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If you’re searching for the best educational toys for 11-year-olds, you know what a tricky age it can be. They’re not quite teenagers, but they’re too old for a lot of children’s toys currently on the market. That’s why STEM toys are perfect for this age group! They’re cool, fun, and it’s nice to know they’re learning while they play.
Our favourite learning toy for this age is the Gravitrax Starter Set. This marble run has so many options that they’ll never get bored, and its range of trick pieces makes it a really fun choice!
Related: Best STEM Toys for 11-Year-Olds
There’s something about a marble run that’s hard to resist. Watching that little ball roll along its path is very satisfying and the Gravitrax Starter Set offers endless options to keep your child engaged. This is the starter kit, but you can buy expansion sets if you want to keep the challenge going. While most marble runs are vertical, this one is horizontal so you’ll need a bit of room to set it up (get ready to lose your dining table for a while!).
The kit comes with a range of track design options or you can experiment with your own. Once put together, the run feels pretty sturdy. We found the balls usually stayed on the track without rolling off under the furniture. There are plenty of cool little trick pieces in this kit – the cannon is definitely a favourite!
Drones have become really popular in STEM education and it’s easy to see why. But if you’re after something a bit simpler (or something that can be used indoors), you’ll love the Force1 Scoot Hand Drone. It’s like a hover ball – it uses infra-red motion sensors to sense obstacles and move out of their way. Your hands are an obstacle so you can guide its movement without a remote control. It was a little tricky to get the hang of at first, but before long you’ll be doing flips and stunts and even join in multiplayer games.
We like a toy that’s hardy, so our favourite thing about this drone is its crash-proof shell. The blades are all protected inside so you can crash land as many times as you like. The LED lights give it a real UFO vibe and we found it charged up quickly after its batteries ran low. Lots of fun!
If a STEM toy is what you’re after, you can’t go past a robot kit! The AOKESI Remote Control Robot Kit is very well done and will keep your child engaged for hours. Not only do they get to build the robot, they then use the remote control to move it around. Once it’s together, the robot does feel quite sturdy and has a good range of movement.
The robot can take quite a bit of time to assemble, but of course that’s part of the fun! The instructions were clear and simple to understand, in fact both the kit and instructions had a bit of a Lego feel. Its rechargeable batteries are convenient, although the remote control needs AAA batteries.
11-Year Old kids love virtual reality and this seemingly simple t-shirt uses the technology to teach them about anatomy. Download the free app (available for both iOS and Android devices), put on the Curiscope Virtuali-Tee and point your device at the shirt. Your child will soon be exploring everything from the bloodstream to the lungs and the small intestine.
The augmented reality videos are very cool and kids will love using the heart rate tracker. They can also click on hotspots to learn more about vital organs. The app also works in selfie mode and the shirt comes in different sizes. We really enjoyed using this and were surprised how interesting it is under our skin!
At about this age, many kids start to lose interest in art. They stop bringing you beautiful drawings to put on the fridge and move onto other interests. That’s why we love this LCD Electronic Drawing Tablet. It encourages creativity so your children can keep making masterpieces. The tablet comes with a stylus and its pressure-sensitive technology means their art strokes can be thin or wide. It’s great for drawing, but equally fun for writing or just doodling!
It doesn’t allow you to print your work, which is a shame. And if you make a mistake you can’t just erase the last mark you made – hitting delete will lose your whole creation. It does have a lock screen function which is useful though and means you won’t accidentally delete it all.
What to consider when buying a STEM toy for your 11-year-old
Your Child’s Interests
There are so many learning toys available you’re sure to find one that will suit your child’s interests. Whether they’re into building, creating or learning about the natural world, there’s a product out there to encourage them to learn more.
Their Skill Level
You want to find a toy that’s not only age-appropriate, but that will also suit their skill level. From beginners to advanced, there’s a STEM toy to challenge every ability.
A quality STEM product doesn’t need to cost the earth. There are some amazing toys available in every budget so shop around before you make a purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a STEM toy?
Any toy that encourages the development of science, technology, engineering and math skills. STEM has boomed in recent years so there are a wide range of learning toys on the market.
What makes a good STEM toy?
Like any toy it needs to be fun! A product that engages your child and holds their interest is a good STEM toy.
Will I need to help my child use their STEM toy?
It depends on the toy you choose and their skill level. They might need a bit of guidance but if you choose wisely, STEM toys can be great for independent play.
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