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18 Best Engineering Toys for Teenagers

Header Best STEM Toys for Teenagers
Teddy Booth
Written by
Teddy Booth
Written by
Teddy Booth
Teddy is a big kid at heart and a self-confessed geek who loves all things LEGO, Nintendo and RC (drones included). His mission is to find toys that kids will treasure, so that is why he spends A LOT of time curating the perfect list of toys and games that include options for everyone without putting kids inside boxes.
James Booth
Edited by
James Booth
Edited by
James Booth
Managing Editor
James loved anything Star Wars related as a kid! These days he uses the force to make sure TheToyZone is consistently publishing articles our readers will trust and find real value in. On his off days, you'll find him in the woods searching for Ewoks.
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TheToyZone is an independent publication with no ties with companies mentioned on the site. We don’t accept free products in exchange for glowing reviews. Instead, we report our own findings to help you make an informed decision.

With such a vast, ever-changing world around them, a teenager’s thirst for knowledge and exploration knows no bounds. STEM toys can be a valuable teaching tool that nurtures curiosity for anything from science, math, and problem-solving to technology and engineering.

We’ve done our research to shortlist the best STEM toys for young science lovers, adding a layer of sentiment data analysis to ensure we are only including toys real people recommend. 

From robots powered by saltwater or sunlight to sets that teach about electricity to the massively popular Raspberry Pi for future coders, all of these STEM toys will engage and educate in equal measures.

The Top 3 Engineering Toys for Teenagers

Best Budget Option
Best for Older Kids
Preview
LEGO Chain Reactions (Klutz Science/STEM Activity Kit), 9" Length x 1.06" Width x 10" Height
Thames & Kosmos Mega Cyborg Hand STEM Experiment Kit | Build Your Own GIANT Hydraulic Amazing Gripping Capabilities Adjustable for Different Sizes Learn Pneumatic Systems
Elenco Teach Tech “Robotic Arm Wire Controlled”, Robotic Arm Kit, STEM Building Toys for Kids 12+
Recommended Age
8 years and up
7 years and up
12 years and up
Pros
The instructions are well-thought-out, featuring explanations of why the experiments work and are easy to understand
Fun and learning combined, both in the process of assembling, and after it is finished
The assembly instructions are well organized, providing clear, step-by-step explanations
Cons
The set will only work if you already have some LEGO bricks or sets; otherwise, you’ll have to purchase extra bricks
The product requires certain pieces to be screwed in, you might need a screwdriver
The pieces are fragile and may break, the size of screws does not always match the chart
Price
$18.19
$25.79
$64.95
Best Budget Option
Preview
LEGO Chain Reactions (Klutz Science/STEM Activity Kit), 9" Length x 1.06" Width x 10" Height
Recommended Age
8 years and up
Pros
The instructions are well-thought-out, featuring explanations of why the experiments work and are easy to understand
Cons
The set will only work if you already have some LEGO bricks or sets; otherwise, you’ll have to purchase extra bricks
Price
$18.19
More information
Best for Younger Kids
Preview
Thames & Kosmos Mega Cyborg Hand STEM Experiment Kit | Build Your Own GIANT Hydraulic Amazing Gripping Capabilities Adjustable for Different Sizes Learn Pneumatic Systems
Recommended Age
7 years and up
Pros
Fun and learning combined, both in the process of assembling, and after it is finished
Cons
The product requires certain pieces to be screwed in, you might need a screwdriver
Price
$25.79
More information
Best for Older Kids
Preview
Elenco Teach Tech “Robotic Arm Wire Controlled”, Robotic Arm Kit, STEM Building Toys for Kids 12+
Recommended Age
12 years and up
Pros
The assembly instructions are well organized, providing clear, step-by-step explanations
Cons
The pieces are fragile and may break, the size of screws does not always match the chart
Price
$64.95
More information

Which STEM toy is best for the future scientist in your life? Scroll down to see our top picks across a wide range of interests.

1. Best Overall: ThinkFun Gravity Maze Marble Run Brain Game

Though it is said that the laws of gravity work everywhere except in the heart and the soul, kids are sure to love this gravity game with their whole heart! 

Instead of spending hours in front of the screen, boys and girls will enjoy the combination of logic games, a marble run, and a STEM toy with up to 60 challenges to try. Families worldwide sharpen their minds with this gravity maze, and it even won the Toy of the Year Award in 2017, in the Specialty Category.

1 ThinkFun Gravity Maze Marble Run

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The award-winning game consists of a game grid, 9 towers, 1 target piece, 3 marbles, and 60 challenges from beginner to expert. And of course, the manual, which is very clear and understandable so figuring out how to play won’t seem like another riddle. 

What We Love:

❤️ The game is compact and easy to clean up
❤️ There are two extra marbles in case the first one gets lost
❤️ You can play it on your own, invite a bunch of friends or the whole family to play 
❤️ Teens tend to prefer this toy over their video games

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The pieces pop up sometimes and do not always hold together

Sale
ThinkFun Gravity Maze Marble Run Brain Game and STEM Toy for Boys and Girls Age 8 and Up: Toy of the Year Award Winner
  • Trusted by Families Worldwide - With over 50 million sold, ThinkFun is the world's leading manufacturer of brain games and mind challenging puzzles
  • Develops critical skills – Playing your way through the challenges builds spatial reasoning and planning skills, and is partly an engineering and building toy that provides a great stealth learning experience for young players
  • What you get – Gravity Maze is a combination logic game, marble run, and STEM toy that's one of the best gifts you can buy for boys and girls age 8 and up It contains 60 challenges from beginner to expert, a game grid, 9 towers, 1 target piece, and 3 marbles
  • Clear instructions – Easy to learn with a clear, high quality instruction manual You can start playing and solving right away
  • Comes with multi-level challenges - Gravity Maze comes with 60 beginner to expert challenges that become increasingly difficult as you play through them

2. Best for Older Kids: Elenco Teach Tech Robotic Arm Kit

Do you believe that robots are the future? Whatever your thoughts on the subject are, this kind of tech is clearly going to be a big part of the future (and the present for that matter). The Teach Tech Robotic Arm Kit helps kids peek into the basics of robotics. 

This STEM robot can rotate and grab objects. It has five motors to power five joints and has a wide range of motion through all pivot points. Young engineers will have fun while assembling the toy and learning how to control and move it!

2 Elenco Teach Tech Robotic Arm Kit

Recommended age: 12 years and above

You’ll require 4 D batteries but they are not included in the set. The best choice for teenagers interested in engineering and robotics.

What We Love:

❤️ The assembly instructions are well organized, providing clear, step-by-step explanations 
❤️ Great product for a young scientist interested in robotics
❤️ Fun both while assembling the toy and after it is done

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The smallest components might get lost easily and there are no spares
💔 The pieces are fragile and may break
💔The size of screws does not always match the chart

Sale
Elenco Teach Tech “Robotic Arm Wire Controlled”, Robotic Arm Kit, STEM Building Toys for Kids 12+
  • Robotic arm Wired controlled can rotate, grab objects, and even move them!
  • This stem robot has an extensive range of motion through all pivot points.
  • Five motors power five joints for optimal control, movement, and fun!
  • It is a great way to learn basic robotic technology.
  • Learn by doing. Perfect for young engineers 12+.

3. Best Budget Option: LEGO Chain Reactions

Let me give you an example of a chain reaction – your teen gets a LEGO Chain Reactions Set, then builds 10 exciting moving machines, then invents some new ways to combine them, and finally, sharpens their thinking with this award-winning STEM toy! 

It is a perfect option for you if your kid has countless unfinished LEGO sets, and you’d like to bring them to life again instead of spending a fortune on a brand-new set. 

Maybe it’s time to teach your old LEGO bricks some new tricks?

3 LEGO Chain Reactions

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The STEM toy comes with a 78-page book, 33 LEGO elements, 6 LEGO balls, 6 feet of string, 8 paper ramps, 2 paper pop-up signs, 1 paper funnel ramp, 1 paper flag, 1 paper bucket, and 1 platform.

What We Love:

❤️ The instructions are well-thought-out, featuring explanations of why the experiments work and are easy to understand
❤️ In addition to STEM, the toy contributes to fine motor skills, creativity, and imagination
❤️ Great option to use old LEGO bricks which are just lying around

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The set will only work if you already have some LEGO bricks or sets; otherwise, you’ll have to purchase extra bricks
💔 The ramps, funnel, and a few of the pieces are made from card stock. They work well but, in the long term, but won’t be as durable as the plastic pieces

Sale
LEGO Chain Reactions (Klutz Science/STEM Activity Kit), 9" Length x 1.06" Width x 10" Height
  • Nappa silver award winner
  • Design and build 10 amazing moving machines - teach your bricks new tricks
  • Comes with 80 page instructions, 33 LEGO pieces, Instructions for 10 modules, 6 plastic balls, string, paper ramps and other components
  • Includes a 80 page instructional book with Klutz Certified crystal clear instructions
  • Includes more than 30 essential LEGO elements

4. Best for Younger Teens: Thames & Kosmos Mega Cyborg Hydraulic Hand

⭐The toy is trusted and even won The Toy Association’s STEM Toy Of The Year in 2021.

Kids will be able to grab all the fun with this Cyborg Hydraulic Hand! Build it, wear it, operate it and learn about pneumatic and hydraulic systems without even noticing! 

Assemble it from 200+ components, fill the piston tubes with water and wear your giant cyborg hand like a glove. No batteries or electricity is required – just the power of science and your hands. The size is adjustable to any human hand, so grown-ups, as well as teens can join the fun. 

4 Thames Kosmos Mega Cyborg Hydraulic Hand

Recommended age: 7 years and above

The STEM set includes a 40-page, colorful instructions for model building and experimentation, which provides engaging scientific information about how pneumatic and hydraulic systems are used in industrial robots, for instance, automobile components.

What We Love:

❤️ Instructions are clear and easy to understand 
❤️ Fun and learning combined
❤️ All the pieces are well-formed and fit perfectly in their spots

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The product requires certain pieces to be screwed in, so you might need a screwdriver
💔 The water may leak from the piston tubes 

Sale
Thames & Kosmos Mega Cyborg Hand STEM Experiment Kit | Build Your Own GIANT Hydraulic Amazing Gripping Capabilities Adjustable for Different Sizes Learn Pneumatic Systems
  • Build your own awesome, wearable mechanical hand that you operate with your own fingers.
  • No motors, no batteries — just the power of air pressure, water, and your own hands!
  • Hydraulic pistons enable the mechanical fingers to open and close and grip objects with enough force to lift them. Every finger joint can be adjusted to different angles for precision movement.
  • Three configurations: right hand, left hand, and claw-like; adjustable to fit virtually any human hand.
  • Learn how pneumatic and hydraulic systems are used in industrial robots such as automobile components..2021 The Toy Association's STEAM Toy Of The Year Winner

5. AmScope 120X-1200X 52-pcs Kids Beginner Microscope

Did you know that our hands carry on average 3,200 different germs belonging to more than 150 species? 
Let your young microbiologist surprise you with fun facts like this every day with the help of this beginner microscope.

The STEM toy comes in a solid ABS case and with a 52-piece accessory kit. The microscope provides high magnification for educational applications – just rotate the turret and see the object from far or close.

5 AmScope 120X 1200X 52 pcs Kids Beginner Microscope

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The kit comes in black and white color options and is made of metal and plastic. The set includes 10 prepared slides, a lab shrimp experiment, and more. 2 AA batteries are required and are included in the set. Everything a microbiologist may need in a single kit!

What We Love:

❤️ It is easy for your teen to see and discover samples on the prepared slides
❤️ The kit is sturdy and provides many levels of magnification for different needs
❤️ You can buy extra slides and gather your own samples of stuff to see under the microscope

What We Don’t Love:

💔 Only the base is metal and the rest of it is made of plastic
💔 The items may shift and pop out of their recesses during shipping 

Sale
AmScope 120X-1200X 52-pcs Kids Beginner Microscope STEM Kit with Metal Body Microscope, Plastic Slides, LED Light and Carrying Box (M30-ABS-KT2-W),White
  • Beginner compound microscope provides high magnification for educational applications
  • Monocular viewing head with LED and mirror illumination and built-in color filter wheel. Field View: Widefield, Stage: Single-layer Stage with Clips
  • Forward-facing rotating turret provides 120x, 240x, 300x, 480x, 600x, and 1200x magnifications
  • Coaxial coarse focus has a rack-and-pinion focus mechanism on a durable and stain-resistant white metal frame
  • Comes with 52-piece accessory kit and hard-sided plastic ABS case

6. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Science Chemistry Set

Life is an experiment, so why not help your youth add some scientific experiments to their life? 

With this Mega Science Chemistry Set, your teen can learn the basics of chemistry as well as get to know how to conduct experiments in a safe way. It includes everything you may need for 45 experiments. 

They will be able to mold and erupt a volcano, or a geyser. Or maybe they’d prefer to launch a rocket with CO2? Or make some fireworks? Anything is possible with this experiment set from National Geographic.

6 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Science Chemistry Set

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The set includes what you need for 15 experiments and a guide for 30 more using your household items. The STEM toy set features instructions which are easy to follow to conduct the experiments safely.

What We Love:

❤️ The instructions go into detail about the chemical reactions, explaining why and how they happen
❤️ The set comes in a sturdy box with compartments to store everything inside. There are tiny ziplock bags for storing the powders after you open them, and labels for your creations
❤️ Everything you need to do the experiments is included in the box: bowls, cups, stir sticks, measuring spoons and beakers, powders, dyes, etc. 

What We Don’t Love:

💔 Many experiments are quite messy and require lots of cleaning 
💔 Some experiments require items from the household

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Stunning Chemistry Set - Mega Science Kit with 45 Easy Experiments- Make a Volcano and Launch a Rocket, STEM Projects for Kids Ages 8-12, Science Toys (Amazon Exclusive)
  • A SCIENCE KIT THAT INSPIRES - Your kids will have hours of fun as they explore the fizzy and bubbly reactions they create, just like a real scientist in a lab!
  • A TOTAL OF 45 EXPERIMENTS - Build and erupt a volcano, create a geyser, launch a rocket, and cause some awesome chemical reactions! Each experiment is easy to conduct and a whole lot of fun!
  • EASY-TO-FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS - The experiment guide in this kit has kid-friendly instructions with illustrations for each step, and fascinating insight into the chemical reactions.
  • HANDS-ON STEM - Kids will learn the scientific process, important fundamentals of chemistry, and how to safely conduct experiments. This science kit serves as an important stepping-stone in STEM success!
  • HIGH-QUALITY EDUCATIONAL TOYS - The National Geographic STEM series provides kids high-quality educational toys that are a whole lot of fun! If your experience is anything less than extraordinary, let us know so we can make it right for you.

7. Beginner Coding Kit: Code Piano

Is the teenager in your life obsessed with music and coding? Now, girls and boys who have a knack for making music can modify the piano’s sound and bring their creativity to a whole new level! 

Let their first coding skills be gained in the playful and creative process of coming up with new tunes or reproducing their favorite ones! Designed by parents, teachers, and engineers especially for enthusiastic learners, this STEM toy won the Parents’ choice award and Family Review Center award in 2019.

7 Beginner Coding Kit Code Piano

Recommended age: 8 years and above

To start coding, you’ll need to install free software on a Mac, Windows, or Chromebook laptop or computer. The software is incompatible with tablets or smartphones. The installation takes from 5 to 20 minutes. You will need an internet connection each time you use the product.

What We Love:

❤️  Video Guides on the website make it easy to start for the young coders
❤️  The guide cards provide clear, step-by-step instructions
❤️  A great way to introduce C++ to teens and dip their toes into coding

What We Don’t Love:

💔  The piano itself is very small
💔  Suitable for beginners, but might appear boring for more experienced coders

Code Piano STEM Coding Toy for Kids 8-14+ | Learn Real Coding & Technology Skills | Includes 40+ Online Projects & Songs in Block and Typed Programming
  • 𝗠𝗨𝗦𝗜𝗖 + 𝗖𝗢𝗗𝗜𝗡𝗚 𝗦𝗧𝗘𝗠 𝗧𝗢𝗬 𝗙𝗢𝗥 𝗞𝗜𝗗𝗦: Girls and boys 8 & up learn how to make and modify their own electronic music with Code Piano. Free online project guides show them how computer programming works. Great for teens, too!
  • 𝗔𝗟𝗟 𝗜𝗡𝗖𝗟𝗨𝗦𝗜𝗩𝗘: The speaker and buttons are built into this code toy and it includes reference cards, USB cable, & carrying case. All you need is our free online software on your Windows, Mac, or Chromebook computer or laptop.
  • 𝗣𝗘𝗥𝗙𝗘𝗖𝗧 𝗙𝗢𝗥 𝗕𝗘𝗚𝗜𝗡𝗡𝗘𝗥𝗦: Projects designed by parents, teachers, and engineers for kids 8-12 who are just starting with typed code. Step-by-step guidance helps them learn STEM skills through fun hands-on activities.
  • 𝗚𝗥𝗘𝗔𝗧 𝗦𝗧𝗘𝗠 𝗚𝗜𝗙𝗧: Provides hours of fun for kids and huge learning opportunities that might inspire their career. Highly awarded by parent review organizations.
  • 𝗔𝗪𝗔𝗥𝗗 𝗪𝗜𝗡𝗡𝗜𝗡𝗚 : Code Piano for Kids has won awards from Purdue University, Parents Choice Awards, and Family Review Center.

8. Snap Circuits Teach Tech Mech 5, Mechanical Coding Robot

If the word “coding” makes you think about never ending numbers and computers, this one-of-a-kind mechanical coding robot will definitely change your perspective! It is designed to teach youngsters about mechanical engineering principles and the basics of coding without sitting in front of a screen. 

After assembling Mech-5, your young engineer can see the result of their work, as the robot can throw, lift, kick or draw. Just snap the appropriate buttons to the coding wheel and behold the wonders of robotic technology!

8 Snap Circuits Mechanical Coding Robot

Recommended age: 10 years and above

Mech-5 is made of plastic and consists of 220 components. The STEM toy is battery-powered — you will need to use 2 (AAA) Alkaline batteries. 

What We Love:

❤️ A great coding toy that does not require using a computer/iPad
❤️ Easy to assemble with easy-to-follow instructions 
❤️ The robot combines different toys and playing options in one item

What We Don’t Love:

💔 There are lots of tiny details which are easy to drop and lose
💔 Some details may crack because of the pressure applied

Sale
Snap Circuits Teach Tech Mech 5, Mechanical Coding Robot
  • Mech-5 is a one-of-a-kind Mechanical Coding Robot.
  • This mission-based, entry level robot is designed to inspire young engineers to learn about mechanical engineering principles and coding basics.
  • This stem robot can throw, lift, kick, draw, and more, All by snapping the Coding buttons onto the Coding wheel.
  • Build it. Code it. Watch it move!
  • Learn by doing. Geared toward future engineers ages 10+.

9. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Break Open 10 Premium Geodes

If every single walk outside with your teen ends up with them dragging home various stones, this set will be the best option to satisfy their geologist’s interest! 

The STEM kit allows them to crack round grayish rocks of different sizes and reveal a colorful variety of crystals! These are 100% natural, hand selected especially for young learners. The set also features safety goggles to teach kids the rules of safety and a full-color learning guide to discover more about natural beauty. 

9 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Break Open 10 Premium Geodes

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The set includes 10 natural, not man-made crystal-filled geodes, 1 pair of safety goggles, 3 display stands, and 1 full-color learning guide.

What We Love:

❤️ You only need a hammer and maybe a chisel to crack those open
❤️ The colorful guide is beautiful and full of information
❤️ Beautiful crystals can be an addition to any interior or a stone collection

What We Don’t Love:

💔 You can’t predict the color or type of crystals you get
💔 One pair of safety goggles is not enough for all the curious onlookers

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Break Open 10 Premium Geodes - Includes Goggles and Display Stands - Great STEM Science Kit, Geology Gift for Kids, Geodes Rocks Break Your Own, Toys for Boys and Girls
  • DISCOVER CRYSTAL TREASURE - Break open these rocks to reveal amazing crystals inside! Geology doesn’t get more exciting than breaking open rocks and finding crystal treasures. This great STEM activity makes an excellent gift for girls and boys!
  • COLORFUL VARIETY – Geodes can form with a wide variety of crystals inside. These geodes have been hand-selected to bring you the best variety available.
  • 100% NATURAL GEODES – These real specimens may be as big as a tennis ball, or as small as a ping-pong ball. Kids will love the thrill of cracking them open to see the natural beauty inside. This STEM activity emphasizes fun and discovery!
  • 16 PAGE FULL-COLOR LEARNING GUIDE – You’ll learn all about the fascinating science behind how geodes are formed in the detailed, full-color Learning Guide. National Geographic educational toys make science and learning fun, and are the perfect STEM gifts for boys and girls!
  • HIGH-QUALITY EDUCATIONAL TOYS - We're proud to make the highest quality hands-on science toys, and all our products are backed by exceptional service. If your experience is less than stellar, let us know and we'll make things right!

10. Sphero Mini App-Enabled Programmable Robot Ball   

Don’t be fooled by the tiny size of this robot! It’s not only a toy, it’s a complete game.

The ping pong ball-sized STEM toy is equipped with a gyroscope, accelerometer, and colorful LED lights. With the help of the free Sphero Edu app, your teen can use their imagination and creativity to code Sphero Mini. Beginners can drag and drop coding blocks and more experienced learners can write in JavaScript. 

The Sphero Play app features STEM-inspired games with the bot. Kids can try to overcome the obstacles in drive mode or use Sphero Mini as a game controller for arcade-style games in the Sphero Play app? 

10 Sphero Mini Robot Ball

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The Sphero Mini Ball comes in 8 color options: white, football-like, red, pink, orange, green, blue, and black. It is made of plastic. You will require 1 Lithium-ion battery, which is included in the package. 

What We Love:

❤️ The apps are very easy to set up on your device, just install them
❤️ No registrations or pairing with a device is needed
❤️ The compact size makes it easy to use in small spaces indoors

What We Don’t Love:

💔 Like most small RF battery powered vehicles, it will refuse to work on thick carpet. You’ll need hardwood floors or surfaces for the best performance
💔 The time given for calibration isn’t very long, so there might be some controlling issues
💔 The toy takes rather long time to charge

Sphero Mini (Red) App-Enabled Programmable Robot Ball - STEM Educational Toy for Kids Ages 8 & Up - Drive, Game & Code Play & Edu App…
  • LITTLE ROBOT, LOTTA FUN: Sphero Mini packs a ton of fun into a tiny programmable robot the size of a ping pong ball. Equipped with a gyroscope, accelerometer, and colorful LED lights, this educational robot is more than a mini robot toy. Sphero Mini is the perfect entry into robotics for beginners!
  • LEARN TO CODE: Powered by the free Sphero Edu app, you can create and customize games and code Sphero Mini by drawing on your screen, using drag and drop coding blocks, or writing JavaScript.
  • DRIVE MODE: Beginner learners can drive and play STEM-inspired games with the free Sphero Play App. Drag and drive with Joystick mode, pull back and release with Slingshot mode or tip and rotate your mobile device with Tilt mode. Included with Sphero Mini are 3 traffic cones and 6 bowling pins to inspire obstacle course fun right out of the box.
  • PLAY GAMES: Use Sphero Mini as a game controller for arcade-style games in the Sphero Play app. Perfect for playing on the go or with limited space. Choose from 3 different games - shoot through space, speed through a tunnel, or smash a polygon of bricks. With 1 hour of play time, Sphero Mini is the next big thing.
  • INSPIRING THE CREATORS OF TOMORROW: With our undeniably cool fleet of programmable robots and educational STEAM tools, we're inspiring a new generation of inventors and changemakers through hands-on applied learning of coding, science, music and the arts.

11. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Rocket Launcher  

This is definitely going to be a hit for boys and girls obsessed with space! Who doesn’t fancy launching their very own rocket? 

This Power Rocket is no ordinary one – with its powerful electric motor, it can launch up to 200 feet in the air! The motor is self-powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, providing up to 20 launches on a single charge. It couldn’t be easier – charge your rocket, place it on the included launcher, and set your launch time. 3, 2, 1, 0… LIFT OFF!

11 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Rocket Launcher

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The rocket launcher set includes a rechargeable battery and 1 lithium-ion battery. This rocket ship is constructed out of a type of styrofoam, not hard plastic. This material was undoubtedly chosen for its light weight and its durability.

What We Love:

❤️ The rocket is straightforward to set up and launch even for the youngest astronauts 
❤️ This STEM toy has three modes to choose from: low, medium, and high
❤️ The rocket returns safely to the ground with the help of a helicopter-like rotor

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The motor of the rocket is not replaceable
💔 The rocket seems rather flimsy at first glance

12. Snap Circuits “Arcade” Electronics Exploration Kit  

Durable and clear for STEM enjoyers of all ages, “snap” circuit connecting method is a great way to introduce teens to electronics. Teens can use 36 parts to complete more than 200 projects. Watch them program a fan or even light an LED display. 

The Snap Circuits have won numerous awards including: 

  • Toy Of The Year (TOTY)
  • Austria’s Best Toys For Kids
  • Parent’s Choice Recommended
  • Good Housekeeping’s Best Toy
  • National Parenting (Nappa Gold)
  • Dr. Toy (100 best children’s products and 10 best educational products)
  • Seriously STEM Award 
  • Kapi award

Get an award-winning arcade for a future academic champion!

12 Snap Circuits Arcade Electronics Exploration Kit

Recommended age: 8 years and above

You will need 3 AA batteries, and they are not included into the set. The electronics kit consists of a manual, a base grid, and all the components you need to create over 200 projects!

What We Love:

❤️ The project manual is a colorful, understandable workbook for learning about electronic components and circuits 
❤️ You can mix and match with several of these sets to expand fun and knowledge
❤️ The set comes in a box, where the components can be easily stored in future

What We Don’t Love:

💔The set contains so much plastic material, not very eco-friendly
💔The pieces are easy to lose if not stored away correctly

Sale
Snap Circuits “Arcade”, Electronics Exploration Kit, Stem Activities for Ages 8+, Full Color Project Manual (SCA-200)
  • SO MANY TOYS IN A SNAP: Make dozens of cool electronic gadgets - all from one box! A safe and fun way to introduce children ages 8+ to the basics of electrical engineering! Build exciting projects and toys using the included colorful instruction book!
  • AMAZING VALUE So many fun electric-powered projects you can make and play! Build 20+ games with fun sounds and lights! 36-piece kit also builds over 200 exciting and unique projects that come together in a snap! Watch your child write their very own spinning LED message- powered by circuits they engineered themselves!
  • GREAT GIFT Give the gift of learning and fun this holiday season! Snap Circuits kits will keep kids busy and having fun all year round. Combine with other Snap Circuits kits for even more projects!
  • NO TOOLS NEEDED: Unlike traditional electronic kits, no soldering or tools required! The number and color-coded pieces come together in a snap on the included plastic grid. Structured like a building block toy and hands-on from start to finish, Snap Circuits kits are the best way to foster a life-long love of circuitry and building in any child! Batteries required.
  • AWARD WINNING KITS! We're proud to produce high quality products loved by kids, parents,and educators. Snap Circuits kits have won a number of awards - including the Specialty Toy of the Year Award, Seriously STEM! award, Good Housekeeping's Best Toys, Purdue University's Engineering Gift Guide, National Parenting Center's Seal of Approval, Toy Insider's Top Holiday Toys, placement on the Dr. Toy list of 100 Best Children's Products and placement on the Dr. Toy list of Best Educational products, and the "Stem Approved" Trustmark from Stem.org.

13. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Glowing Marble Run 

From the starting point and down to the funnel, falling down and sliding to another tube, twist, turn, and straight to the finish line! Let the glow-in-dark marble run begin! 

As the kid sends marbles into a colorful tunnel of UV light, and observes the exciting race, they’ll learn about the physics of motion and aerodynamics without even noticing.

13 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Glowing Marble Run

Recommended age: 8 years and above

LR41 batteries are required and included into the set. 

What We Love:

❤️ In case the marbles from the set are lost, they can be replaced with ordinary glass marbles
❤️ You can expand the maze with other sets from National Geographic
❤️ The net bag which is included in the set can easily store the pieces and be used to transport them

What We Don’t Love:

💔 Some customers were disappointed because only the marbles glow in the dark and not the entire maze
💔 The whole construction may be a bit wobbly after assembled

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Glowing Marble Run – Construction Set with 15 Glow in the Dark Glass Marbles & Storage Bag, STEM Gifts for Boys and Girls, Building Project Toy (Amazon Exclusive)
  • STURDY TIGHT-FIT PIECES – This construction kit is designed to fit together snuggly so your marble maze won’t fall apart while you play. With 5 sturdy bases, 15 exciting action pieces, and 45 clear smooth-run track pieces, our kit has countless imaginative configurations.
  • GLOW IN THE DARK MARBLES – The marble run kit includes 6 different colors of glow in the dark glass marbles that shine bright as they zig-zag down the marble run. Also Includes UV light to quickly recharge the marbles.
  • CONVENIENT STORAGE – A storage bag and marble pouch make it easy to store your marble run construction pieces and glow in the dark marbles in one place. Makes a great STEM gift for boys and girls!
  • GREAT STEM TOY – The learning guide inside teaches about the physics of motion and aerodynamics. It also includes marble run construction experiments.
  • HIGH-QUALITY EDUCATIONAL TOYS - We're proud to make the highest quality hands-on science toys, and all our products are backed by exceptional service. If your experience is less than stellar, let us know and we'll make things right!

14. Gskyer 70mm Aperture 400mm Beginners Telescope 

Does the kid in your life constantly gaze up to the sky? This Gskyer Beginners Telescope is the perfect gift for young skygazers! 

Suitable for teens who dream of peeking into the world of astronomy for the first time, you can observe the stars, moon, and planets at night or picturesque landscapes during the day. It’s easily set up, and kids can use the included smartphone adapter and wireless camera remote to share memories of stargazing or nature observing sessions with their friends! 

This is a wonderful STEM present for a teenager who is keen on space or learning something new.

14 Gskyer Telescope

Recommended age: 10 years and above

Optics are 400mm(f/5.7) focal length and 70mm aperture. The telescope set includes a carry bag and aluminum alloy tripod. 

What We Love:

❤️ It is straightforward to assemble and understanding how to use it doesn’t take long
❤️ This telescope comes with a tripod that is only 4 feet high, so it will be handy for young learners
❤️ Comes with a great case to pack it all away when not used

What We Don’t Love:

💔Because of the technical limitations of the telescope, it may be hard to observe specific sky objects
💔It is mostly made of low quality plastic

Sale
Gskyer Telescope • 70mm Aperture • 400mm AZ Mount • Astronomical Refracting Telescope • for Kids Beginners • Travel Telescope • with Carry Bag • Phone Adapter and Wireless Remote
  • Quality Optics: 400mm(f/5.7) focal length and 70mm aperture, fully coated optics glass lens with high transmission coatings creates stunning images and protect your eyes. Perfect full positive telescope for astronomers to explore stars and moon.
  • Magnification: Come with two replaceable eyepieces and one 3x Barlow lens.3x Barlow lens trebles the magnifying power of each eyepiece. 5x24 finder scope with mounting bracket and cross-hair lines inside make locating objects easily.
  • Wireless Remote: Free includes one smart phone adapter and one Wireless camera remote to explore the nature of the world easily through the screen and take amazing celestial images.
  • Adjustable Tripod: This telescope allows for many different viewing positions with a adjustable aluminum alloy tripod and a carry bag, the telescope and tripod can fit inside the bag for easy traveling and storage.
  • Satisfaction: TWO-YEAR warranty. And technical support from our team of experts in 24 hours.

15. Advanced Coding: Ultimate Coding Kit  

Encourage your teen to try coding with these hands-on circuits!

Beginners can gain some new coding skills and see immediate results. They can light the LED light strip with their favorite colors, program temperature display and do over 100 creative projects in total. 

The kit features code and component reference cards with instructions and explanations. Downloading the free coding software helps kids achieve their first milestones in programming using this award-winning coding kit! 

The Ultimate Coding Kit has won the following awards: 

  • Family Choice Seal of Approval
  • Gold Award
  • Modern Library Platinum Award
  • Family Choice Award
15 Advanced Coding Ultimate Coding Kit

Recommended age: 8 years and above

This STEM set includes an LED strip with 15 pixels that can be programmed to 300 colors.

What We Love:

❤️ Is suitable both for beginners who want to evolve their interest in coding
❤️ Beginner-friendly introduction to C++ programming language
❤️ It is easy to store and keep all the details in a portable case which is included in the kit

What We Don’t Love:

💔 This set’s price is quite steep

Ultimate Coding Kit for Kids 8-12+ | Coding Game for Tweens with 100+ Free Code & STEM Projects | Girls & Boys Learn STEM Hands-On | Great Gift!
  • 𝗖𝗢𝗗𝗜𝗡𝗚 𝗙𝗢𝗥 𝗞𝗜𝗗𝗦 𝟴-𝟭𝟮+: Kids 8 and up learn real coding with 100+ projects and hands-on circuits. Designed for boys and girls with no coding experience, but who want to learn by building real electronic circuits with immediate results! Great for teens, too!
  • 𝗙𝗥𝗘𝗘 𝗢𝗡𝗟𝗜𝗡𝗘 𝗣𝗥𝗢𝗝𝗘𝗖𝗧𝗦: Why give just a software login card as a Christmas gift this year? Get a hands-on circuit board that pairs with 𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝟭𝟬𝟬 𝗳𝗿𝗲𝗲 𝗼𝗻𝗹𝗶𝗻𝗲 𝗽𝗿𝗼𝗷𝗲𝗰𝘁𝘀, guided videos, examples, and challenges that get your kids started coding. The value of immediate and tangible feedback gets kids excited about coding in ways that 100% screen-time software cannot.
  • 𝗔𝗪𝗔𝗥𝗗 𝗪𝗜𝗡𝗡𝗜𝗡𝗚: Ultimate Kit has won the Family Choice Seal of Approval, Gold Award, Modern Library Platinum Award, and Family Choice Award. Built by teachers, engineers, and designers to make kids coding fun!
  • 𝗚𝗥𝗘𝗔𝗧 𝗚𝗜𝗙𝗧: Makes a great birthday or Christmas STEM gift for a future engineer, scientist, designer, or computer programmer.  Loved by boys and girls aged 8, 9, 10,11,12,13,14,15+. Builds critical thinking and coding skills, not just more screen time.
  • 𝗖𝗛𝗔𝗟𝗟𝗘𝗡𝗚𝗜𝗡𝗚 𝗙𝗨𝗡: Real typed coding means there are no limits to what kids can code. They will be using the same coding language as NASA and major tech companies. Free software compatible with Windows, Mac, or Chromebook computers. Requires an internet connection. Not compatible with tablets or smartphones.

16. Thames & Kosmos Structural Engineering: Bridges & Skyscrapers

Have you ever wondered how giant skyscrapers stay standing? Or have the bridges that span such huge distances ever preoccupied your mind? Let the kids conduct 20 model-building experiments with their family or friends and find practical answers to these questions together! 

Every experiment explains a basic principle of structural engineering in a clear, hands-on way. They can follow the directions of an assembly guide or conduct their own building experiments. 

What is the tallest structure they can build with this kit? What pressure can it handle? Find out with this Parents’ Choice Gold Award-winning set!

16 Thames Kosmos Structural Engineering Bridges and Skyscrapers

Recommended age: 8 years and above

The kit consists of 323 building pieces and a 44-page, full-color manual. 

What We Love:

❤️ The instructions are clear and understandable, providing a guide for building as well as interesting and important information
❤️ The details are functional and flexible for imagination and experimentation
❤️ A good STEM toy for its price

What We Don’t Love:

💔 Once the structure is built, it is not easy to separate the pieces for a new project
💔 Some teens don’t find this toy engaging enough after assembling once

Sale
Thames & Kosmos Structural Engineering: Bridges & Skyscrapers | Science & Engineering Kit | Build 20 Models | Learn about Force, Load, Compression, Tension | Parents' Choice Gold Award Winner, Blue
  • Build 20 different models that each teach about force, load, compression, tension and more
  • Over 285 interchangeable building pieces
  • Includes 36-page, illustrated experiment manual and Assembly guide
  • Skill level: Intermediate

17. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Fossil Dig Kit  

Do you believe that a play set can make you feel like an archeologist? This Mega Fossil Dig Kit from National Geographic proves it’s possible! 

Dig up 15 prehistoric fossils and put a wide smile on your teen’s face, as they discover dinosaurs, shark teeth, ammonites, and more! Peek into the exciting world of paleontology while reading about your findings from the 16-page learning guide. 

The STEM set includes everything you need to keep young explorers preoccupied with digging and learning for hours – sometimes even parents can’t resist joining the process! 

17 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Fossil Dig Kit

Recommended age: 8 years and above

This young paleontologist’s kit consists of 1 large dig brick containing 15 ancient fossils, 1 full Color Learning Guide, and 1 Set of archeological digging tools (a chisel, a brush, and a magnifying glass). 

What We Love:

❤️ The excavation tools are close to the ones used in real exploration and feature convenient size 
❤️ The fossils you are about to discover are REAL, not man-made
❤️ Nicely illustrated book explains the kinds of fossils you can discover in this kit

What We Don’t Love:

💔 It gets dirty and dusty in the process of digging 
💔 The specimens themselves are kind of fragile and measure only around 2 inches

Sale
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Fossil Dig Kit - Excavate 15 Genuine Prehistoric Fossils, Kids Educational Toys, Great Science Kit Gift for Girls and Boys (Amazon Exclusive)
  • DIG UP PREHISTORIC FOSSILS – These genuine fossils are millions of years old! Dig for shark and stingray teeth, brachiopods, mosasaurs, ammonites, and more. This Mega Fossil Dig Kit is one of our top learning toys, providing hours of educational fun, and helping to inspire a lifelong love of learning!
  • EXPLORE PALEONTOLOGY – Excavate incredible, real fossils using the included tools of the trade: a chisel, brush, and magnifying glass. This kit makes an excellent STEM gift for boys and girls!
  • 16-PAGE LEARNING GUIDE - The full color, detailed Learning Guide illustrates how fossils are formed and helps young scientists identify each specimen as it’s discovered. National Geographic educational toys make science and learning fun and are the perfect STEM activity for kids!
  • A COMPLETE LEARNING ACTIVITY – This Mega Fossil Dig Kit includes everything you need to keep kids digging and learning for hours, including a dig brick packed with 15 ancient fossils, a chisel, a brush, and a magnifying glass to inspect these amazing specimens!
  • HIGH-QUALITY EDUCATIONAL TOYS - We're proud to make the highest quality hands-on science toys, and all our products are backed by exceptional service. If your experience is less than stellar, let us know and we'll make things right!

18. Squishy Circuits Group Kit

Time to take those dough creations to the next level! Mold it, then make it beep, light up, spin, and more! Endless fun for playful teens. 

The Squishy Circuits Group Kit includes everything you need to introduce a group of up to 30 enthusiastic learners to the basics of electronics. The kit has tons of example projects in the box to get started. Encourage your teen’s imagination to create even more! 

Through trial and error, young STEM enjoyers will use critical thinking, problem-solving, and gain more useful skills while having fun and enjoying what they do!

18 Squishy Circuits Group Kit

Recommended age: 8 years and above

Although the dough is not included in the kit, recipes to make homemade dough are provided, or you can purchase the dough kit as an additional item.

What We Love:

❤️ Suitable for a bunch of STEM enjoyers – classmates, friends or a family 
❤️ The case makes the set easy to carry and transport
❤️ The items of the set are reusable

What We Don’t Love:

💔 The kit does not hold up to be used a lot as the broken details are uneasy to replace
💔 Dough is what makes this set stand out from the rest, yet it isn’t included in the set as standard

Squishy Circuits Group Kit - Explore Electrical Circuits with Play Dough - STEM Science Kits for Kids Age 8-12 - Fun and Educational for Classrooms, Camps, Libraries, Museums and More!
  • STEM Learning Tool: This kit uses conductive and insulating modeling dough to teach the basics of electrical circuits in a fun, hands-on way. Bring your play dough creations to life!
  • Limitless Possibilities: Example projects are in the box, and many more are free online. A cute, colorful caterpillar, a beeping robot, or a spinning airplane. What will you create?
  • Group Set: Includes 80 LEDs and 10 each of battery holders, motors, switches, and piezo (beeping) buzzers. Every Squishy Circuit needs a battery holder so this kit accommodates 10 individuals or up to 30 working in trios.
  • Just Add Dough: Recipes to make the dough from common ingredients are free and online. Or, we suggest 2 Dough Kits per Group Kit to provide the correct amount of conductive and insulating dough.
  • Toys that are Educational: A perfect blend of play and learning. Through trial and error, critical thinking, & problem-solving, kids will be entertained and engage in engineering thought processes.

Frequently Asked Questions About STEM Toys 

🙋 Why is a STEM toy a good idea for a teenager? 

“The important thing is not to stop questioning” – Albert Einstein.

Teens are naturally curious and have a tendency to explore the world around them. However, nowadays some adolescents prefer sticking to their comfort zone, rather than taking the risk of  exploring and questioning. 

In this case, STEM toys are an exception – a tool for comfortable, fun and encouraging learning, which will definitely not take a toll on teens’ curiosity. 

🙋 Why should you consider gifting STEM toys? 

STEM toys are great tools to introduce teens  to the main concepts of science, technology, engineering, and math.

 Here is a brief list of benefits one can get from STEM toys:

  • If a child interacts with such toys from an early age, they become more confident and understand that mastering science and math is interesting, manageable, and not frightening at all.
  • They improve fine motor skills. As most STEM sets include tiny details, the playing process involves small muscles working with the brain and nervous system to control movements of fingers. 
  • They build cognitive skills. STEM-related activities provide an opportunity to master important life skills, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, logical reasoning as well as remembering facts and figures.
  • They are great for parent-child bonding. Introduce your teen to STEM while spending a few hours together. Studies show that teens whose parents regularly engage in their education, perform better academically.

So… Which STEM Toy Should I Get?

Take a closer look at teen’s interests to answer this question! 

If they are interested in computer technology and programming, consider getting a Mechanical Coding Robot, Ultimate Coding Kit, or Mini Programmable Robot Ball. If your learner likes natural sciences, pay closer attention to the Beginner Microscope, Mega Fossil Kit, or Geodes Kit

STEM toys provide an unlimited learning experience! Did we miss any interesting STEM sets? Don’t forget to let us know!

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