What Makes a Toy a STEM/STEAM Toy?


Recording Access:

Watch the panel recording

Presented on:

February 17, 2019


A STEM/STEAM toy is more than just a label on a box. Does the toy get kids excited about science, technology, engineering, and math and does it fuel a child's imagination, curiosity, and creativity? Does the toy support the skills needed in these areas?

The Toy Association STEM/STEAM Strategic Leadership Committee hosted an interactive panel discussion at Toy Fair New York – “What Makes a Toy a STEM/STEAM Toy?” This panel provided insights to learn how to create and promote a product as STEM/STEAM.

Who Should Watch:

Both toy manufacturers and retailers will benefit from this session, which will feature experts from a cross-section of fields including toys, play, education, and STEAM. The panel discussion will focus on how to create and promote a toy as STEM/STEAM.


Courtney Schley, Research Editor, Wirecutter

Expert Panelists:

  • Ayah Bdeir, CEO and Founder, littleBits
  • Andres Garza, Senior Design Manger, Spin Master
  • Netta Rabin, Vice President, Product Development, Klutz
  • Tom Runtz, Director of Product Development, Learning Resources
  • James P. Seymour, Ph.D., Vice President & CTO, E-Blox


Additional resources on STEM/STEAM

In an effort to provide information and clarity to its members, The Toy Association STEM/STEAM Strategic Leadership Committee released a report entitled “Decoding STEM/STEAM.” There is an accompanying webinar that is free to members, "Decoding STEM/STEAM: An Overview of STEM & STEAM and the Role Toys Play in Teaching the Concepts to Children" that focused on the key findings of the report, as well as individual insights from this stellar committee of STEAM professionals.