The Toy Association Promotes STEAM Accredited Toys to Educators Nationwide

March 23, 2023 | The Toy Association’s Anna Yudina, senior director of marketing initiatives, led a presentation during the National Afterschool Association Convention this week on how educators can leverage play and toys to foster STEAM learning in the classroom. During the presentation, Yudina showcased the importance of incorporating STEAM toys into educational programs, highlighting several Toy Association-accredited products and the multiple play-based resources available through The Genius of Play initiative.

With total convention attendance close to 2,000, The Toy Association gained exposure for its resources with a highly targeted audience of individuals who work in afterschool programs and organizations that offer products and services to the afterschool market.

The presentation not only included a discussion of the attributes of a high-quality educational STEAM toy, but it also provided participants with the opportunity to get hands-on with toys that meet the criteria outlined in the Association’s STEAM Toy Assessment Framework. Yudina featured several Toy Association-accredited STEAM toys from member companies, including:

  • National Geographic Mega Earth Science Kit (Blue Marble)
  • Butterfly Kit (Insect Lore)
  • Examine & Treat Pet Vet Play Set (Melissa & Doug)
  • Magna-Tiles Builder 32-Piece Set (Magna-Tiles)
  • Carnival Plus Set (Magformers)
  • PicassoTiles 108pc 2-in-1 Magnetic Marble Run Set & Racing Track Set (Picasso Tiles)
  • Lock Blox (Roylco)

The Toy Association's STEAM Toy Assessment Framework ensures that toys meet specific criteria that are essential for STEAM learning, including real-world relevance and age-appropriate learning goals. The framework is a valuable resource for parents and educators who want to ensure that they are providing their children with high-quality, educational STEAM toys. The toys are tested by children and experts from The Good Play Guide™ using a scientifically proven method developed by Dr. Amanda Gummer, who has a PhD in neuropsychology and more than 20 years of experience working with kids and families.

Yudina also discussed the Association’s Genius of Play initiative, which offers a range of resources and tools for parents and educators to use when incorporating play into children's lives. This initiative provides a valuable opportunity for members to promote their products and services and raise awareness about the importance of play.