Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Give Gifts That are Not Just Fun, But Also Educational This Holiday Season --- The Smithsonian Stem Collection is Perfect for Kids 7+ (Review)

 Disclosure: I was provided with samples from the vendor in exchange for an honest review. All views shared are mine and mine alone.

Christmas is almost here -- well, still 39 days away, but who is counting?! :-)  I know my girls are eager for Santa's arrival, and have already dropped their letter off at the mailbox at our local post office, as they don't want it delayed in getting to the North Pole.  As my girls get older, I am finding less and less little kids toys on their lists and more gadgets and STEM kits.  They are all about hands on learning, and are seeing the value in things that are educational as well as fun. Their old toys don't offer the same excitement as say a wave machine from the Smithsonian stem collection, that my oldest daughter has been admiring on her desk in between school breaks. Not only does she find watching the wave machine relaxing, but she was so interesting in the physics of wave motion in our oceans and seas, that she did further research to learn all she could about the topic.  It was nice to see a product spark so much interest, and continue to provide hours of enjoyment watching this motorized wave machine rock back and forth and create continuous wave action. I at times have found myself lingering in her bedroom when tidying up just being mesmerized by the waves flowing back and forth. It really is fascinating to watch and soothing and relaxing at the same time.

So, as I started to think about what gifts to share in my 13th annual holiday gift guide, I knew I had to include a few favorites from the Smithsonian stem collection.  These products are perfect for tweens and teens -- who we all know are hard to shop.  My girls have gone from asking for toys to wanting top of the line tech gadgets and gift cards.  But, I am happy to see them going in and adding more Smithsonian stem collection products to this wish lists.  Not only will these products be fun to watch and play with, but they will be teaching an important STEM topic like the conservation of linear momentum as seen with the Newton's Cradle, or properties of physics when you build and play with the "perpetual" motion machine.  Oh, and I can't forget the prehistoric sea monsters aquarium, which is my youngest daughter's favorite of the Smithsonian stem collection.  This set let your child hatch and grow their own prehistoric pets, up to 20x their original size.  Kids can witness and be amazed at a 220-million year old species come to life -- aka tadpole shrimps.

Today I wanted to share more about the Smithsonian stem collection products, as I know most of you have heard about the toy shortages, delay in shipping and receiving items, and price increases, as the holiday shopping season begins.  People are shopping early in hopes to not have to deal with these headaches, and I can't blame them, as I am doing the same.  I started my shopping in Sept. and am wrapping up my shopping, so that I can sit back and enjoy quality time with family and friends this holiday season, as we all missed this quality time together last year due to Covid.  So, without further ado, here is more about my four favorites from the Smithsonian stem collection, that are worth checking out, and that would make for a great gift idea for kids ages 7+ this holiday season.

"Build your own “Perpetual” Motion Machine, powered by an invisible magnetic field. Learn why scientists, engineers and mathematicians have never been able to create such a machine, without the addition of an external energy source (like batteries). Explore different kinds of motion machines that have been proposed, and understand why they didn’t work. Learn about magnets and the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics. Requires 4 (1.5V) AA batteries (not included). Ages 8+."

Kids will have fun growing their own prehistoric pets with the Smithsonian Prehistoric Sea Monsters Kit. The kit includes: 1 Aquarium, 1 Background, 1 Bag of Triop Eggs, 1 Bag of Sand and Color Poster with Instructions.

"Swing one ball or two, and observe what happens on the other end. Based on Sir Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion, Newton’s Cradle lets you witness for yourself how for every action, there is an opposite and equal reaction. 

Perform various experiments to observe the law in action. STEM content includes biographical information on Sir Isaac Newton and explains concepts including matter, mass, momentum, inertia, force, centripetal force and Newton’s three laws of motion. Ages 8+."

"Learn about the physics of wave motion in oceans and seas as you observe a continuous wave simulation. 

A colorful poster teaches about currents, waves and tides. Learn about tsunamis, "rogue waves," and how waves play an important role in the way coastal ecosystems function. Requires 1 C (1.5V) battery (not included). Ages 14+."


You can learn more about the above mention Smithsonian stem collection products by visiting https://www.target.com/c/stem-toys/smithsonian/-/N-4ykafZ5xwuw today, or stopping by your local Target store.   

Don't delay in ordering these or other fun and education STEM products from Smithsonian, as you don't want to be disappointed when they sell out -- which I expect them to, this year.  My girls are loving each and every one of these STEM products, and can't wait to see what other STEM products from the Smithsonian stem collection Santa will be bringing them. :-)

 Disclosure: I was provided with samples from the vendor in exchange for an honest review. All views shared are mine and mine alone.

1 comment :

  1. I prefer getting my nieces educational toys, games over anything else.