Friday, December 7, 2018

STEM Christmas Gifts

Hi Friends! Since I am the STEM teacher at our school I have been getting a lot of questions from friends/family members about some STEM themed gifts they could be giving as Christmas gifts. I figured this would make for a good blog post because maybe some of you out there are interested in some STEM gifts too. I feel like I should start out by saying-- this stuff can be EXPENSIVE! I will be sure to tell you which ones I think are the most "bang for your buck". Toys that are fun, but you can really see the educational value to them too. Okay, here we go...
Osmo Genius Kit Educational Play System - (Osmo iPad Base Included) - image 1 of 10

1. Osmo. This is the priciest thing I will share, but if your budget allows for it, or you can only pick one pricier item, PICK THIS ONE! Ya'll I swear by Osmo. The kids LOVE it and don't even realize how much learning is going on. This kit is $75, but it comes with 5 games that kids of all ages love. There are games to practice math, reading/language skills/spatial awareness, problem solving skills, even a little hand-eye coordination. FYI you need an ipad in order to play.
Osmo Pizza Co. Educational Game (Osmo iPad Base required) - image 2 of 4
If you already have an Osmo kit and are looking for new games, my three favorites are Pizza Co., Coding with Awbie, and Coding Jam. In Pizza Co. the kids will run their own pizza restaurant. They will pay for the ingredients, make pizzas for their customers, handle the cash register, and have to make enough money to cover rent for their store. There is so much math involved in this game but the kids are having way too much fun to even realize how educational this it. Coding with Awbie and Coding Jam are two different games that teach simple coding skills. In my opinion, Coding Jam is more fun than Coding with Awbie. The kids get to create their own music from this so it has a fun creative aspect to it too. 
Learning Resources STEM Robot Mouse Coding Activity Set - image 1 of 8
Learning Resources Coding Robot Mouse-- Learning Resources is a company that all teachers know and love for their educational items. The kids have to build a track for the mouse to follow using the green squares/tunnel pieces/wall pieces, then they tap a code into the mouse in order to lead him to the cheese. This is a fun intro to robotics for little kids especially. 
MAGNA-TILES Clear Colors 37pc Set - image 1 of 6
Magna Tiles-- these are a great gift for any kid who loves building something "outside the box". These help kids to gain practice with 2D and 3D shapes, critical thinking, and problem solving. 
Sphero Mini Blue: The App-Controlled Robot Ball
Sphero- Sphero is a robotic ball that kids can move using an ipad/tablet/smartphone. There are a variety of apps you can download, the one we use at school is "Sphero Edu" for advanced coding, and the more "fun" app is "Sphero Play". This one has been such a hit in our STEM class that several of my students have told me they asked for one for their birthday/Christmas. I'm sure your kids will love it too!

There are many other great STEM toys out there too.. these are just the ones I am most familiar with and would recommend. If you have any questions about any STEM toys you are considering purchasing, please feel free to leave a comment below with your email and we can chat. I am happy to help!!


  1. My son loves SnapCircuits. Just thought I'd mention them for any parents of older kids.

    1. Yes, thanks for sharing! Those are a great toy for older kids!

  2. These are such great gifts for kiddos! Thanks for sharing!