STEM Toys: What is STEM?
STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths and offers kids fundamental learning experiences that can be applied to everyday life. Toys that utilize Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) concepts empower children to learn to take a more hands-on approach to challenges and tasks.
Things like spatial awareness and problem solving come to the forefront when playing with stem toys. These are invaluable and transferable skills. They also encourage a longer attention span for younger children, especially as they are appealing with their bright colors and interest.
4 Benefits of STEM Toys
Instills an early sense of confidence
Introducing kids to STEM at a younger age through STEM toys instills an early sense of confidence, teaching them that math and science are conquerable subjects that they can learn. When they find that they can master a science or engineering toy or game, they know they can succeed in the subject and aren’t afraid to explore it later in life.
They Introduce Kids to Various Sciences
—STEM toys are a fantastic way to hone fundamental, lifelong interests in children as young as 3. They’re especially great at instilling the notion that there are many different disciplines within STEM, and that all of them can be fun and interesting. That coding robot could inspire a future software engineer. That microscope kit could kick things off for a someday scientist. That kids’ telescope might be all it takes to set a kid up for her future working on the International Space Station. Letting youngsters explore various disciplines early makes them feel unconfined by precedent or expectation.
They Teach Problem Solving
—Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of STEM toys for young children is that they encourage healthy cognitive development, and specifically sharpen a child’s independence and ability to overcome challenges. Many toys in this category present youngsters with various perceived challenges and problems that the child must work out in order to “win” the game. Instilling problem-solving exercises early in life can help set children up for a productive, independent future.
As Cliché as It Sounds, They Make Learning Fun
—It’s a fundamental rule of parenting and education: The best way to teach is to make whatever you’re teaching fun! STEM games and toys help kids associate science with fun, freedom and discovery. Whether it’s building complex, intricate structures with LEGOs or engineering a gadget from the ground up, STEM-focused playtime is always enjoyable. It also helps youngsters connect learning and problem-solving with pleasure and pride, a connection that they will carry throughout their lives.
STEM Toy Types
Electronic STEM toys challenge kids to install circuity that powers a device. Some of the units contain all the essential accessories, while others include everyday objects like light bulbs and soda cans.
Building STEM toys introduce kids to architecture and engineering. They promote open-ended play since children can either put together their own creation or follow instructions to create a model.
Robotic STEM toys help kids create robots of their own. They can be as basic as one-dimensional robots that spin or walk, or as sophisticated as fully-fledged interactive toys. Some kids may need adult help with these toys.
Coding STEM toys encourage an interest in programming. Kids practice coding to breathe life into a device like a robot and also see how precision and accuracy in technology have a positive impact on common objects.
Biology toys cover a wide area—they explore the human body, plants, animals, and ecosystems. Apart from examination, experiments and data gathering, biology STEM toys normally involve activities with long-term environmental impact, like planting trees or setting up butterfly gardens.
Astronomy STEM toys focus on learning all about space. They study planets, constellations and the universe via scale models and telescopes. These toys challenge children to learn about the universe by asking as many questions as possible.
STEM toys are not all about fun and games but also about learning. They are designed to increase children’s interest in different aspects of engineering, science, math or anything else that involves technology. Considering how technologically-oriented the world is turning into, there’s no better time for children to begin playing and develop lifelong skills that will make their academic and professional lives a roaring success.