When you need gifts for children, shopping for train sets may be the best choice. They appeal to both boys and girls and can provide hours of fun on a rainy day, and they're especially appreciated by parents who need to have the children break away from the television and video games when they're indoors.

There are many choices available to you when it comes to train sets and they are in a wide variety of prices as well. You can choose motorized models that are very detailed and which appeal even to the grownups, and which mean adding on many accessories and details.

You've probably seen these types of train sets before and you may even know some adults that have one. But does this mean they're appropriate for children?

This is something to consider when shopping for train sets for children as you want something age appropriate and that will be appreciated by the child in question, and that will be safe for him or her as well.

Getting something motorized or electric for a very young child may not be the best idea; they may think it will be fun but if it's not safe, something else may be a better option. There are many other choices for train sets you have, so it's good to consider those.

Wooden train sets are often a good choice for very young children; they're easy to manage and are safer than electric sets. They often snap together and come apart just as easily so you can add pieces and accessories as you see fit.

Again, consider the age of the child. Very small pieces may not interest an older child but larger pieces may be overwhelming to a younger child. Most train sets will have age recommendations on them just like other toys, so keep that in mind when shopping.

You may also want to think about getting the child some train sets that have a specific character on them, such as Thomas the Tank. Children love the recognition of their favorite cartoon character and these make the train sets more fun and festive for them.

When you are buying those that are specific to a certain character, make sure all the parts fit well and are compatible so you know they can play with all of them together.

When you purchase train sets you can also dress up the gift in many different ways. If you purchase a few different pieces, wrap them separately and stack them all together so it seems as if they're getting more than one gift.

You can also snake the train sets around the gift table at a party and put a large bow on one end so the child knows it's a gift and it becomes decoration as well.

Remember too that little girls enjoy train sets just as much as little boys, so don't count them out when shopping for the girls on your list.