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The Science of Fun - Award-Winning STEM Toys

I frequently find myself in the toy section of the department store, staring at all they have to offer and feeling like there must be something better I can give my kids and their friends for their birthdays.  Don’t get me wrong.  Sock Monkeys and Hex Bugs are awesome.  I’ve even been known to pick up a transformer or two, but wouldn’t it be cool if you could give a toy that was both fun and educational?

GreatSchools, a national education non-profit that focuses on supporting parental engagement, has just released their list of 2011 Golden Apple Award: Best Learning Toys and Best in STEM Toys.  STEM refers to Science Technology Engineering and Math.  These toys are carefully reviewed and chosen to ensure parents will get the best their money can buy if they’re looking for toys that stimulate scientific thinking, while creating an enjoyable experience. 

All of the toys were produced within the last year and they range from Lego sets to digital microscopes and are broken down by age range.  They are chosen for their affordability and design and span a wide range of children’s interests.  For a look at the complete list, check out the awards page on  Happy shopping!

Kathryn Thompson is a mom to two school-aged kids, a toddler and a deceased betta fish. She can also be found at The Parenting Post, and occasionally the gym.