Top STEAM Toys to Teach Your Kids to Code

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It’s 2018 and STEM is out—STEAM is rapidly taking over! Instead of all science and math, STEAM adds the arts into the educational approach, teaching kids to take creative and collaborative approaches to problem-solving. #RealityMoms checks out the toy scene every year—and these STEAM toys will teach your kids to take a creative approach to learning to code!

The Kano Harry Potter Wand Building Kit comes with wand parts, PCB with codeable LED, button, batteries, step-by-step book, stickers, poster, and free Kano app. Your child will build a wand that responds to their movements with 70+ step-by-step creative coding challenges. A wave of the wand will show instant effects on screen, including spells that make feathers fly, goblets multiply, fire flow, pumpkins grow, and more.

Anki Cozmo Toy Robot – perfect for the younger children, Cozmo has a beginner-friendly interface and has been tested for durability and security. Cozmo has his own personality and his AI allows for “real” emotions. Anki’s code lab has simple drag and drop code blocks that allow your child to learn simple coding and teach Cozmo to interact with his environment.

Sphero BOLT – is the latest tech from Sphero (last year we reviewed the BB8). The BOLT is an app-enabled robot powered by the Sphero Edu app (available on nearly any mobile or desktop device). The coding functions allow flexibility as you can code BOLT by drawing, using Scratch blocks, or writing JavaScript. Programmable sensors include infrared, compass, light sensor, gyroscope, and accelerometer. It’s durable, waterproof and has a 2+ hour battery life.

Osmo Coding Jam – used with your Osmo base and your iPhone or iPad, your child will learn to place tangible blocks into patterns and sequences (coding), to enter exciting way-out worlds, where characters can be controlled, along with music they perform, to rock the house. Your child will create and layer melodies, drum beats, and more while building original compositions with fun characters from different worlds.This toy is a great introduction to the concepts of coding, specifically developed kids ages 5 to 12.

For more great gift ideas, check out the RealityMoms Hot Holiday Gift Guide!

Lola Marguerita (Editor in Chief)

Lola the Editor in Chief at RealityMoms and looks after our stable of fantastic writers and contributors. Lola is rocking forty-plus-year-old working mother who remarried after a terrible divorce and is co-parenting with her difficult ex. She has three amazing kids and one fur baby. Her work has been featured on ScaryMommy, HuffPost and The Mid, and she’s a contributing writer at DivorcedMoms.com. You can also check out her blog: Live By Surprise.

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