Sinclair Cares: Great educational toys in 2017

Photo: Sinclar Broadcasting

If you still haven't figured out the perfect gift for the little ones this holiday season, we're taking a look at toys that are packed with education and tons of fun.

For Sinclair Cares, Joy Lambert showed us a few educational toys the child on your list will have a hard time putting down.

Toy store aisles and online searches can get exhausting for parents like Kim Curtiss, trying to find that perfect holiday gift.

"I'm always looking at mom blogs to see what they're giving and what they recommend," Curtiss said.

This year the hottest toy isn't one item, it's a category.

"What's hot right now is math, STEM, anything teaching science," said Claudia Towles, owner of aMuse Toys

Towles says toy companies are reinforcing science, technology, engineering and math in their products, filling toy aisles with education.

Even though MagnaTiles are nothing new to store shelves, Towles says it's a classic favorite that promotes early math concepts as a child ages, add to the collection so they can build more complex structures.

"Think about it, with Legos the more pieces they have the more they can build. These don't hurt though when you stand on them," she said with a laugh.

It's never too early to start learning. The NogginStik is one of the hottest toys for babies.

"This changes color every time you shake it, it helps with visual tracking," said Towles. "It's educational. Now does the baby know they're being educated? Of course not, but it teaches cause and effect."

Even Barbie is hopping on the STEM wagon.

"Barbie something very familiar to kids, but STEM and engineering concept may not be. So this is trickery," said Towles.

And don't forget family game night. Klask is a skill game with magnetic control.

"This is one we sell to college kids and 5-year-olds, it's kind of like air hockey but without the danger. And it doesn't take that much space," said Towles.

This holiday season the emphasis is on anything that fosters critical thinking and problem solving.

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