Brianne Gidcumb | December 2016
A STEAM Wishlist: 5 Tools for Creative Play
As the holidays quickly approach, today I’m sharing some exciting STEAM tools to encourage creative play. These are some great creative play tools to add to your professional wishlist or for the artist in your home. I must admit, some of these are products I’d love to buy for the kids in my life, some are those I’d picture writing a grant for to include in a STEAM lab, and some I’d just like to have at home to play around with myself!
Whatever your needs, here are 5 STEAMy Creative Play Tools
I may be behind the times – I’ve seen Osmo ads before, but the more I looked into the different applications of this creative play tools, the more impressed I am with its potential to foster STEAM learning. The Osmo Creative Set brings illustrations to life and encourages creative problem-solving. The Osmo Coding Kit teaches coding skills kinesthetically with physical blocks, which then translates to the device. And we all know the artistic potential of using tangrams, which can be harnessed with the Osmo Tangram Set. This would be a great activity for a STEAM lab or for centers in the classroom, and a great at-home activity for the STEAMers in your life.
This is a tool I am very much coveting for my own personal use. The 3Doodler is a 3D pen, which allows the artist to create 3D printed works of art. There are several different products- a basic 3D pen, a “pro” version, an educational set, as well as a “starter” pen for kids. Think of the possibilities!
This next STEAM tool is a little pricey, but incredible. With Tiltbrush, you can literally paint the space around you in 3D. Of course, you need some other special tools to use it, totaling around $1,000, but with some grant writing or donations to your school, this would be the perfect addition to a STEAM lab!
The Circuit Scribe kits come with all the essentials to allow your young STEAMers to draw circuits with a conductive pen. Circuit Scribe also offers modules and a la cart items to allow you to choose exactly what you need to create your own work of art. The Mini Kit starts at $9.99, so you can easily include tools for basic circuiting in your classroom!
This final creative play tools is a bit impractical for purchase for the classroom but great for the little STEAM-ers in your life. Kiwi Crate is a monthly subscription in which you receive a new crate of materials with instructions for innovation, creativity, and tinkering. The crates are differentiated according to age group, so you can easily find materials that will appeal to your STEAMer. What a great way to encourage hands-on learning while fostering creative innovation.