I decided I would do as I always do and simply follow my heart to seek out the moments with meaning and beauty. Then I was assigned my first Spectrum Inspired session, and I read their story and smiled inside, so excited for the opportunity to serve this wonderful and deserving family.

When I showed up for Leo's session, my initial intent was to just really see Leo for who he is, appreciating all that makes him unique, and translating that into artful images. And in the highlights from his session below, I hope that is apparent. You will see the enchanting way Leo's beloved objects bring him joy and comfort...his Woody, bubbles, balloons, his oral sensory toy, and his fondness for fetching bread from the refrigerator.

But even beyond getting to know him in the short time we were together, what revealed itself to me unexpectedly and took my breath away was the intense and intimate bond that Leo shares with his parents. A connection that I struggle to describe in words but which is woven throughout these images, the tender and purposeful touches, the warmth and comfort, and the radiant pride for who Leo is and how far he has come. Leo is loved wholly and supported fully, as it should be, yet there is something more that transcends the parental love I have known and witnessed. It is as if Leo is still connected by some energy to the womb, to his safe place, where their fingers connect and instantly his body relaxes, and where he basks in the calm and loving gaze of his mother. A most profound, uncomplicated kind of love. It was a true honor to behold.

When I asked her if she'd like to share her perspective as part of this blog story, Leo's mother responded with these sentiments: My family and I are incredibly grateful that we had the opportunity to share a glimpse into our world through the perspective of such a truly talented photographer. Your genuine warmth, and love for your craft created such a special atmosphere; one that allowed each of us to feel comfortable and at ease throughout the shoot. You captured our life with our son, Leo, who has Autism; his beautiful spirit, and our love for one another in such a raw and honest way. We will forever cherish these images, and be able to look back on these moments and instantly feel that love.

And I, too, will always feel the weight and love of these moments when I look back on the images and remember my morning with Leo.

To learn more about Spectrum Inspired, or to apply for a session, please visit

12 Hand-picked Gift Ideas that Promote Inclusivity and Peace for the Activists in your Life

In light of post-election acts of violence and intimidation here in the U.S., and in recognizing the ongoing fight for equal treatment and acceptance, we enter this holiday season with our hearts wide open to all the ways we can support our brothers and sisters who feel vulnerable, and how we can plant seeds of peace for future generations. Many of us are wondering what we can do to make a difference, if even on a small scale. One simple way to stand up for social justice causes is to make a conscious choice to use your dollars in a meaningful way. That is where our holiday gift list comes in!

We are excited to present to you 12 hand-selected gift ideas (and an abundance of equally awesome runner-ups) that promote social justice, equality, inclusivity, and awareness. We keep our focus small here: gifts that benefit marginalized and oppressed minority groups in the U.S., either as purchases supporting their non-profit organizations OR as items that speak up on behalf of these groups, opening up conversations and promoting education and awareness. At the bottom of this page, you will also find a collection of organizations where you can make a financial donation in lieu of a tangible gift.

Thanks for shopping responsibly and making a difference this holiday season! Also, in honor of Small Business Saturday, we recommend making book purchases through IndieBound online or your local independent bookstore, when possible. 

Disclaimer: This is only a suggested list. Angie Klaus Photography + Films has not received compensation for these recommendations, does not benefit from any purchases, and cannot be held responsible for any outcome related to the purchase of these products.

For the Tiny Activist

A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara

An alphabet book with a progressive twist that promotes ideas of equality, civil rights, and acceptance of immigrants and LGBTQ individuals. 

Honorable mentions: And Tango Makes Three, The Ruth Onesie, The Family Book, The Chickens Build a Wall

For the Playground Activist

Let's Talk About Race by Julius Lester

Newberry Award winning author Julius Lester tells the story of himself and introduces race as a part of his story. Accompanied by beautiful paintings, the book engages its readers by asking questions and creating a dialogue to open up the conversation on race. This also makes a great classroom or teacher gift.

Honorable mentions: Rad American Women A to ZSeparate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,  My Name is Bilal, Extraordinary Women of the Muslim World

For the Teen Activist

March by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell

Teens can learn the history of the civil rights movement from one of its greatest leaders. This autobiographical graphic novel trilogy from Congressman John Lewis covers his experiences...from lunch counter sit-ins, to police beatings as a freedom rider, and culminates in the Selma to Montgomery marches. The series is the first graphic novel to win a National Book Award. Previous honors include the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, the Eisner Award, two Harvey Awards, and a Coretta Scott King Author Honor.

Honorable mentions: Brown Girl Dreaming, It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living, Dreamers: An Immigrant Generation's Fight for Their American DreamWe Are Americans: Undocumented Students Pursuing the American Dream

For the Bookworm Activist

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

The New Jim Crow describes how discrimination against criminals has replaced outright racism as a means of creating inequality in our society. It uncovers how, through institutionalized racial targeting, the justice system has become a surrogate to justify discrimination in a supposedly colorblind America.

Honorable mentions: No God but God, An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United StatesBetween the World and Me, Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis

For the Art-Loving Activist

Painting for Peace in Ferguson and Painting for Peace: A Coloring Book for All Ages by Carol Swartout Klein

A children's book about how artists in Ferguson, MO came together to restore the community following the protests in 2014. It can be accompanied by a namesake coloring book with simple to elaborate designs based on the works of art created in Ferguson and including messages of peace, love, and community. All profits go toward Ferguson-area youth and art programs, and small businesses affected by the protests. 

Honorable mentions: Migration related prints from the Justseeds Artists' Cooperative, Topaz Moon: Chiura Obata's Art of the Internment

For the Music-Loving Activist

Border Songs: A Collection of Music and Spoken Word by Various Artists

This eclectic 2-CD compilation album features artists from both sides of the U.S-Mexico border (from Sweet Honey in the Rock and Pete Seeger to Michael Franti, Pachuco, and Calexico) sharing songs that reflect the impacts of U.S. border policy. All profits go to support the efforts of No More Deaths, a southern Arizona humanitarian organization that provides water, food, and medical care to migrants crossing the desert.  The CD was a limited release and the remaining copies are difficult to find online, but it's available on Amazon from third party sellers, but those proceeds would no longer benefit No More Deaths. 

Honorable Mentions: Classic Protest Songs from Smithsonian FolkwaysDark Was the Night from Red Hot, Sounds of Indian Summer: Contemporary Native Music from the National Museum of the American Indian

For the Theatre-Loving Activist

From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert for Orlando

A 2-CD set and DVD from the July 25, 2016 benefit concert in the aftermath of the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida. The concert featured performances from some of the biggest names on Broadway, including many Tony Award winners, accompanied by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra. Net proceeds will be donated to local central Florida charities that support the LGBTQ community. 

Honorable mentions: 2016 Tony Award T-Shirt from Broadway Cares,  Hamilton Mixtape

For the T-shirt-Loving Activist

Rainbow Mountain T-shirt from Revel and Riot

Revel and Riot is a non-profit group that creates graphics and products to support LGBTQ rights. This shirt transforms Gilbert Baker's rainbow flag design into an image that reflects the continuing struggle for LGBTQ equality. It's great for both LGBT and allies. 

Honorable mentions: Take on Hate T-shirt, Official Standing Rock Shirt

For the Coffee-Loving Activist

What Did I Do? Cup from The Democratic Cup

This cup features the images of Michael Brown, Philando Castile, Sandra Bland, Trayvon Martin, Alton Sterling, and Oscar Grant along with a poetic quote along its inner rim. The cup is part of a set of 22 cups designed by 32 ceramic artists and illustrators with themes to create dialogue and counteract hateful speech. These limited edition ceramic cups are handcrafted in North Carolina and take 3 weeks to create and ship. Net proceeds will be donated to non-profit organizations.

Honorable mentions: Saint Basil CoffeeRed Bay Coffee

For the Jewelry-Loving Activist

HRC Cable Bracelet

This simple but stylish cable bracelet features the equal sign logo of the Human Rights Campaign. Consider this or other jewelry from HRC. HRC is the largest LGBTQ organization with over 1.5 million members and supporters nationwide. 100% of every purchase goes to HRC’s fight for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer equality.

Honorable mentions: Civil Rights Jewelry from Dana WaldenJewelry from Until there's a CureJewelry from From War to Peace, Native American Jewelry

For the Activist Couple

Rainbow Glitter Edition Brut Sparkling Wine by One Hope Wine

A sparkling wine in a sparkling rainbow bottle. The wine is part of the glitter bottle collection, with each bottle supporting a different charitable cause. Each rainbow bottle funds 15 minutes of operational costs on The Trevor Project's lifeline, providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth. Purchase a single bottle online, or consider hosting a wine tasting event, where you can choose the charity for which to donate 15% of the profits.

Honorable mentions: No Different print by Brian Andreas, Pendleton Blankets for the American Indian College FundProsperity CandlesWine from Justice Grace Vinyards

For the Organized Activist

2017 Liberation Calendar by Ricardo Levins Morales

This 2017 calendar features beautiful liberation-themed art by Ricardo Levins Morales from over four decades, and includes notes on significant dates from the liberation struggle. Also consider Justice Notecards by the same artist.

Honorable Mentions: White Paper Matters Social Justice StationeryJustice Plan Book for TeachersSlingshot Activist Organizer

Direct Donations

When a tangible gift is not necessary, we recommend direct donations as a gift in the recipient's name. Here is a list of organizations to consider:

General Civil Rights and Support: American Civil Liberties Union, Showing Up for Racial Justice, Southern Poverty Law Center, NAACP Legal Defense Fund

Native American Rights and Support: Native American Rights Fund, Association on American Indian Affairs, Stand with Standing Rock

Jewish American Community and Social Justice Missions: Bend the Arc, National Council of Jewish Women, Jewish Women's Archive

Immigrant and Refugee Rights and Support: Welcoming Refugees, International Refugee Assistance ProjectMexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, The Dream is NowNational Immigration Law Center, United We Dream, United Farm Workers, No More Deaths

Muslim Rights and Support: Council on American-Islamic RelationsArab Community Center for Economic and Social Services, Take on Hate

LGBTQ Rights and Support: Human Rights Campaign, The Trevor Project