STEM Activities (Science Technology Engineering and Math) are all the rage right now… for a reason! It’s an awesome way to get your child interactive and engaged with these subjects.
Forget the worksheets. Hands-on and using their brains through experimentation is the way to go. This post contains affiliate links.
Top STEM Activities for Kids
This year, Amazon actually asked teachers across the country to vote on their favorite STEM toys, and Amazon has been kind enough to share those choices with all of us!
Their picks will keep your kids engaged in science, technology, engineering and math STEM activities all summer (and year) long.
STEM Activities: Ages Up to 4 Years Old
The Learning Journey Match It! Counting: The Match It! Series features a wide range of award-winning educational titles. Each product in the series features self-correcting puzzle sets that introduce children to a specific educational topic or skill. The brightly illustrated puzzle cards engage children in the learning process in an entertaining way. Match It Counting includes 30 self-correcting puzzle pairs.
STEM Activities: Ages 5-7 Years
GeoCentral Excavation Dig Kit – Treasures Of The Earth: Discover the Wonders of Our World with the Geocentral Treasures of the Earth Dig Kit! Uncover 12 minerals from the 3 different layers of the Earth. Contains: Multi-colored earthen block, digging tool, brush, identification key, numbered identifiers and display box. While excavating the minerals, learn about the different layers of the Earth. A great gift for any aspiring geologist.
Young Scientist Club Clifford The Big Red Dog Rainbow Science Kit: Clifford and his friends love exploring the world around them and with this colorful kit they are learning all about RAINBOW SCIENCE! Emily Elizabeth, the narrator in the colorful 20-page manual, guides young scientists through thrilling experiments with catchy titles such as milk rainbow, mixing colors, rainbow star, ceiling rainbow, moving colors, chromatography bookmarks, colored bubbles in oil, colored bubbles in a tube, catching a rainbow, rainbow glasses, rainbow spinner and rainbow explosions. Young Scientists will feel like real scientists when they use the included colorful lab tray, measuring cup, test tubes, pipette and funnel to perform their experiments!
Scientific Explorer My First Mind Blowing Science Kit: My First Science Kit tests several scientific principles with mind blowing experiments such as creating a sunset in a test tube and making a color-changing volcano. Children love learning fascinating facts about their natural world and this kit will keep them engrossed with interactive experiments. You don’t need a state of the art laboratory to hypothesize and test your theories; everything you need comes in this expansive kit. Your child will learn using the scientific process of deduction and experimentation. Product Information Step-by-step instructions for all 11 experiments, the detailed science guide included with this kit provides adults with mind blowing science secrets that help to answer questions about what’s happening in each experiment.
Sequence for Kids: Even if they can’t read yet, younger children can enjoy playing this great strategy-building game. The Sequence Game for Kids is easy to play yet challenging and exciting. Just play a card from your hand, place a chip on a corresponding game board space and when you have 4 in a row, it’s a “sequence” and you win. But there’s more. Use a unicorn card to place your chip anywhere or a dragon card to remove your opponent’s chip.
K’NEX Education – Kid Group Set, 131 pcs: Big, soft, chunky pieces can be used by children with varying manipulative skills. Build 8 models from 1:1 correspondence cards or create your own creatures using the 131 parts, including 10 eyes and 2 ears/wings. Great starter kit for the preschool classroom. Packaged in a large storage tub with snap-on lid.
ALEX Toys Little Hands Paper Tube Ocean: Collage 4 silly sea creatures with paper tubes, ric-rac, pipe cleaners, doilies and more! Make a goldfish, seahorse, lobster and jellyfish. Includes 4 paper tubes, tons of stickers and paper shapes, pipe cleaners, fringed paper, tissue paper squares, glue stick and easy picture instructions.
MiP Robot (Black): MiP has an inquisitive and responsive personality communicated through motion, sounds, and RGB LED eyes. With his unique dual wheel balancing, MiP is able to navigate his surroundings, follow hand gestures, and even follow objects around. Unique dual-wheel balancing with fast speeds and on the dime turning. Hand gesture command recognition. Comes with a tray accessory that can be plugged in. Watch MiP balance multiple objects while moving or standing still! Multiple robotic modes including Roam, Stacking, Dance, and Programming.
STEM Activities: 8-11 Years
Snap Circuits Jr. SC-100 Electronics Discovery Kit: Give your child an exciting, hands-on introduction to electronics with Elenco Electronics Snap Circuits Jr. SC-100. This innovative kit contains over 30 color-coded, real circuit components that snap together to create working electronic circuits and devices. Recommended for children 8 and older, this set offers 101 do-it-yourself projects that will give your child an entertaining, concrete education on how electronics work.
Brain Quest Smart Game: Kids race to answer questions in the Brain Quest Smart Game from University Games. Kids draw a card, then answer a question at their own grade level. The winner is the first to spell SMART by answering a question correctly in each category: Science, Math, Arts, Reading and The World. The set includes 1 game board, a packet of clear round discs, 1 spinner, 4 cardboard SMART pop-outs, 4 packets of cello-wrapped cards. Questions appropriate for grades 1 – 6 are included on each card, so children of different ages and abilities can enjoy playing together.
LEGO Mindstorms EV3 31313: Unleash the creative powers of LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3! Build TRACK3R, R3PTAR, SPIK3R, EV3RSTORM and GRIPP3R faster than ever before with the amazing free EV3 Programmer App on your tablet. Then use the intuitive drag-and-drop interface to program your favorite robots to walk, talk, think and do anything you can imagine. When you’re ready for more, fire up the advanced programming features of the EV3 Software on your PC and Mac, or take instant control with the free Robot Commander app on your smart device or infrared remote control included with each set.
littleBits Electronics Synth Kit: The littleBits synth kit is an incredibly powerful, easy to use modular synthesizer that helps you unleash your inner rockstar. The Synth Kit, developed in partnership with KORGx, a pioneer of electronic musical equipment, enables amateur and professional musicians to easily explore the iconic synthesizer instrument. This allows you to make exciting new sounds and build your own infinitely customizable and expandable analog modular instrument – all with little to no engineering or musical knowledge. The Synth Kit includes an assortment of 12 electronic Bits that instantly snap together with magnets to create circuits like those used in Korg’s famous analog synthesizers.
K’NEX Education – Intro To Simple Machines: Levers and Pulleys: Hands-on learning at it best! The K’NEX® Education Intro to Simple Machines: Levers & Pulleys set is designed to introduce students to the scientific concepts associated with two types of Simple Machines – levers and pulleys. Students are provided with the opportunity to acquire skills using a hands-on, inquiry-based approach to information and concepts. Working cooperatively, students are encouraged to interact with each other as they build, investigate, discuss, and evaluate scientific principles in action. The Teacher’s Guide provides the information and resources needed to build students’ understanding of scientific concepts and channel their inquiries into active and meaningful learning experiences. Extension activities that can be used to explore the concepts more deeply are also included.
Science Wiz Cool Circuits: PUZZLE of the YEAR for 2013!! 40 challenges from tutorial to practically impossible Cool Circuits really does live up to its name. COOL! Created by Harry L. Nelson and Hiroshi Yamamoto, this puzzle emphasizes spatial reasoning and abstract thinking. Lay down a puzzle card, solve the challenge by making a loop, and watch the board light up! Cool Circuits has 40 different challenges ranging from student to expert. Can you solve them all?
Zometool Basic Creator Kit: Go beyond bricks! Zometool’s Advanced Building Blocks are treasured by kids, scientists, and artists because they introduce you to the next level of 3D thinking. Endless possibilities turn into hours of building fun as you explore fascinating shapes and patterns. BASIC Creator is a simple introduction to Zometool’s user-friendly system; start your collection and add to it later with larger kits to multiply the possibilities. Fun for the whole family; everyone can build at their level. Clear and colorful step-by-step instructions will get you started while leaving you a wide universe of the type of open-ended exploration and free-play that have been proven to boost creativity.
K’NEX Education – DNA, Replications and Transcription Set: The K’NEX DNA, Replication and Transcription set is designed to aid in teaching the structure and function of the nucleic acid molecules that make up DNA (deoxyribonucleic acids) and RNA (ribonucleic acids). The Teacher’s Guide provides lessons designed to take students through three instructional modules: I. DNA Structure; II. Replication & Transcription; III. Coding, Translation, and Mutations. Excellent demonstration tool at the elementary school level.
MudWatt – Clean Energy from Mud – Grow your own living fuel cell: MudWatt engages kids in STEM in a whole new way, using the power of mud! It harnesses the electrons of bacteria naturally living in the soil beneath our feet to generate electricity! Kids experiment with different types of soil (and food from the fridge) to maximize their power output. The MudWatt Explorer App lets kids measure their power, track their MudWatt’s growth, and unlock an awesome comic book!
Snap Circuits SC-300 Electronics Discovery Kit: Snap Circuits makes learning electronics easy and fun. Just follow the colorful pictures in our manual and build exciting projects such as AM radios; burglar alarms; doorbells and much more. You can even play electronic games with your friends. All parts are mounted on plastic modules and snap together with ease. Enjoy hours of educational fun while learning about electronics. No tools required. Includes Projects 1-305 manuals.
littleBits Electronics Premium Kit: Empower your kids to get creative and invent anything with the Premium Kit. Heftier than the Base Kit, it unlocks more powerful interactions with 14 Bits including the servo and vibration motors, and is perfect for anyone who wants a deeper intro into inventing with littleBits. Your kids [and you!] can learn the basics of electronics, explore STEAM/STEM principles, form the foundations of critical thinking, or just have fun with whirring, buzzing creations. The Premium Kit also comes with a project booklet that provides easy-to-follow instructions for 10 amazing inventions (and hundreds more online!) including the Playful Pet and an interactive Piggy Bank.
Thames and Kosmos Classic Science Archaeology: Pyramid: Play the role of archaeologist as you explore this pyramid model and the treasures buried within. After using hieroglyphics to decipher the secret to unlocking the pyramid, use tools and techniques similar to those of a real archaeologist to carefully excavate a sarcophagus, death mask, and four canopic urns from inside. Open the sarcophagus and you will discover a model mummy preserved within. As you uncover the artifacts in the pyramid, you will learn about archaeological science, including excavation, conservation, dating, and remote sensing. You will also learn about ancient Egyptian customs, hieroglyphics, mummification, and pyramid construction. Investigate the layout of the pyramid, its various chambers, hidden passageways, and security devices by constructing a three-dimensional cross section.
K’NEX Education – Intro to Structures: Bridges: No more toothpicks and glue! The K’NEX Education Intro to Structures: Bridges set is designed to introduce students to the history, function, structural design, geometry and strength of bridges while providing opportunities for them to acquire skills using a hands-on, inquiry-based approach to information and concepts. The Teacher’s Guide provides the information and resources required to build your students’ understanding of scientific, technical and design concepts and to channel their inquiries into active and meaningful learning experiences.
For more STEM activities: