If you’re shopping for children’s toys this Christmas, you may have noticed that in each store and in every catalogue, there is a category for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) toys. If you look through the STEM section, you will find items with big claims of teaching coding to preschoolers and chemistry to first graders. Remember to overlook the hype and consider how an item really works and what you like about it before finalizing a purchase.
3 STEM Learning Tips
Since STEM learning is such a popular area right now, I have a few tips on how to be effective in teaching your child with toys. You don’t have to have a technical background to teach children sophisticated concepts. Simply allowing children to play with with high quality toys can help them come to conclusions independently. Check out three tips shared by Theresa’s Reviews to help parents encourage STEM learning.
1. Give your children access to STEM toys that interest them.
Having STEM toys that interest your children readily available can help get your children excited to learn. For an effective learning experience, don’t just buy a product because you want your child to master a specific skill. Consider how comfortable your child is in that area and whether she enjoys similar activities.
If your child is good at building but not ready for tiny building pieces, the Magformers Power Sound 59 piece set is a good choice. Simply having it in my house got my children willing and eager to participate in hands on learning experiences.
When you first begin selecting STEM toys to have in your home, try out a few different types. Samantha has tried many different types of building toys as well as other science and technology toys. Some go over well, and some are a total flop. Since Magformers are simple to put together, they are ideal for her early motor skill development.
2. Encourage independent learning.
One of the best parts of STEM learning is that children can make meaningful discoveries independently. Trying out new concepts helps children learn key ideas, even if they don’t know the scientific vocabulary that goes with their learning yet.
With this particular model of Magformers, Samantha immediately dove in and began constructing. With such a high tech set, children can use their science knowledge of movement, sound, and light, while also using engineering to build. Since she has strong reading skills, she read the instruction manual and followed directions to make different designs.
Even without reading skills, children can do independent STEM learning. Georgiana loved putting together the square magnets. As soon as she opened the box, she was drawn to the simple square magnets. To help encourage her interests, I got her the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle 38 piece set. Since the set is simpler than the one Samantha has, it is more age appropriate for early learners.
Children of all ages can have fun playing independently if they are playing with a toy that challenges them appropriately. With Magformers, children are challenged at just the right level. Since the sets are not too hard and not too easy, children stay interested, and can put together the set without help.
3. Shop for quality.
Not all STEM toys are made to last. If you buy items that are strong, your children will get more use out of them. You should consider how the toy is manufactured.
Made for durability, Magformers are Rare Earth Neodymium magnets welded in BPA free, HQABS plastic. Our family has played with these toys for years, and we have always had great experiences.
When you’re shopping for children’s toys this Christmas, what types of toys are on your list?
I received a free item, but it in no way influenced my opinion.