On January 25, 2017 the Amazon STEM Club was unveiled. STEM toys, which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, are the current “must have” toys.
With technological advances being made every day, it’s no wonder that parents want their kids to be interested and successful in areas such as science, technology, engineering and math. These skills will be critical to future generations as this is where most jobs/careers will be.
All that being said, it is important to keep in mind that children need many “building blocks” first in order to be successful later on. And these building blocks can be nurtured and developed through good old fashioned play with traditional toys.
Now, let’s take a look at the Amazon STEM Club and what it has to offer.
Amazon STEM Club Review: What You Need To Know
This is a subscription club currently only available in the United States. The membership costs $19.99 a month. One toy will be shipped each month. The toys that are shipped are chosen by Amazon staff.
Currently there are 3 age ranges to choose from. They are 3-4 year olds, 5-7 year olds, 8-13 year olds.
Cancelling Your Membership
You can cancel your membership at any time. There is no minimum amount of time that you need to subscribe for. So you can check it out for a month or 2 and if you decide it’s not worth it, then go ahead and cancel your account.
Now I want to go over some Pros and Cons of the STEM Club membership.
♥ Makes a great gift idea!
♥ Membership can be cancelled at any time.
♥ Toys focus on STEM which many believe all kids should be exposed to these days.
♥ You can see what the toy is before it ships
♥ Able to subscribe with Amazon Credit Card with 5% rewards
♥ Toys will range in price, some being less than $20 while others are more than $20
♦ Only one subscription per age range per account. So this means if you have more than one child in a given age range you would need to create another account.
♦ Only available in the US
♦ Some toys you get may be in the upper age range. For example, one review stated their child’s age range is in the lower end of the 5-7 group and the toy was labeled as 7+
♦ UPDATE MARCH 2017: Many of the reviewers are saying that the toys they are receiving are either not age appropriate or cheaply made and not worth the $19.99 monthly fee. Even though some of the toys are listed on Amazon at $25 or more. You can read some of these reviews here. If this is making you second guess the Amazon STEM Club, perhaps you would be better off choosing your own toys based on STEM features. If your child is 3 or younger, these are toys that I highly recommend (from a speech-language and general development perspective)!
Do Kids Really Need STEM Toys?
I will start out by saying that this is my opinion and I know others will disagree. However, I do not feel that children need STEM toys in order to be successful as adults. As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, children need to learn many preliminary skills for future success. These skills can all be obtained through play with traditional toys, peers and parents/caregivers.
Some of these skills include problem solving, social skills, critical thinking, cause and effect, vocabulary development, etc.
A child who does not have access to STEM toys can and will still learn these crucial skills.
However, what STEM toys can do is inspire an interest in STEM fields. However, there is no evidence behind this for young children.
Personally I wouldn’t bother with STEM toys for children under the age of 5 or 6.
But, for $19.99 a month, I think that it’s worth a try for children ages 5 and up.
What do you think of the Amazon STEM Club Membership? Will you give it a try?