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How To Make It An Epic STEAM Summer

Our Ultimate Guide to the Top 16 STEAM Exploration Toys for a Sun-Soaked STEAM Summer of Discovery and Giggles

STEAM Summer, Nerd, Outdoor Play, STEM Learning, Play, Curiosity
Photo by Sam Haddad on Unsplash

Ah, summer – that magical time when the days beckoning us outdoors with a siren call of adventure and, let’s be honest, a healthy dose of mischief. Here at Raising Nerd, we’re all about diving headfirst into the summer with a splash of fun and a sprinkle of learning. Why? Because we believe that every leaf, bug, and backyard can be a gateway to a universe brimming with wonders! Welcome to your STEAM Summer – Raising Nerd style.

Raising Nerd’s Top 16 STEAM SUMMER Exploration Toys

So, let’s embark on an epic quest to uncover the Top 16 STEAM Summer Toys that promise a summer filled with adventures. From the tiniest scientists toddling through the grass to the savvy pre-teens ready to conquer the cosmos. So dig in! Because our curated STEAM Summer Toy list is bursting with gadgets, gizmos, and all-around marvels. All neatly sorted to catapult you through options faster than a rocket launch.

Are you ready to foster the next generation of Einsteins and Curie’s? Or perhaps guide the tiny hands of what could be the artist-engineer who’ll build the first Martian colony? These picks are more than just toys. They’re your child’s ticket to a summer brimming with the kind of joy that comes from squishing mud between fingers. Or perhaps gazing up at a star-studded sky, and asking the big, beautiful question, “Why?”

So, let’s not dilly-dally any longer—onward to our top selections, where curiosity meets play under the summer sun!

For Our Young Innovators (Ages 4-8):

STEAM Summer, Outdoor Play, STEM Learning, Bubbles
Photo by Leo Rivas on Unsplash
  1. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Scavenger Hunt for Kids Card Game ($8). Play 5 super fun seek & match games. Kids seek and match objects in the world to the words on the 40 jumbo cards! In addition to being loads of fun at home, it’s also the perfect road trip game or camping activity.
  2. Awesome Outdoor Science Experiments for Kids: 50+ STEAM Projects and Why They Work ($12). A treasure trove of outdoor adventures. More than 50 fun experiments that show kids science in action as they play outside.
  3. Game/Play Crayola 48 Count Sidewalk ($15). It’s free form, fun play that any age can enjoy. This set is not only affordable but also blends art with outdoor play.
  4. Bug Catcher Kit for Kids ($25). The Play-Act Bug Catcher boasts a unique gun-shaped design with a sci-fi flair. Perfect home for captured insects, making this combo an exciting addition to your child’s outdoor exploration play.
  5. Educational Insights GeoSafari Jr. My First Kids Telescope ($28). Discover the world and peer into outer space.
  6. Insect Lore Butterfly Pavilion: Pavilion Habitat and Two Live Cups of Caterpillars with STEM Butterfly Journal ($47). Watch caterpillars change into chrysalises and then emerge as beautiful Painted Lady Butterflies. Raise, observe, and feed your very own butterflies – then let them go!
  7. Kids Gardening Tools Outdoor Toys Set Backyard Play with Wheelbarrow ($49). Great for kids who want to “help out” in the yard. IBig enough to put all the seeds, shovels, and watering pots, gardening tools in it without making a mess.
  8. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Starter Metal Detector Kit for Kids ($50). This starter metal detector kit is the perfect tool for a treasure-hunting expedition!

For Our Aspiring Engineers (Ages 8-12):

STEAM Summer, Outdoor Play, STEM Learning, Nerd, Exploration, Kids
Photo by Holly Mandarich on Unsplash
  1. Be Amazing! Toys Survival Science Lab – Survival Kit for Kids ($23). The Be Amazing! Comes equipped with a mind-blowing solar oven, plastic funnels for your experiments, a magnet, and many more.
  2. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Mega Fossil Dig Kit ($25). These genuine fossils are millions of years old! Dig for shark and stingray teeth, brachiopods, mosasaurs, ammonites, and more. A top learning toy, providing hours of educational fun, and helping to inspire a lifelong love of learning!
  3. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Rocket Launcher ($39). Launch your rocket to 3 different heights with a simple push of a button. The innovative design includes helicopter-like rotor blades that extend and safely return your motorized rocket to the ground. This kids toy is unforgettable!
  4. Original Stationery Weather Science Kit Discovery Lab ($25). Solve the mysteries of the weather and discover weather science for kids with the weather station for kids!
  5. Thames & Kosmos Wind Power V4.0 STEM Experiment Kit ($44). Build and experiment with a real, working 3-foot tall wind turbine. Also, learn how wind is one of the most promising sources of clean, renewable energy available today.
  6. WORKPRO 125-Piece Household Tool Kit ($56). Want to start your NERD on learning about tools? This kit is the ideal starter tool set and is perfect for DIY or home repair and maintenance. Be sure to teach proper safety and usage of each tool. Happy building!
  7. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Rock Tumbler Kit ($60). Make any stone sparkle and polish everyday rocks into dazzling gemstones! This rock tumbler kit makes it fun and easy to turn rough rocks into beautifully polished gemstones. Simple to operate and a durable design.
  8. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PRO Series Metal Detector ($170). Find buried treasure! So, feel the thrill of discovery when you locate cool treasure like gold, coins, jewelry, and more. A fun outdoor gift for any treasure hunter!

Continue the Adventure Beyond Summer

But wait, let’s continue the conversation! We encourage your kids to share their STEM adventures and discoveries with us. Whether it’s a beautiful butterfly they raised or a hidden treasure they found with their metal detector, celebrate every discovery. Join the Raising Nerd community to connect with fellow curious minds.

STEAM Summer, STEM Learning, Play, Outdoor, Exploration, Nerd

Nerd On!

Of Note: Prices subject to change.


At Raising Nerd, we’re dedicated to bringing you the best of the STEM world—through content that educates, inspires, and entertains. To help support our mission and keep our platform thriving, we want to be transparent about our use of affiliate links in our articles.

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Thank you for your support and for being a part of our Nerd Herd. Together, we’re making STEM learning fun and accessible for everyone!

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