Science, technology, engineering and math — these subjects make up STEM, and it's clear why all four will be vital to your child's growth and success. When they grow up, they may want to pursue these interests as careers — a good thing, considering experts predict these fields will only continue to grow and create more jobs. Plus, STEM work tends to come with a healthy salary, too.
For now, your little one's far from a steady 9-to-5. Nevertheless, you can cultivate their interest in STEM-related subjects with toys that sharpen the brain. Discover five of the best options to add to your child's toy box.
1. Primary Science Lab Set
This kit focuses on the S in STEM by providing your child with a safe version of a chemistry lab. They can use their test tubes, beaker, flask, magnifying glass, tweezers and goggles to perform experiments suited to their age group.
In fact, this toy comes with a handful of little projects that make use of scientific supplies. For instance, your little one can learn about the growing cycle or their sense of smell — no mixing chemicals just yet.
2. Kamigami Jurassic World
Robotics can easily stoke your child's interest in STEM, too. The Kamigami Jurassic World kit gives your child the chance to build a functioning dinosaur. Once finished, they can use the connected app to code their dinosaur to life. In the end, the creature's eyes will light up, and it will make all of the prehistoric sounds your child could want. Plus, they can use the app to unlock more abilities.
This toy could help prepare your kid for a career in engineering, as the mechanics will lay the foundation for more advanced concepts common in fields like robotics and many other kinds of tech. This dinosaur certainly has its own version of those controls, too.
3. Camelot Jr.
With this wooden puzzle, you can spark an interest in your child to become a structural engineer down the line. Your little one can mix and match the puzzle pieces to complete 48 different challenges at varying skill levels.
The challenge book lays out all of their quests, though each one has the same mission. Using the pieces, your child has to connect the prince and the princess of the castle with bridges, stairs and towers.
Your child will love the Airblock kit, which arms them with simple materials to build a hovercraft. Don't worry — it won't hurt when this handmade foam drone falls on someone's head. It's all part of the fun in building and rebuilding the vessel into different shapes.
Much like the Jurassic World dinosaur, this toy comes with an app, too. Your child will learn basic coding skills to keep their hovercraft flying. All of this adds up to a super fun, STEM-centric toy for children ages eight and up.
5. Mini Muffin Match Up
Honing your preschooler's counting skills can lay an excellent foundation for their success in math — the M in STEM. The Mini Muffin Match Up makes it a fun game with colorful, tiny muffins your child can count, sort and match. They can also create patterns with the little figures, too.
The kit includes a muffin tin for counting and all of the faux muffins they need to begin learning about numbers. Plus, there are tweezers your child can use to pick up the plastic confections. Holding the tool builds their fine motor skills, and experts recommend these types of small toys to improve your child's finesse in this area.
Make STEM Fun With These 5 Toys
Learning can and should be fun for your children. Luckily, these five toys will make their early STEM education fit that bill. Stock up today and watch as your little one learns about science, technology, engineering and math. You'll see their world open up, and the future possibilities flood in.
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Kayla Matthews is a robotics and EdTech writer whose work has appeared on The Robot Report, Information Age, Learning Liftoff and Robotics Business Review. To read more from Kayla, please visit her tech blog.