Monday, December 10, 2018

STEM Toys to Give for Christmas

What exactly is STEM? According to Live Science, STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in an interdisciplinary and applied approach of four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The four subjects are cohesively integrated based on real-world applications.

How important is STEM in school? Aside from the growing trend in STEM occupations, STEM enables a student to think critically, innovate, and fosters math, as well as science literacy. Engineering for Kids excellently explained the benefits of STEM education,


"STEM education helps to bridge the ethnic and gender gaps sometimes found in math and science fields. Initiatives have been established to increase the roles of women and minorities in STEM-related fields. STEM education breaks the traditional gender roles. In order to compete in a global economy, STEM education and careers must be a national priority. Each and every decision made uses an aspect of STEM to understand the implications".





How can we foster STEM education?

1. Support STEM learning by encouraging questions such as asking "Why and How". Ask your children why protecting the environment is important? How do they think their favorite app gets created?

2. Watch educational shows and programs. Shows like Discovery Channel (Planet Earth), History Channel (Modern Marvels), and PBS (Sid the Science Kid and Nova). Netflix has an amazing line up of educational documentaries too that fosters STEM.

3. Try out STEM extracurricular activities. Sometimes, local universities and libraries will offer or hosts STEM activities. Get plugged in and you will be surprised at how many activities in your area that supports STEM learning.  There are STEM programs and internship that you can enroll your kids too, check out Pathway to Science for more info.

4. Give museum membership as a GIFT. I live in Southern California and our California Science Center offers an affordable annual membership that includes entrances to many science museums nationwide.

5. Provide presents that promote STEM learning. This Christmas, I am on a mission to provide not only meaningful Christmas gifts but also gifts that encourage learning. Our kids have plenty of fun toys, it is abundant actually. I am excited to share Little Experimenter with you.

Little Experimenter enables children all over the world to express their creativity and individuality through play. To learn more about their products, read HERE.

Here are two of my favorite toys from Little Experimenter:

Illuminated World Globe
Ages 8+
Product Dimensions: 8", 20 cm in diameter



Why I love this product? It is sturdy and full of information! The globe includes deserts, capitals, regional, continental and international boundaries, built in LED and it operates on 4 AA batteries. Look how beautiful it is!


Tourist Meets Travelers wonderfully explained the importance of having a globe and teaching the globes to kids. Not only it teaches the kids about the aspects of a globe, from a child's perspective it is amazing to see the different countries and how we are separated with big bodies of water. It is really beautiful when it is lit, in fact, our girls love to use this at night when they go to school.




Night Vision Binoculars
Ages 3+
Large, comfortable, and flexible eyepiece
2x magnification
Flashlight
Neck Strap with safety clasp (DISCLAIMER: I still suggest, for kids 3-4 yrs depending on the maturity of your child, please be safe with the straps).



Its ergonomic shape makes it easy for little hands to hold, and the cups mold is large, snugly, and comfortable for their little faces.


She was really excited to use it! I told her that we can play Ispy and she can see birds that hide in the tree and that she can see amazing things in our environment. At night, she was eager to try the binoculars outside.


I told her that she can see cats that quietly walks in the back of our house, the amazing night sky, and fun it can be to explore at night. It does not only open their eyes to exploring at night but it also teaches them to focus and think. As always, encourage questions!



Visit Nesstoy's website, as they have several lines of educational toys for kids. Perfect not just for Christmas but also birthdays or just to support their love of STEM and learning. To purchase, check out their Amazon store, HERE.





Don't forget to pin and share!





References:

What is STEM Education? by Live Science.

Why is STEM Education so Important? by Engineering for Kids