Aug 302019

STEM concept has really given a great edge to girl children. Yes, as a parent of two daughters, I am glad to work on this concept that helps girls to understand science in a practical way. In that order, I have posted several experiments for your benefit too. In this section I am going to take you through different building toys for girls. Building blocks allow kids to learn number, color, improve their fine motor skill and concentration as well.

I have collected 16 best building toys for girls across the age group. This ranges from newborn baby till they become an adult. Trust me you can find one for your girl even at their teenage and make them think creatively to construct using these building toys.  

  1. Toys – One Two Squeeze Baby Blocks

 

Manufactured by ‘B. Toys by Battat’, this set of blocks features numbers, shapes, animals, and textures. Hence it is appropriate for children of 6 months to 3 years of age, providing learning experiences to toddlers and preschoolers.

 

The set contains 10 stackable, soft blocks in a reusable bag. The blocks are even chewable as they are made of plastic that is BPA-free and phthalates-free. This is convenient as children in this age-group do tend to put everything in their mouth and have teething problems. These blocks are a learning aid for colors, numbers, names of animals and hand-eye coordination.

 

Pros

The blocks are easy to stack, the colors bright and animal designs attractive for children. Squeezing them makes sound and this feature is useful for building some muscle strength for toddlers. The material is safe for babies.

 

Cons

The range of colors could be better, having fewer shades of orange and more green. The blocks can be wiped clean but cannot be washed even though the material is washable. Water can fill up in the blocks, making them unsafe for children. The size of blocks could be too big for six-month-olds to handle.

 

Rating

1347 customers have reviewed the product, 84% giving it a five-star rating and 10% giving four stars. Overall rating is a very high 4.8.

 

  1. Uncle Goose Classic ABC Blocks

This is a product of Uncle Goose, for two-year-old children, as it is meant to engage with the English alphabet so as to learn it, numbers as well as pictures of animals with the animal name printed below the picture.This makes it an appropriate and interesting learning-aid for children of that age group. Blocks are a popular play and learning aid and this particular set have its own interesting designs and pictures to attract children.

 

The set contains four full alphabet set, numbers, and pictures of a range of animals with their names. Two sides of each block have detailed embossing, giving an experience of texture. The blocks are made of wood that is sourced responsibly and the printing is with ink that is safe for children.

 

Pros

Children can learn to spell, sequence, and stack; sort, build and match. All this is achievable with this single set of blocks, making it a convenient and interesting learning aid. The embossing is a feature not usual on blocks, hence giving a new experience of design and texture.

 

Cons

The wood is quite soft and hence prone to chipping and denting, especially if handled roughly as children are prone to do often.

 

Rating

103 customers rated this product, 87% of them giving it a full five-star rating, making the overall rating a very high 4.7 out of 5.

 

  1. Hape Fantasia Building Blocks Toddler Push and Pull Train Set

A building block set from Hape, this product is suited for children who are two years and over. Children need to be given new toys and experiences all the time to stimulate their learning and this set fulfills that need by adding train car pieces that also have rods for stacking different sets of blocks together. These blocks can develop motor skills and cognition that are more advanced as compared to just stacking blocks. Children also learn about shades of colors that may go together.

 

This is a set of 17 pieces that are made of Maple wood with bright rainbow colors and different patterns. Three of the pieces are train cars that also need to be joined together. All material used is non-toxic.

 

Pros

The train cars and rods for blocks create several possibilities for children to explore and try out. The shape of the blocks is also unique and not a cube, making it a novelty for children. The need to push the blocks through the pegs so as to stack them may be a new learning dimension for some children.

 

Cons

The blocks have holes through them which are required to stack them on the pegs. These can be a hazard as children may have their finger stock. Rough play may reduce the durability of the block.

 

Rating

Of the 48 customer reviews, 86% have given a five-star rating, the overall rating being a high 4.3 out of 5.

 

  1. K’NEX Kid Ocean Pals Building Set

This product by K’NEX is quite a toy for children in the age range of 3-5 years. It is an interesting way to familiarize them with life in the oceans, the different life forms, such as fish, sea horse and penguin, and their particular features. It can be great for a child to play with an adult, discussing the animals they create and building stories around them. Children can develop their imagination this way.

 

The set contains 65 colorful and flexible pieces and 20 ideas with step-by-step procedures on colorful sheets to get children started. The pieces are made of non-toxic material, appropriate for children. Some pieces are small and hence not recommended for younger toddlers.

 

Pros

The unique designs of pieces and their flexibility can aid in developing finer motor skills. The pieces being of different categories of shapes serve different purposes, thus developing higher-order thinking and recognition. Playing this with adults or older children can greatly support in learning about the creatures they make.

 

Cons

There is only a possibility of pieces being missing, which will lead to limiting the possibilities of creatures that may be formed.

 

Rating

27 customers have rated this, with 89% giving it five stars, making the overall rating a high 4.6 out of 5.

 

  1. LEGO – DUPLO Brick Set

This is a product by LEGO Education, for children in the age-group 3-5 years
Perfectly suiting this age-group, the pieces have bright colors, slightly rounded edges and sizes that are easy for children to stack. As children need to explore the different shapes and try different combinations of fixing them together, it is useful for developing their creativity and fine motor skills. 

The set has 160 pieces and six double-sided building cards. The cards can give initial ideas to children to get them started on their own. Online videos are available for more ideas.

Pros

Besides encouraging free-form play and self-expression, the design and concept have several other advantages. Equally suited for both genders, it also allows for group-play for up to six children, helping children to learn to interact with each other and learn from peers. Quite a ubiquitous game, it hardly has any disadvantages.

 

Cons

There is only the possibility of pieces missing.

Rating

47 customers have reviewed this product, with 96% giving it a five-star rating, making the overall rating a high 4.7 out of 5.

 

  1. Treehaus Wood Castle Blocks

 

This set is provided by Treehaus and should be appropriate for boys and girls above 3 years of age. The blocks of different shapes and designs need to be put together to build a castle and bridges, thus helping children in this age group to learn to read and follow instructions, familiarize with a range of shapes, build structures from smaller units.

 

The set has 60 or more pieces that are made of all-natural wood. These are BPA and phthalates free. The pieces are of different shapes and sizes, that can be put together to make a castle.

 

Pros

This set serves both, educational and entertainment purposes for a wide range of age-groups. It can hone qualities of patience, individual or group play, fine motor skills, cognition and inference as children are required to look at the picture of a castle and build that with the given pieces.

 

Cons

Some pieces may be too small if there are younger siblings in the house. Not all pieces have windows actually carved out from the wood, but have them only as a darker shade. This makes it less interesting.

 

Rating

101 customers reviewed this and 81% gave it a five-star rating. The overall rating comes to four stars out of five.

 

  1. Kids First Amusement Park Engineer Kit

This building set by Thames and Kosmos is designed for children 3 years and above. Since it is designed based on the STEM framework, it may be effectively used even by older children, to explore different concepts as per their age, learning level and interest.

 

Packaged in a convenient storage case, the kit consists of 97 colorful and bright pieces. It comes with an instruction manual where instructions are creatively narrated as a story, making them interesting and easy-to-understand for young children. Twenty different models may be built using the pieces. The models depict some common rides that may be found at an amusement park and assist in exploring concepts of Science.

 

Pros

It can be a great starting point to get even children as young as 3 years curious about how things work. The toy thus hones skills of observation and questioning. A little adult guidance can really help in this, allowing for parents and children to play together. The manual teaches them how to follow written instructions.

 

Cons

Since the building is required, there can be problems with how well pieces are fitting together, being too loose or too tight for young children. It has small parts, so those with even younger siblings will need to be careful.

 

Rating

48 customers have reviewed this product, with 65% giving it a five-star rating, the overall rating being an average3.7 out of 5.

 

  1. KEVA Structures 200 Plank Set

Brought to you by MindWare, this is a set of simple, wooden planks suitable for any age or gender five years and over. Based on the age, interest, and imagination of children, they can start with simple structures and then move to more complex and varied designs. With some guidance, older children may even explore concepts such as gravity, 3-D geometry, etc. This is also useful to build fine motor skills

 

The kit consists of 200 precision-cut planks made of pine wood. Also included is a 24-page colored booklet with ideas for children to get initial inspiration and start out.

 

Pros

The planks are cut quite well for easy and sturdy stacking. This allows children to explore even complex designs without being limited by the design of planks. The free-form play allows for multiple learning possibilities, individually or in a group, independently or with guidance. There are examples of these planks being used for STEM summer camps.

 

Cons

Being a somewhat modified version of building blocks, this is a ubiquitous and widely popular game, with hardly any downsides. Only problems could be with the quality of planks – they may be prone to chipping or cracking.

 

Rating

Out of the 315 people who rated this product, 86% have given it five stars, making the overall tally a very high 4.7 out of 5.

 

  1. LEGO Education Community Starter Kit

This is a product of the popular LEGO Education. Based on a specific theme and a slightly higher order of thinking, this set is quite appropriate for children from four years onwards. The elements in this set aid children in exploring different aspects of community life. Possible components and different roles that community members may have can be understood by playing with this kit. Besides this, it serves all the other purposes of all building sets, such as coordination, motor skills, and creativity.

 

This large set has 1907 pieces, with the hallmark colors and range of LEGO. The pieces are of different shapes and sizes, including some that depict specific things, such as plants, wheels or lights.

 

Pros

Being a set with many pieces, it allows for group play for up to six children, hence aiding in peer-learning. The interesting variety of pieces gives multiple possibilities to think about different aspects of a community. The theme may match with some topics of the curriculum and hence may be used for hands-on learning.

 

Cons

In some cases of purchase, there may be a possibility of missing pieces. Since there are some quite small pieces, children with younger siblings will need to be careful while playing at home.

 

Rating

There are only 11 customer reviews, with 79% giving it five stars. The overall rating is 3.9.

 

  1. Klutz Lego Chain Reactions Science & Building Kit

Brought to you by Klutz, this is a Lego product that is meant for children who are 8 years old and above. The caption ‘Teach your bricks new tricks’ says it all. It is a set of building blocks but with additional components that can transform these into ten different possible machines with moving parts. Hence, school-going children begin to understand the basic concepts of mechanics and get some hands-on experience.

 

The kit contains 33 LEGO pieces, 80 pages of detailed instructions for 10 modules, 6 plastic balls, string, paper ramps, and other components.

 

Pros

It is a creative way for children to progress from simple building blocks and start exploring how simple machines work. The theme may match with some STEM topics of the curriculum and hence may be used for hands-on learning. Besides this, it serves all the other purposes of building sets where specific things need to be created, such as coordination, motor skills, ability to independently follow instructions.

 

Cons

The material used for some of the components, such as balls and ramps, may not be durable enough to allow rough handling by children. Some pieces may not fit well together leading to the created machines not being sturdy enough. To build more things, extra pieces may be required.

 

Rating

1177 customers rated this product and 62% of them gave it a five-star rating. Overall rating is 4.1 out of 5.

 

  1. Pepper Mint in The Great Treehouse Engineering Adventure Science Experiment Kit

This award-winning product is by Thames and Kosmos, for children who are 8 years old and above. This is a STEM experimental kit. It is a character-driven set that covers lessons in physics, engineering, and electrical science. After the experiments and projects in the manual are complete, the finished treehouse becomes an independent playset. This is a creative way to get school-goers started on some science concepts. They also learn how to engage in experiments and follow instructions.

 

The kit consists of parts to build the treehouse and add the experimental components. The instruction manual is in a creative storybook format and has instructions for building the treehouse as well as for conducting the experiments.

 

Pros

It is a creative way for children to progress from games based on building blocks, to start building something specific and conduct experiments. The theme may match with some STEM topics of the curriculum and hence may be used for hands-on learning. Although the theme is specific, it still allows a lot for free-form play and creativity as any number of possibilities may be added based on interest and learning level of the child.

 

Cons

Meant for a higher cognitive level and complexity, it may require a lot of patience from children and adult help. Instruction may be difficult for children to follow in their own.

 

Rating

There is 40 customer review, 53% of them being five stars and 28% four-star. Overall rating is 4.1 out of 5.

 

  1. Electronic Music Inventor Kit

This is a product of ‘littleBits’. It may be suited for children who are 8 years and above, both boys and girls, especially those who show some inclination towards music. Based on the STEAM concept, it guides children to build, customize, and play an electric synth guitar, while getting accustomed to some of the concepts involved. It is an App-based product. It is a good method to explore this potential in oneself and work on it during holidays, without having to enroll in music classes or buying music instruments.

 

The kit includes 9V battery, tech sensors, keyboard, oscillator, paper templates, stickers, and free inventor app. The app includes play instructions that are in a video form.

 

Pros

Since the instructions are video-based, they are comparatively easy to understand and little adult help may be required. The kit is designed in such a way that it opens up opportunities for children to get familiarizes with other musical instruments as well and even develop their own, once they understand the basics.

Cons

Smart device required for video instructions, either iPhone (iOS 10.0 or later) or Android (5.0 or later). There may sometimes be technical issues with the app. The cardboard material of the guitar may seem inappropriate, given the cost of the kit.

 

Rating

44 customers have reviewed the product with 61% giving it a five-star rating, overall rating being 3.8.

 

  1. LEGO DC Super Hero Girls Eclipso Dark Palace

A product of LEGO, the company recommends it for children 9-12 years of age. It suits this slightly older age-group as these children are more likely to be familiar with the comic heroes the game depicts. Though suitable for both boys and girls, it may be especially attractive to girls because of the girl superheroes used and accessories included. Taking inspiration from the given characters and spaces provided, the players can use their imagination to build new stories around them, thus spending holidays creatively.

 

The kit includes a foldout palace, opening tubes to hold LEGO DC Super Hero Girls characters, powering station, planning room, vanity cabinet, weapons cabinet, a Kryptomite creation section. There are three mini-doll figures: Wonder Woman, Eclipso and The Flash, plus 3 orange Kryptomite figures. Accessory elements include a staff, sword, flail, Wonder Woman’s Lasso of Truth, Wonder Woman’s shield, laboratory bottles, lipstick, brush, perfume bottles, pickaxe, hammer, anvil, and crystals.

 

Pros

It is a good way for children to spend long hours during the holidays. Working on stories, girls may play in pairs or small groups, thus learning group-play, exchanging ideas for stories.

 

Cons

Since the theme is very specific, some children may not have the inclination towards it and hence not finding it interesting enough.

 

Rating

24 people have rated this kit and 84% have given it a five-star rating. Overall rating is 4.4 out of 5.

 

  1. LEGO Harry Potter Hogwarts Great Hall

A product of LEGO, the creators recommend the kit for children 9 years and over, both boys and girls, especially those children who are familiar with the Harry Potter series. This is also the reason for the recommended age, as these older children are likely to have read the books or watched the movies. The kit consists of parts depicting Hogwarts and several characters of the series. It is a great stimulus for children to use their imagination and build new stories around the characters, thus spending vacation time, playing together with friends.

 

The kit includes 878 LEGO bricks and features 10 fantasy figures: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Draco Malfoy, Susan Bones, Professor McGonagall, Hagrid, Albus Dumbledore, and Nearly Headless Nick and Professor Quirrell. It even includes house banners, movable spiral staircase, potions room, treasure room, and magic items.

 

Pros

It is a good way for children to spend long hours during the holidays. Working on stories, children may play in pairs or small groups, thus learning group-play, exchanging ideas for stories. The accessories included making the kit even more interesting.

 

Cons

Since the theme is very specific, some children may not have the inclination towards it and hence not finding it interesting enough. This may be a case when giving it as a gift.

 

Rating

348 customers have reviewed the product and 89% have given it a five-star rating. Overall the product has a very high rating of 4.8.

 

  1. ROBOTIME 3D Puzzle Music Box

This is a product of ROBOTIME. It is best suited for children 10-12 years of age as it is a do-it-yourself kit, requiring assembly of parts that lead to the creation of a robot-structured hand-cranked music box. Children learn how to understand given instructions and join pieces accordingly. Those with curiosity and questioning mindset may use it to understand some basics of electronics.

 

The kit consists of laser-cut wooden pieces. It has a whopping 221 pieces and also some electronic parts.

 

Pros

The pieces fit together quite well, making the finished product sturdy and durable. As the suggested age-group is slightly older, these and even some younger children are able to assemble the robot easily. The finished product is a robot, it catches the attention of most kids.

 

Cons

The required batteries may not be included in the kit. Depending on the kit received, some customers had the opposing experience to those who liked the product, thus they had problems with the very things that were stated as advantages by others. They said the pieces were missing or did not fit well together.

 

Rating

246 customers reviewed the product, 70% giving it five stars and 20% giving four stars. The overall rating is a high 4.5 out of 5.

 

  1. LEGO Architecture London Skyline Collection

This product of LEGO is a building set appropriate for children above 16 years of age. The pieces and design being intricate, it is more suited for older age-group to face the challenge and enjoy the kit. North American children may especially relate to it and use it as a stimulus to explore its architecture or history. In this regard, it may be a good gifting item. Once the product is assembled, it can be used as a symbolic show-piece of the Statue of Liberty.

 

The building kit consists of 1685 pieces and a user guide.

Besides the Statue of Liberty kit, this range has kits for several other well-known structures. These could be bought together to create a set of self-built show-pieces.

 

Pros

This set serves both, educational and entertainment purposes for a wide range of age-groups. It can hone qualities of patience, individual or group play, fine motor skills, cognition and inference as children are required to look at the picture and build that with the given pieces. It brings with all the advantages of a building toy, as well as the possibility of exploring its history, architecture, travel, related places, etc.

 

Cons

Being a building toy, it is mostly liked and hence popular. Meant for a specific end-design, it does not allow for much free-play; however, serves its own purposes. One disadvantage could be the possibility of missing pieces.

 

Rating

1450 customers reviewed the product with 85% giving it a five-star rating. The overall rating is a very high 4.7 out of 5.

 

Finally, I have made a great attempt and feel successful. However, would want all of you to contribute to this list and add more based on your experience. Let all of us together empower our girl children.

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