At the age of 12, kids are in between their teenage age and childhood. They want to be taken seriously and the toys or gifts you buy for them should reflect their mental and physical development. Science gifts for 12 year olds are some of the best gift items that simultaneously offer them fun and near-adult activities.
However, coming up with unique and educational gift ideas is not easy especially if you are a first time parent with zero experience on what kids of that age like or don’t like.
We have taken out the stress of looking for science gifts for girls and boys. The products reviewed below are what we know to be the absolute best science gifts for kids.
Criteria Used for the Selection of Science Related Gifts for 12 Year Olds
Choosing the best 10 science sets and gifts presented a few challenges; the most important being understanding the developmental needs of the kids and making sure the gifts reflected that.
Hundreds of toys were scrutinized and at the end, we came up with the list using the following variables:
As the kids are developing into teens, they tend to be sensitive to anything that reminds them of their childhood years. They would hate gifts that they believe are meant for kids.
We made sure the toys were more closely aligned with teenagers than with kids. That way, the chances of choosing wrong age-appropriate gifts were significantly reduced.
Bigger toys with a hint of danger and excitement in them were preferred to smaller toys.
Kids of 12 don’t really require toys that would help in the development of their fine and gross motor skills. These skills are already developed.
Developmentally, they need toys that would task them mentally. Toys that targeted their ability to focus, creativity, and learn new real-life stuff were considered more beneficially to them.
Many science gift items for tweens are focused on chemical reactions, experiments, handling of electrical circuits and so on.
These can be dangerous in the wrong hands especially if the gift pack contains really dangerous components.
We looked at the contents of the items making sure to eliminate science gifts for tweens containing harmful or dangerous components.
Though most the products came with an adult supervision requirement for safety reasons, we felt that too much of it would take out much of the fun. After all, we are buying for young adults who want to be treated like the responsible people they are.
Several toys had to be cut because they required too much, hands-on supervision from parents.
This factor is simply a direct way of acknowledging the time and effort parents put in to educate other parents about the suitability or otherwise of certain toys and gift items.
Their opinions were invaluable. We selected toys with at least 20 reviews. Anything less than that was considered not enough data set to arrive at an informed conclusion.
The toys with the highest average ratings got more traction with us. An average of 4-star rating was the starting point when using reviews as a factor in evaluating the gifts.
10 Best Science Gifts For 12 Year Olds: Review
Here you can find what we believe are the best science toys and gift ideas for young teens. Whether you child is interested in robotics or chemistry, there is something here for everyone.
1. National Geographic Mega Gem Stone Dig Kit
This science kit would make a perfect gift for archaeology enthusiasts. It could also wake up some latent interest for archaeology your kid doesn’t know about.
It comes with all the tools necessary for a dig. These include a dig brick, chisel, magnifying glass, brush, etc. Also included in the package are 15 real gemstones and crystals.
There is also a comprehensive learning guide in the package. The manual is colorfully-illustrated with simple learning tips on how gemstones are formed and mined.
As far as archeological science kits for 12 year olds go, only a few that can rival this for introducing kids to the world of archaeology and gemstones.
2. Scientific Explorer My First Mind Blowing Science
This is a fun science kit for your kid to learn the basics of science and experiment with several science tools. This gift allows your kid learn more of the things they learned at school without the stress of a classroom setting.
The chemicals included in the set include citric acid, red cabbage powder, baking soda, 3 color tablets, vegetable oil, corn starch, and much more.
Also included are science supplies such as cotton swabs, test tubes, test tube stand, plastic cups, pipettes, measuring scoops and an activity guide.
It is recommended that you should be around to supervise your kid. However, the experiments are not dangerous and you don’t need to know what is happening to be a good supervisor. Simply be there and enjoy the fun of watching your kid do amazing chemistry experiments.
3. 4M Table Top Robot
If you want your tween to learn the basics of robotics that is the new scientific frontier, a present of this hands-on kit from 4M would be ideal.
The kit would show your kid how to construct a working robot crab from scratch. The robot is able to move under its own power. It can also avoid obstacles and perform acrobatic tricks on a flat table top.
The pack comes with a detailed instructions guide on how to assemble it along with all the parts necessary to build the complete robot. Assembling it would require adult supervision, 1 AAA battery, and a Philips head screwdriver.
This is a cool science gifts item to help develop your kid’s creativity and mechanical skills as well as showing them the basics of how robots are made.
4. The Magic School Bus Chemistry Lab
Try to wrap your head around what a kid can do with a 9″ high, 15″ long school bus. Quite a lot really if the bus is a My School Bus Chemistry Lab gift pack.
Your kid can join Ms. Frizzle and her young budding scientists on a trip around the world of chemistry experiments. There are dozens of science experiments in the pack from the very simple to some complex ones to excite any keen student.
Your kid would be exposed to the rudiments of making stuff like sticky ice, slime, milk rainbow, bouncy ball, bubble sculptures, etc. They would also perform experiments such as litmus paper tests, chromatography, explode a volcano, and so much more.
To help your kid along, the pack contains 51 colorfully-illustrated experiment cards and 3 plastic trays to hold all the supplies and equipment.
5. Scientific Explorer Tasty Science
It’s time for your kid to get the answers to pastry-related questions and more. That is what this science kit is all about.
Questions like: why does dough rise and why soda drink make hissing sounds would be laid to rest. This is just the start of the journey to becoming a real food scientist.
The pack comes with litmus paper, 12 baking cups, 4 test tubes, a test tube stand, plastic vial with cap, pipette, and an activity guide to show your kid the ropes.
Also included are the following: baking soda, citric acid, fruit flavorings, food coloring, scoops, and labels. Basically, it contains everything to excite any tween that loves helping out in the kitchen.
6. Scientific Explorer Disgusting Science Kit
The Disgusting Science kit takes science and fun down several levels. It would test your ability to stand disgusting stuff without gagging or turning your nose up in obvious distaste, but if offers so much fun for your kid.
Gifting this set would teach your child many of the stuff about the body we don’t like talking about. Stuff like how slimy snot and fart are made, creating gross intestines, and so much more.
The pack features 4 Petri dishes, magnifier, 4 cotton swabs, gelatin, baking yeast, rubber balloon, plastic bag, etc. There is also an illustrated guide that is easy to understand and follow.
7. Ultimate Dinosaur Science Dig Up Kit
The excitement of finding dinosaur bones and putting the pieces together is all yours if your kit decides to let you be a part of their paleontology team. First though, you need to get them this awesome dinosaur dig up kit.
Your child’s team should be able to dig up a real dinosaur bone, tooth, poop and dinosaur skeleton. And like a real scientist, your kid can then build a 3D model of T-Rex from the collected bones.
The science set comes with an excavation brick with dino bone, tooth, poop and T-Rex skeleton embedded inside; tools such as brush, hammer, magnifying glass, etc.; an activity booklet containing puzzles, mazes and challenges; and a guide with fun facts and information about dinosaurs.
Overall, this is a great gift item to teach kids history, science, and about dinosaurs.
8. Playz Kaboom! Explosive Combustion Science Lab Kit
This awesome science toy is for kids who love having a laugh at other people’s expense. It allows your child to turn a prankster that uses harmless bombs as props.
Your kid would learn how to make rockets, rocket balloons, fizzy bombs, fun explosive bag, and create a color explosion using the power of chemical reactions.
The set contains over 25 hands-on projects and comes with an activity guide that is very comprehensive and filled with all the most important information necessary to make safe bombs and firecrackers.
Though the explosive and bombs are not dangerous, it would be wise though to stick around and supervise your kid.
9. Tinkering Labs Electric Motors Catalyst STEM Kit
With a present like the Electric Motors Catalyst STEM Kit, your kid would be shown how to making stuff using real motors, hardware, and real wood. It is fun and at the same time also takes a serious trip into engineering, robotics, and circuit building for kids.
The science set features 50 real parts including everything needed to design and build robots, power electric motor cars, and so many more. It is down to your child to think of new ideas and concepts to keep the fun going.
To challenge children to think of creative ways of using the kit, there is a deck of Challenge Cards that makes helpful suggestions on what children should build.
The pack also comes with batteries and a huge paperwork surface where children can arrange the parts before coupling them together.
10. Snap Circuits Snaptricity Electronics Exploration Kit
Kids interested in finding out how things work love this science set. With over 40 parts including batteries, snap circuit boards and a meter, your tween should easily complete several electric projects. This kit exposes the kid to understanding how electricity and magnets are used in the home.
The components are easy to put together and don’t come apart easily. The instructions booklet included is well-illustrated with a detailed explanation of many of the principles involved.
The meter included in the set works excellently giving information and readings about what is happening as components are added or removed.
Over 75 projects can be built from the components, and it would be fun watching how many different projects your kid can complete. Nevertheless, this kit is hours of STEM-related fun for your child.
The reviewed science gifts for teens above are all guaranteed to deliver on what they promise. Go ahead and select any one of them and watch your kid become restless with excitement.
Remember, some of the gift items require a bit of supervision from you, but don’t try and take out the fun by being too strict or too hands-on. Your presence is just to make sure they don’t indulge in something silly or unsafe.
You’d be pleasantly supposed how much fun the whole experience would be for you too.