Calling all junior scientists, engineers, explorers, inventors, and the like to dive into our INCREDIBLE list of 100+ best ever STEM projects for kids. These are STEM ideas you can really do and they really work! Whether you are tackling STEM in the classroom, with small groups, or in your own home, these ideas, activities, and challenges are the perfect way to introduce how fun STEM can be. STEM that’s truly doable for young kids!
100+ BEST EVER STEM PROJECTS FOR KIDS
EXPLORE STEM ALL YEAR
You can explore STEM ideas with confidence when you dig into our list of the best ever STEM projects for kids. All of these ideas will fit nicely into your k-2 programs and lesson plans whether you are sharing activities or challenges in the classroom or at home.
Below you will also find a FREE STEM Calendar cheat sheet you can save to your desktop for quick access. We like to include as many easy to set up/clean up STEM projects for kids that we can, and we also like to keep everything relatively inexpensive.
If you have been looking to see how STEM and NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards) work together, check out our new series here.
WHAT IS STEM?
The simple answer to “What is STEM?” is to break down the acronym! STEM is really science, technology, engineering, and math. A good STEM project will intertwine two or more of these concepts to complete the project or to solve a problem in a challenge.
Almost every good science or engineering project is really a STEM activity because you have to pull from different resources to complete it! Results happen when many different factors fall into place. Technology and math are also important to work into the framework of STEM whether it’s through research or measurements.
It’s important that kids can navigate the technology and engineering portions of STEM needed for a successful future, but that’s not limited to building expensive robots or being stuck on screens for hours…
TECH AND ENGINEERING
Technology and engineering (especially technology) can be more challenging to work into the STEM equation but we are already so accustomed to science and math. But these two middle letters are also about design. Computer or digital design and physical designs all require the use of technology and engineering. You can check out some great STEM projects for kids below that incorporate this.
Our STEM design process Steps to Success sheet can help the activity flow too. All printable activities included at the bottom of this post!
WHAT ARE THE BEST STEM PROJECTS FOR KIDS
Below you will find that we have divided our top choices for the best STEM projects into the four main groups which include science, technology, engineering, and math. These activities are perfect for the k-2 range and even a bit higher depending on how you want to extend the activity or what the needs of the group or individual are.
The best part of all of these ideas is that can be easily changed up through materials and colors to fit a season or holiday. For example, a classic toothpick and candy structure building STEM project takes on a different meaning when you give it a holiday them like building a ghostly structure or building a chimney for Santa.
You can check out STEM for all the major holidays right here: These holiday theme collections include printable STEM challenge cards or calendars! Check out at least 20 different STEM ideas for each holiday!
SCIENCE STEM IDEAS
Simple science activities and experiments are some of our very first explorations! We have so many favorites to share. Also these are so easy to change up for holidays and seasons! You can use many simple household materials for these science STEM projects which makes them all budget friendly.
Homemade slime must be included because it has simply fascinating science and it’s easy to experiment with recipes. We have some extra special slimes that include additional science elements too. You can explore glowing slime, color changing slime, magnetic slime, and even try slime experiments.
Check out our simple physics activities all in one spot with easy to set up instructions and simple science information. Explore Newton’s laws of motion and more.
Show the kids another fun way to blow up a balloon using classic chemistry.
Explore the DNA of a Strawberry
Set up a Lava Lamp to explore the density of liquids and add a fun chemical reaction.
How do polar bears stay warm? Learn about and explore blubber with a hands on the experiment!
Blowing bubbles may seem like play, but there’s fascinating science involved too? Can you make bubble shapes?
Sink or float with common items from the kitchen.
Easy to do an exothermic reaction with yeast for a fun potions STEM project and activity!
What’s magnetic and what’s not is a fun way to explore around the room with a magnetic wand. Or gather a group of magnetic and non-magnetic materials and encourage the kids to make predictions before testing the materials.
TECHNOLOGY STEM IDEAS
You will find a mixture of inexpensive technology based STEM activities as well as some that use some of our favorite kits. I will link to the specific kits we have used below that you might find helpful for building your STEM projects workspace, tinker space, or maker space.
Code with LEGO for a neat introduction to coding and of course exploring tech with LEGO!
Explore the binary code and make bracelets or ornaments.
Learn all about algorithms and create your own even without a screen!
Explore space with Nasa. Feel like you are part of the Mission.
Get up close with the world with Nat Geo on Youtube for kids.
My son is fascinated with Mystery Doug and the quirky questions he answered on a range of STEM inspired topics.
Try out our favorite robot Dash. He’s perfect for kids as young as kindergarten right up to middle school. (see Amazon link below)
Build simple robots that really move with a toothbrush.
Check out how vegetables and fruits can generate electricity to power a clock.
Play with squishy circuits and play dough.
Learn all about stop motion animation and create your own movie.
Take some cool apps outside with outdoor tech and search the stars or go geocaching.
ENGINEERING STEM IDEAS
The design process is a huge part of engineering projects for kids. Make sure to print out our Steps To Success chart to assist your kids with the process. It’s a great way to get them thinking about all the steps that are included in a successful STEM project, activity, or challenge.
Make sure to note the science, tech, and math that go into these projects!
A DIY catapult is always a hit with the kiddos and we have several ways to make one!
Print out our LEGO Challenge Calendar to have on hand for quick engineering ideas.
Structures, structures, and more structures! We have a variety of structure creating materials and ideas to check out.
Be an architect for the day with this unique STEM project for kids.
Build a landmark such as the Eiffel Tower and build it out of materials you have around. Have you ever read Iggy Peck, Architect by Andrea Beaty?
Or build a bridge! Research whether you want to build a truss-style bridge or a cable stay bridge. Draw a design, gather materials, and get to work. You can even try a simple paper bridge challenge outlined here.
A favorite STEM project for kids is to build something that goes such as a rubber band car, balloon car, wind-powered car, etc… You can find a fun list of our favorite things that go STEM project ideas here.
Explore the different types of simple machines! How many are there? Can you build one like we did here out of recycled items?
MATH STEM IDEAS
Use our LEGO math challenge cards to get even more hands on learning involved!
Explore 3D shapes by building paper shapes (adds in some engineering too!)
Or build 3D or 2D structures and shapes with items like toothpicks and marshmallows!
Make your own geoboard to explore shapes and patterns
How about fractions with fruit including apples and oranges! Turn it into a fruit salad.
Pull out a recipe and get baking to explore more forms of measurement. Chocolate chip cookies are perfect for adding in a little science of baking too.
Try out non-standard measurement around the classroom or house. Grab a container of paper clips as the non-standard unit of measure and challenge the kids to measure the room. It could take them awhile. But you could also do a piece of paper, their shoe, or even the height of a chair by making a chain.
Take the 100 cup tower challenge for a fun combo of math and engineering! Or use a 100 of anything!
INCREDIBLE STEM PROJECTS FOR KIDS ANY DAY OF THE YEAR!
Now that you have an amazing assortment of STEM projects for kids to explore, which will you start with first. Make sure to download theses FREE STEM resources to guide you on your STEM journey. Save the STEM calendar to your desktop and use the clickable links to find the perfect STEM project right away.