Got a budding scientist or weather geek on your holiday shopping list?
Toy Insider Mom Laurie Schacht stopped by The Weather Channel to talk about some wonderful science and weather toys that can keep kids entertained while teaching them STEM concepts. For more on the items featured in this segment, check out the product notes below, and for our complete rundown of the best gifts for the holidays, check out our complete holiday gift guide.
( KURIO WATCH 2.0 KD INTERACTIVE)
Kurio Watch 2.0 is a real working smartwatch that features interchangeable wrist bands, including color-changing bands, the ability to customize the watch screen with photos, an expanded selection of fun photo filters and frames; an included screen protector, and more.
Kurio Watch 2.0 comes loaded with games to play alone or with a friend, like Tic Tac Toe and Pirates Battle. Watches can be connected for play on two screens, or kids can play together on one device. Motion games like Snake and Ninja Roll use precise wrist movements for play.
Watch-to-watch messaging via Bluetooth makes it possible for kids to share texts, emojis, drawings, voice recordings, and photos. Friends and family can also download the Kurio Watch Messenger app on any Android device to get in on the fun. The front-facing camera is perfect for selfies, making videos, and using fun photo filters. When connected to a parent’s smartphone (Android or iOS), Kurio Watch 2.0 also becomes a hands-free way for kids to take phone calls (No additional phone plan required).
All of the features you’d expect from a smartwatch – like a calculator, calendar and reminders – are included too. Kurio Watch also has an “In Case of Emergency” (I.C.E.) app that allows parents to enter emergency medical and contact information.
Available: Best Buy, Toys “R” Us, Walmart
( BEASTS OF BALANCE SENSIBLE OBJECT)
This fun new interactive game combines your favorite aspects of JENGA and Pokemon GO.
Beasts of Balance is a true testament to kids’ stacking ability.
As you build the tower, connect each piece to the play pilth and watch the creatures come to life in the connected app through innovative AR technology.
Physical and digital gaming meet in an interactive cooperative experience.
Bringing Augmented Reality to a tabletop format.
Great for party games with friends and family.
Beautifully designed game pieces.
Available: Amazon; Specialty, Apple, CE
TKX400I DUAL-LED MICROSCOPE ( THAMES & KOSMOS)
With precision mechanics, quality optics, and bright LED lighting, this microscope is designed specifically for students. The base is made of sturdy, dense plastic and the adjustment mechanisms provide reliable and exact positioning and focusing.
Peer through the microscope lens and dive into an amazing new world. Your microscopic investigations can begin immediately with the three permanent slide preparations included. Fascinating structures, bizarre patterns and unexpected details are suddenly visible. Examine the countless living creatures in a single drop of pond water or the honeycomb-like arrangement of cells in an onion skin.
Available: Amazon, Walmart, Toys “R” Us
( DISCOVERY 3D MOTION SANDSCAPE HORIZON GROUP USA)
Kids can create their own constantly evolving sandscapes by filling the observation tank with sand and water with this 3D Motion Sandscape kit.
( HEXBUG VEX ROBOTICS BATTLEBOTS MINOTAUR/TOMBSTONE HEXBUG)
Directly from the BattleBots TV show comes Minotaur, a beastly competitor of mythical proportions. Kids can build their own version of this fearsome adversary.
Snap-together pieces teach hands-on problem-solving skills and result in a highly realistic, miniaturized version of this fan favorite robot.
Each sold separately.
Canadian MSRP: $51.99
Available: Amazon, Target, Toys “R” Us,HEXBUG.com