Looking for the coolest gifts for kids that are also educational? I have the answer. Let’s talk about what are STEM toys and why they rock!

First, let’s get a handle on what are stem toys exactly, and then we will talk about some awesome examples of STEM toys for children of all ages, and also some perfect subscriptions for kids for Christmas or any occasion. 

I’ll share some affiliate links below as well to the products I recommend that my kids think are the coolest gifts for kids. If you choose to purchase one through my life, I’ll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. A great way to support this blog for free if you enjoy the content.

What does STEM mean?

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math. The word “STEM” is an acronym for those four fields of study.

What are STEM toys?

Toys that help children learn through play in the four specific fields of study that STEM stands for. These toys help inspire children to dig deeper into understanding the nature of science, technology, engineering, and math.

Instead of sitting down and lecturing children on how pulley’s work, for example, these toys would teach them through hands-on experience how it works.

Where to buy STEM toys?

Just about anywhere! While there are many toys that are marketed at “STEM” toys, something as simple as a good set of wooden blocks spark the type of learning that you want when choosing toys for your children that will help them get a hands-on understand of STEM.

In fact, according to this article, a lot of scientists are actually imploring parents to skip many more high tech toys and instead focus on simple open-ended toys like blocks. The types of toys you might find a Montessori or Waldorf-style classroom.

Are Legos STEM toys?

YES! Besides wooden blocks or maybe Lincoln Logs, Legos are one of the most quintessential ones that promote open-ended play that allows children to get a sense of engineering, geometry, gravity, etc. Tons of basic STEM-style principles.

How much do STEM toys cost?

As much or as little as you want.

I’ve found great deals on some at my local second-hand shop, and have gotten great sets of colorful blocks for my kids on Amazon. I also loved the Amazon STEM monthly subscription box for my daughter that was totally affordable.

But even when it comes to wooden blocks, you can find some extremely high-end ones, like these Grimm’s blocks which are highly sought after by minimalist and eco-conscious moms.

Amazon STEM Toy Club Subscription

My daughter was enrolled in this subscription for around six months, and we loved it! You can choose to sign up for a new STEM inspired toy to be delivered to your door every month, two months, or three months. A lot of the toys I’ll recommend below came from this subscription. It’s only $19.99 a month, and sometimes you end up getting toys worth $30 or more!

Colorful Blocks from Melissa and Doug

I just picked these blocks up for my boys for the 2nd birthday, and they love them! (And so does my almost 5-year-old. They’re a real crowd pleaser.)

Grimm’s Blocks

Quite the splurge, these Grimm’s blocks are gorgeous and incredibly crafted. They’re an investment, but any mom I’ve known who got them said it was worth every penny.

Magnetic Tiles

My daughter loved these so much we got a second set for even bigger builds! They are so great for creating unusual and extra fun designs, and my twins are starting to get into them too.

Science Laboratory Kit

Just a couple of hours ago my daughter was pulling this out to do her “experiments.” What is so cool about this is that older kids can learn scientific concepts from the material included, or as my daughter does, just have fun playing with the equipment.

Gears Building Set from Learning Resources

I love playing with this set myself! Literally everyone I’ve seen sit down with this gear building set has loved it whether they are one-year-old or 40.

Maze O

This set lets you create your own mazes either by following the plans in the book that comes with it, or with your own imagination. It’s just the right size to then run a matchbox car through!

Automobile Engineer Kit

Build your own automobile with this kit! This one doesn’t include an engine, it’s a push car toy, but you can create tons of different designs and variations with the instruction book included. My husband and daughter had so much fun making their own car with this kit!

K’nex Demolition Truck Building Set

This kit comes with a motorized engine, and is suited for kids a little older or you can help them. It’s so cool to create your own vehicle that moves on its own! Definitely one of the coolest toys for kids out there!

What did we miss? Have a favorite STEM toy we didn’t include or did you finally learn what is a STEM toy? Let us know in the comments which other toys you think are the coolest toys for kids!

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Looking for the best STEM toys for kids? HINT: it *might* not be the ones you\'re thinking of! Let\'s talk about what STEM toys are, and then which toys might meet those qualifications and why. The right STEM toys can be the perfect gifts for kids, and awesome holiday or Christmas gifts for kids, or really any occasion! But be conscious about what you\'re buying and why. Here\'s the scoop. #kidstoys #STEM #momlife #motherhood #kidsgifts #christmasgiftsforkids #presentsforkids #educationaltoys