Toy Association & Its Members Promote STEAM Learning Through Play at Virtual Science Festival

city-of-stem-panelOctober 22, 2020 | The Toy Association and its members discussed the many ways that play can inspire STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) learning during The City of STEM Virtual Science Festival. Bringing together a network of partners to highlight the ongoing importance of STEM, the virtual event took place October 10.

In a session titled “Learning STEAM through Play and Toys,” The Toy Association’s Ken Seiter, executive vice president of marketing communications, moderated a discussion that examined how toys can inspire curiosity, encourage hands-on exploration, and get kids excited about STEAM. Panelists from Toy Association member companies included Dr. Clement Chau, director of learning at LeapFrog/VTech; Sven Gerjets, chief technology officer at Mattel; Netta Rabin, vice president of product development at Scholastic/Klutz; and Tom Runtz, director of product development at Learning Resources. Panelists shared tips on engaging kids in STEAM activities at home, provided specific examples of using toys and play to teach children necessary STEAM skills, and helped clarify the differences between STEM and STEAM.

“Connecting with attendees at the live-streamed City of STEM Virtual Science Festival is another example of how The Toy Association and its members are continuing to effectively communicate to children and families how toys and play can be valuable tools in STEAM learning,” Seiter said. “We thank our panelists who took the time to share their insights and create a lively and informative discussion.”

Click here to learn more about The Toy Association’s latest research on play’s impact on STEM/STEAM learning and the key unifying characteristics of STEM/STEAM toys. A new detailed STEAM toy assessment framework will be released in the beginning of 2021.