The STEM toy industry is booming these days, and for good reason: Toys that encourage kids to learn about science and engineering are a great way to spark their interests and motivate them to develop important skills such as problem-solving, analysis, deduction, and creativity. With so many different types of STEM toys out there though, it can be hard to know what the best type of toy is for your child. Here’s a list of some popular choices!
1 – Building sets (like Lego)
In general, building sets allow children to develop fine motor skills and use their imagination to create whatever they want. They can build a city in a matter of minutes or spend hours piecing together a complex set. Building sets are an educational toy for both genders because they have different learning curves depending on the age group.
For younger children, these sets can help them learn how certain structures work so that when they do put them together into a big project, it doesn’t fall apart immediately. For older kids, these sets will help with improving hand-eye coordination and imagination!
2 – Science kits
Science kits are a great way to get your kids interested in science because they’re hands-on and allow them to conduct their own experiments. It makes it into a game, so your children will have fun in the process rather than feel like classwork could be more interesting. Science kits are great for young boys who want to experiment with new things, but can also appeal to girls!
3 – Robot kits
Robot kits are usually cheaper than other types of STEM toys, so they may appeal to lower-income families. They can help your children with problem-solving skills when the toy malfunctions and teach them how to use tools when they build their own robot. This is also a great hands-on activity for kids because different robots in the set usually come preassembled.
4 – Geoscience Kits (such as geology or meteorology kits)
Geological science sets let children see real rocks up close which can spark an interest in geology! These sets also allow you to explore different types of rocks and minerals and their specific properties. Science plays a huge part in geoscience so this type of toy can be beneficial for advancing their understanding in science.
5 – K’NEX, Tinkertoys, and other construction sets
Construction sets are a great STEM toy because they let your children use their imaginations to make what they want! This helps them learn creativity while still allowing them to follow directions. They’re also able to improve hand-eye coordination since most of the pieces are small parts that need to fit together.
6 – Electricity kits (like Snap Circuits)
These types of toys are great for older kids because it’s necessary that they already know how circuits work before playing with this type of toy. These stretch their thinking and problem-solving skills as they try to find out how components work with each other. They can also learn about how electricity flows through different circuits, so they’ll be able to understand the components in their own circuit.
7 – Dolls or figures with accessories (like Barbie dolls)
STEM toys for girls are hard to come by! Girls can use dolls and toy figures just like boys use robot kits, but instead of building robots, they’re creating new outfits and accessories for the doll. This is a great way to get girls interested in STEM because it’s hands-on and uses creativity. It also allows them to play with something that typically doesn’t appeal to girls i.e. science or math.
8 – Puzzles (such as 3D jigsaw puzzles)
Puzzles are another type of STEM toy which is great for all ages! They stimulate the brain and work on problem-solving skills. They also enhance memory function because children have to remember what pieces fit where, so they can complete their picture. Puzzles are a great educational toy because it works on many different skills in a fun way!
9 – Trikes and bikes
Tricycles and bikes give kids the opportunity to use their skills of deduction as they learn how to ride a bike. They have to figure out how balance works, which improves coordination. These types of toys are also great for hand-eye coordination as children have to pedal in order to move forward.
10 – Toys that encourage creativity (like arts & crafts kits)
Arts & crafts kits are a great STEM toy because it stimulates creativity without even realizing it! Different art projects can improve motor function and allow children to be creative with different materials such as glue, neon paint, glitter glue, etc. This is another type of educational toy that doesn’t seem like learning but really helps develop important skills.
Take a look at the list of STEM toys and their benefits. Which ones would be best suited for your kids? We can help you find out which one is right for them! Contact us today to get started on building your perfect family toy box.