HoliDAY of Play 2015

K’NEX Launches Brave & Beautiful Mighty Makers Campaign

KNEXMightyMakersK’NEX Brands launched Brave & Beautiful, a video marketing campaign that coincides with their new Mighty Makers line that encourages and inspires girls to build big ideas and dream even bigger. The Mighty Makers line, which was introduced earlier this year, features STEM-themed engineering toys designed to empower girls through creative, story-based building sets.

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Laurent Doll Creates Accessory Set to Support GEMS

Microsoft Word - GEMS stands for Girls Excelling in Math and SciGirls Excelling in Math and Science (GEMS) has a goal of helping girls develop confidence, creativity, and interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), as well as art and learning as a whole through making. To help in this effort, Laurent Doll has launched a School Days accessory set for dolls, which includes school clothes, a backpack, a book, a pencil, paper, a ruler, and a calculator.

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littleBits Raises $44.2M in New Funding and Expands Its Executive Team

littleBits1littleBits Electronics Inc. has landed $44.2 million in new funding to further its growth. The additional funding round was led by DFJ Growth, with additional participation from new investors Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, Grishin Robotics, and Wamda Capital, among others.

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ThinkFun and MakerBot Launch Maker Studio Construction Sets Online at Thingiverse

ThinkFun,MakerStudioThanks to a partnership between MakerBot and ThinkFun, Maker Studio Construction Sets are available for free at MakerBot Thingiverse, a design community for discovering, making, and sharing 3-D printable things. Maker Studio Construction Sets allow ordinary household items to be transformed into engineering-inspired machines, sparking users’ imaginations and interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) subjects.

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Toys “R” Us Debuts Exclusive Blaze and the Monster Machines Toy Line

Basic Plush ZegNow through the end of July, a new line of vehicles, die-cast, and plush from Fisher-Price, based on the hit preschool show, Blaze and the Monster Machines, is available at Toys “R” Us stores nationwide and at

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CWIST and Science Buddies Partnering for STEM Education

CWIST LOGOScience Buddies will join the CWIST platform, giving kids and parents additional resources to learn something new and build on their in-classroom science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.

CWIST offers a crowd-sourced library of educational and fun challenges for kids ages 5 to 11, including customized content, challenges, and wishes from curated partners. The not-for-profit Science Buddies empowers K to 12 students, parents, and teachers to find free project ideas and help in all areas of science from physics to food science, and music to microbiology.

Together, CWIST and Science Buddies will create customized STEM education challenges for the CWIST platform, available at Membership is free and provides access to thousands of challenges in dozens of categories.

Playrific Introduces New App for STEM Education

playrificPlayrific has introduced its new TechStars Tech Ed STEM & Arts app for preschoolers, which was recently announced by Computer Explorers as part of its tech ed program for preschoolers and elementary-aged children. The app is now available on iTunes.

Playrific created this app to support Computer Explorer’ TechStars program because children’ interests and abilities start taking shape early and STEM education helps kids emerge as problem solvers, investigators, and innovators. STEM competence is expected to play heavily into more than 60 percent of all professional careers in the next 20 to 30 years, and this app lets TechStars kids enjoy learning and exploring STEM & Arts activities and games anywhere via iPhone or iPad.