It’s no secret that children are naturally curious about the world around them.
In order to succeed in today’s high-tech, competitive world, they will need the skills necessary to focus their curiosity and creativity to not only be aware of the technology that surrounds them but also how to use, manipulate, develop, and master it.
Sounds like a tall order when you gaze at your little one, right? That’s where the magic of STEM kits comes into play.
What are the best STEM kits for preschoolers? Preschoolers will benefit from STEM kits that keep their interest in a fun, age-appropriate way and focus on developing the skills they’ll need to succeed in school, particularly fine-motor skills, critical thinking, creativity, and problem solving.
We all want what’s best for our children, and providing fun, educational STEM toys that will inspire them to be the best they can be is a fantastic way to ensure that they’re off to a great start in life.
When it comes to STEM kits, some are better than others. Read through my top picks for preschoolers to find a few that your child will enjoy.
- What Are STEM Kits?
- What to Look for in Preschool STEM Kits
- Recommended STEM Kits for Preschoolers
- Kids First Automobile Engineer Kit
- Educational Insights Design and Drill Robot
- Learn & Climb BOOM Science Kit
- Kidtastic Microscope
- Take Apart Dinosaurs
- Trendy Bits Drill Set
- Learning Resources Magnet Movers
- Rainbow Toyfrog Star Flex Create
- Rainbow Toyfrog Straw Constructor
- Brickyard Building Blocks Engineering Kit
What Are STEM Kits?
STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.
For young children, STEM kits are specialized toys and project kits designed to teach one, several, or all of the STEM subjects in an interactive, fun way.
Because these learning experiences are cleverly disguised as toys, children may not be aware of how much they are actually learning.
They just know that they are having a good time.
However, with STEM kits children will be developing, nurturing, and improving critical skills that will serve them well when the time comes to start their formal education.
STEM kits focus on cultivating one or more of the following skills:
- Critical thinking.
- Fine motor.
- Problem solving and inquiry.
- Perseverance and patience.
- Design thinking.
- Logic and reasoning.
- Visual spatial.
- Observing and analyzing.
What to Look for in Preschool STEM Kits
While your preschooler may not be quite ready for a chemistry set or dissection station, there are plenty of age-appropriate STEM learning toys that are designed to not only entertain but to engage your child and kick-start a lifetime love of learning.
Toys That Hold Interest
No one knows your child’s likes and dislikes better than you do.
Focus on STEM kits that your child is sure to find interesting and will actively engage him or her for more than a few minutes.
For instance, if your child is constantly pulling out your canned goods to create towers, a STEM kit focusing on building design skills would be ideal.
Focus on Skills That Need Improving
Honestly consider your child’s strengths and weaknesses. Choose a STEM kit that will help develop skills that could use improvement, such as fine motor skills or problem solving.
Many STEM kits contain small parts that may pose a choking hazard for young children. Keep safety in mind as you make your selections.
Also, steer clear of kits that may be too advanced for your child. A frustrated child will quickly lose interest and may not want to even try the next kit you bring home.
On the other hand, if your child is already a whiz at LEGO toys, you might find that a kit labeled above his or her age range is more appropriate.
Recommended STEM Kits for Preschoolers
Now that you know how valuable STEM kits can be for your child’s future educational journey, let’s dive into the fun stuff and look at some of the best STEM kits aimed at preschoolers.
Winner of the Parent’s Choice Gold Award, this is the perfect kit for little, future engineers who are fascinated with cars.
Children can spend hours manipulating the 70 colorful building pieces into 10 different automobile designs, including a tow truck, tractor and forklift.
The Kids First Boat Engineer Kit has nearly all of the same features but focuses on boats instead.
Ideal Age: 3 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, creativity, visual spatial, construction, and reasoning.
With robots being all the rage now, this affordably priced set is sure to delight both boys and girls.
Children snap the arm pieces together, have fun screwing and rearranging the 15 plastic bolts with the included kid-friendly screwdriver, and then decorate their design with assorted stickers.
Ideal Age: 3
Focused Skills: Fine motor and construction.
This 55 piece educational lab kit enables children to perform over 65 experiments in 10 different science-related categories.
Examples of activities include a slime lab, balloon helicopter, sprout garden, and volcano.
Aside from some common household products, like dish soap and vinegar, this kit comes with everything needed, including kid-safe plastic equipment.
A full-color, kid-friendly instruction book with detailed instructions for each experiment and an educational DVD are included.
Parental guidance will be needed with little ones.
Ideal Age: 5 and up
Focused Skills: Science, inquiry, fine motor, and experimentation.
Little ones will get a kick out of seeing insects, animals, spiders, dinosaurs, and more up close with this easy-to-use, 8x magnification microscope.
This kit comes complete with two eyepieces, 12 slides, chunky knobs for adjusting views, and an LED light.
Ideal Age: 3 – 4
Focused Skills: Fine motor, observation, and analyzing.
Children have been fascinated by dinosaurs for decades, and with this kit, they can build all their favorites to their hearts’ content and take them apart to start all over.
This kit includes six colorful dinosaurs with removable and interchangeable parts, six plastic wrenches, six plastic screwdrivers, and a storage container.
Ideal Age: 3 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, logic, construction, and problem solving.
This kit includes 224 pieces in a plastic storage container with one side featuring a peg board for imaginative, freestyle, 3D designing.
The other side is used to hold sturdy plastic pictures to decorate with various buttons.
Complete with a wrench, screwdriver, working drill, three drill bits, 64 metal shapes, and an assortment of bolts, nuts, and peg buttons, the design possibilities are nearly unlimited.
As long as you don’t mind keeping up with all the small parts, this is an ideal kit that can grow with your child as skills improve.
Ideal Age: 4 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, logic, construction, visual spatial, and creativity.
Children will enjoy exploring the wonders of magnets with this educational set.
It comes with a horseshoe magnet, bar magnet, magnetized balls and discs, magnetic wand, and a stand and string accessory with magnetized discs for additional fun and learning.
The included activity guide features directions for 10 open-ended experiments, but your child will also likely enjoy discovering on his or her own by exploring your home to see what the magnets are and are not attracted to.
Ideal Age: 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, logic, inquiry, critical thinking, and problem solving.
With more than 70 flexible, grooved, pieces that interlock together easily, boredom just might become a thing of the past.
The plastic pieces come in five different shapes and six bright colors, making them a fun spin on traditional building blocks.
Ideal Age: 3 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, design, reasoning, and problem solving.
This kit is sure to inspire your child’s creativity while they learn basic building and design techniques.
Kids can let their imagination run wild as they manipulate the 300 pieces of straws and connectors to build all kinds of tunnels, forts, houses for stuffed animals, and other shapes.
The straws come in five bright colors and are flexible to allow for incorporating bends and circles into designs.
Ideal Age: 3 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, critical thinking, construction, creativity, and engineering.
This building kit is similar to the Kids First Automobile Engineer Kit but on a larger scale.
It comes with 163 colorful pieces, four wrenches, a screwdriver, and a combination wrench (all kid friendly) so multiple children can play simultaneously.
If your child enjoys freestyle building, this kit is ideal.
Ideal Age: 3 – 5
Focused Skills: Fine motor, construction, critical thinking, problem solving, and logic.