At HomeAmanda Vaden
A father and his two daughters work on a science activity at the kitchen table.

Time spent with family is time well spent. These days, more and more families with kids are looking for ways to be entertained and stay engaged at home or close to home, all while being able to share fun experiences and make lasting new memories. If you’re a parent reading this blog and are pondering what to do for your next family activity night, consider integrating some of these STEM-based ideas and you may learn something new in the process! 

As you know, STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math, but in this blog, we’re not talking about the typical textbook, worksheet, or lesson plan. At Sphero, we know STEM activities are less about the actual lesson being taught and more about how we learn through a STEM mindset

Through exploration, problem-solving, ideating, and inventing, kids learn a variety of 21st Century skills, like creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, and communication. Parents can benefit from these important skills, too, so let’s dive into these fun family STEM activities you can try together with your kids. 

14 Fun Family STEM Activities to do Together 

We’ve rounded up 14 fun (and mostly free!) STEM ideas you can try for your next family activity night.   

STEM Activities for Small Groups and Families 

Two boys code Sphero BOLTs through a maze on the living room floor.
  1. Build and test a parachute out of materials around the house. Who’s design will work best? 
  2. Create a two-player score-tracking game and challenge someone to a game of Ultimate Shootout
  3. Make a DIY bouncy ball from stuff around the house. Combine glue, borax, and cornstarch, and watch the magic happen!
    Bonus: See which ball bounces the highest.
  4. Play a game of Hot Potato… of Doom! Sound intense? It is. This version puts a hot new spin on the classic game.
  5. Challenge siblings and/or parents to go head-to-head in a game or match and use a Sphero Scorekeeper to track who wins! 
  6. Take a nature walk and try to identify different trees by their bark. How many varieties will you find?
  7. Simon Says, play a game of Simon Says! And once you master that version, kick it up a notch with randomized Simon Says 2
  8. Paint with robots. Dip ‘em, code ‘em, and roll ‘em on paper. Voila! 
  9. Have a backyard Egg and Spoon Race. Remember this timeless field day activity? Now you can do it at home, mess-free!

Family STEM Activities for the Holidays 

The Sphero BOLT LED matrix with an animated heart.

The holidays are just around the corner and many families are planning to spend more quality time together while they’re off work and out of school. Below are some festive, fun, holiday-themed STEM activities to try while you’re on break.  

  1. Create a robotic holiday ornament. Utilize Sphero BOLT’s LED matrix and front/back LED’s to code a beautiful holiday-themed animation and light up the night. 
  2. Build a catapult to launch cotton balls at a snowman. It’s exactly what it sounds like, and it’s just as fun!
  3. Code holiday art to decorate with around the house, or give it as a gift!
  4. On your mark, get set, gobble! Challenge your family to Turkey Balloon Races. Whose bird will be the winner?  
  5. Build a variety of animated holiday inventions with littleBits and make spirits bright! 

By incorporating STEM principles into family activities, parents and kids can learn and have a lot of fun together. What other fun STEM activities have you tried with your family? Share them with us on Twitter @Sphero

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