Every parent just wants the best for their child. Most parents will hope for their child to grow up to be a doctor, or the next big innovator in the field of science or technology, or even win a Nobel prize.
Studies have shown that STEM subjects, or science, technology, engineering and mathematics are some of the most sought after skills in the United States.
However, there is still a substantial gap in the number of women working in roles in science and technology. Men continue to dominate the fields of science, and STEM workplaces are seriously male-orientated.
Since 1990, studies show that employment in STEM fields has grown from 9.7 million to a massive 17.3 million. In addition, it is shown that STEM occupations earn up to 26% on average. These areas are all highly skilled and competitive.
If you have a little girl, then you know how intelligent, curious and knowledgeable she can be. Why limit her to the restrictions of her gender, when she could go on and achieve great things in the world of science and technology?
Trying to get a foot on the career ladder is a difficult task, with education becoming more accessible, more and more people are qualified, but there are less and less jobs available.
With this in mind, some parents may desire to help aid their child’s development, in the hope that they will thrive on their studies and become experts in the fields of science, technology, engineering or mathematics.
Children are naturally curious little creatures. They are also capable of undertaking complex communication and thinking skills even before they can speak properly.
Children can also show interest in STEM subjects in their everyday lives.
They analyse situations, they learn right from wrong, what works and what does not. They also understand that they can question things and remain curious about the world around them.
It is the parent’s responsibility to feed that curiosity and let their imaginations, interests and understanding grow.
Using STEM toys can help aid a child’s mental development and prepare them for education in a positive way.
Many studies show that early education in subjects such as math or science will help greatly in their studies in the future.
By implementing STEM toys or games to your daughter, you are helping her knowledge and understanding grow, and giving her the opportunity to seek an interest in STEM subjects that will help her greatly in later life.
OUR TOP PICK
If your child shows a curiosity in the fundamentals of science and technology, then they may benefit from the Yellow Scope Foundation Chemistry Kit.
This kit comes with a 32 page notebook that can teach a multitude of scientific concepts such as heat, molecules and chemical reactions.
This is an award winning STEM toy that has won the Best Educational Toys Award and was a finalist for the Toy of the Year.
With 19 different experiments, this detailed lab kit includes 19 colorful and interactive experiments, with fun facts, quizzes and room to doodle and create their own experiments themselves.
This engaging and creative kit includes 3 beakers, a high temperature thermometer, a digital timer, safety goggles, a chalkboard, and lots of chemical reagents for hours of scientific fun.
This chemistry kit will get your girls interested, excited and confident in the world of science.
- 19 experiments.
- Comes with detailed instructions.
- Includes colorful interactive notebook.
- Won Best Educational Toy Award.
- Can be bought in other styles such as DNA kit or Chromatography Kit.
- Beakers, goggles, chemical reagents, thermometer and chalkboard included.
- High quality materials.
- Only for 8-12 year olds.
To help your girls build their knowledge around engineering and building concepts, these STEM motorized building blocks are a great place to start.
These are the perfect STEM building blocks for your young builder.
With 109 parts and step-by-step instructional booklets, your child can build 5 unique electric models.
With a battery-powered electric motor, your daughter’s models can move around and attract your child’s attention and interest.
Unleash their inner imagination and creativity with this impressive STEM game.
The bright colors can help your child make creative shapes, trucks, cars, helicopters and robots.
This can improve their hand eye coordination, and manipulative skills to create models.
These building blocks can even help your child build confidence and social skills, and learn valuable lessons in teamwork and problem solving.
This kit will keep them busy for hours on end and is the perfect gift for a STEM interested girl.
This product is even non-toxic, extra durable and made of ABS and rubber materials that are BPA free.
You can even wash these blocks with ease and speed.
- Can be used from 6 years upwards- different models for different ages.
- Can help build social and teamwork skills.
- Durable and soft non toxic product.
- Promotes child’s imagination and creativity.
- Build different shapes, cars, robots that can be motorized.
- 109 different parts.
- Step by step instructional booklet.
- Keeps your children focused and attentive to the goal.
- Can only build one toy at a time.
For your young girls to create an interest in scientific methods, try showing them the Crystal Growing Science Experiment Kit.
This is a great way of exploring how science works and can create reactions in different ways.
The crystal growing kit can stimulate interest in chemistry, science and geology, and help children understand that different matter has different reactions when put through a scientific process and method.
Your little girl will love playing with this kit as it provides 7 different crystals in the end product.
Each crystal comes in a different color, and its own display case to admire her work.
This kit will educate your child on scientific principles, and give them a great result that they can admire and be proud of, knowing that it is something that they have created themselves.
- Comes with display case to view results.
- Educational toy.
- Complete instructions for ease of use.
- Creates interest in science and geology.
- Kit includes 7 different crystal experiments.
- Only suitable for ages 10 and up.
If you are looking for the perfect starter toy to get your girl interested in STEM subjects, then the FunzBo Flower Garden is great for you.
This beautiful and interesting game can help to develop creativity and imagination in preschoolers.
With amazing vibrant colors, your child can enjoy the attractive colors and shapes and help stimulate recognition of different colors in their visual education.
The interchangeable pieces can help your girls make hundreds of different flower arrangements, and learn to water and help them grow.
This toy also helps children practice hand eye coordination, and their building techniques to create a pretty flower garden that they can enjoy looking at.
This 46 piece kit offers ten different colors and shapes to learn about, that comes in a beautiful box to keep them safe.
- 46 piece kit.
- Helps engage imagination and creativity.
- Promotes recognition of colors and shapes.
- Interchangeable pieces to increase building skills.
- Vibrant colors to create interest.
- Suitable for girls aged 3-8.
- Choking hazard to children under 3.
- Only intended for preschoolers.
Promoting your child’s imagination is just as important as encouraging STEM subjects.
Girls can often be interested in fairytales and princess movies, and so this product blends their love of castles and STEM together.
The Magblock Magnetic keeps your kids away from the screen.
These magnetic blocks can help build skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics as they put them all together to build a castle.
The blocks are made of non-toxic materials and ABS plastic.
The round edge design keeps your children safe and will not hurt to touch.
The varying shapes included allow your child to solve problems and be creative.
With these blocks, there are a variety of different shapes and creations that your child can come up with.
They can create shapes, cars, vehicles, animals, houses, buildings and anything else that they can imagine.
With a range of interesting colors and different block shapes to choose from, your girls will have hours of fun.
- Different colors.
- Non toxic materials.
- Made from ABS plastic.
- Magnetic building blocks.
- Round edge design.
- Can be used for children 3 years and up.
- 103 pieces included.
- Magnets do not hold well.
- Plastic is not durable or long lasting.
It is important to note that these toys are great for increasing a girl’s interest in STEM subjects, but can also be used for boys if they wish to play with them.
How to get your child interested in STEM
To get your child interested in STEM, you can keep engaging them with everyday activities that promote the learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Keep their brains interacting with things like exploring the outdoors, going to museums, reading books, building legos, buying food and calculating totals.
These are all simple day to day tasks that can keep your child developing their skills.
Your child may also benefit from interacting with animals. You should take them to the zoo, aquarium or a petting zoo and encourage them to ask questions about biology, life, and where the animals come from.
You can also introduce fun experiments with your family and do them together. You can show how different materials interact or react and explain how this works scientifically.
You can also purchase STEM toys to help pique your child’s interest.
Children are often afraid to step out of their comfort zone, so it is your job to ensure that their interests are supported, and not feared or disapproved. Some children may be swayed towards other professions by their parents.
For example, many families still believe in sexist ideologies, and would attempt to sway girls away from entering the field of engineering, as it is not the typical norm.
This could be why only around 14% of women currently work in engineering, and only 26% of women work as computer scientists in the US.
A parent should support their child’s interests and help them explore new things and new ideas regardless of their gender.
You should encourage questions and new thinking, and let them ask as many questions as they want. To you, this may be irritating or frustrating. But, to the child, they are just trying to understand the world around them.
Why you should introduce girls to STEM topics
Times are changing. More and more women are entering the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics than ever before. As trends and ideologies shift, women can be whoever they want to be.
The gender roles have changed so that women are no longer expected to just be interested in the arts or staying home and bringing up children, if they do not want to.
If your daughter is showing an interest in science or maths, then encourage that interest and let her build her knowledge and explore new discoveries.
Studies have also shown that most parents will provide their sons with number-specific language, rather than their daughters.
How to find the best STEM toys and games for girls
STEM toys are intended to create interest and curiosity around the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, so they will need to do just that.
Some toys are often so complex that they will take a long time to reach the intended goal or outcome, and your child will lose focus.
You should pick a STEM toy that has small victories and quick successes so that your child will be hooked from the start, and realize that if she does one thing...it will cause another.
Children will want to succeed, and to do this the STEM toy must have an achievable goal that they can reach by implementing the processes of STEM subjects.
It is vital that you pick toys that will interest your child, although some may be more highly rated than others, it could be one that focuses highly on engineering qualities, when your child may have more of an interest in mathematics.
Look for toys that can help build confidence and knowledge in a range of disciplines.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a STEM toy?
STEM toys help to develop an interest in the subjects of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
These toys are aimed towards early education, learning, and discovery whilst engaging your child’s curiosity in STEM related topics.
These toys are designed to develop your child’s brain and help them find an interest in these industries for future career growth.
What does STEM mean?
STEM is the abbreviation for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. STEM learning focuses on encouraging children to explore these topics through engaging, fun and practical activities.
Do STEM toys work?
Research has shown that STEM toys do actually work to teach children science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
They work to encourage children to develop an interest and understanding of STEM subjects for use in later life.
Is LEGO a STEM toy?
We have all grown up playing with Lego. It is a product that has been found in many households.
You may be surprised to find that Lego is in fact a great STEM toy. Lego promotes the building of items, problem solving and recognizing patterns and how to create shapes and structures.
What age should a child play with STEM toys?
Studies have shown that a child’s developmental stage and knowledge at kindergarten will act as a precursor to their achievements in the future.
To give your child a head start and help them develop their physical, mental and STEM skills, there really is no limit as to when they can start.
Every toy or game will have an indicated age for the product. You can use this as a general guide as to whether it is suitable to your child.