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August 15th, 2020

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Happy Customers

Such a beautifully made product with lots of possibilities for open ended play. We have used them for simple maths counting but also in our imagery small world play for hay bales. We love our set!

— erryn s.

I purchased this for my second grader who is having a little trouble learning math facts and concepts. Until we were unexpectedly homeschooling, I wasn’t fully aware of her struggles and wondered if Kontu was too simple to help her. I’m so glad I ordered the large kit! Kontu is the PERFECT visual and manipulative to help with understanding part/whole and learning math facts with better speed.

— summer c.

These new and exciting wooden toys have been an instant success in our classroom! The children are enjoying the magnet feature and are using them in many ways! Thank you for designing an excellent product!


We love our Kontu STEM blocks! The wood is so smooth to touch and the magnets have exactly the right strengths. Patrick was also so helpful while ordering. A definite recommendation :)


Kontu STEM blocks are a wonderful addition to our toys! The activities naturally lend themselves to rich conversations about parts and wholes, comparing numbers, and benchmark numbers. To top it off, these blocks are incredibly well made. They are a noticeably higher quality than most toys on the market. I know they will be part of our STEM activities for years to come.

— nelly

My daughter loves her Kontu set. She’s just starting to grasp numbers and counting, she loved doing the activity cards together with me, while having fun with balance and stacking. Thank you!

— a happy parent

3 Discoveries

As a new father in 2015, I became very curious about the brain development of my infant daughter. What was I supposed to do to support her in developing her full potential? My partner and I read lots of books and all of them emphasized literacy. So we started reading to our child when she was just 6-months-old. Yet, being a software engineer, I asked myself "What about math? When do we start and what do we do?" This initial question launched me into a years-long quest in which I made three astounding discoveries.

Neurons 90% wired by age 5

Early Math improves overall school success

Playing is learning

Did you know? Our children's brains form 90% of their neural connections by age five. Think of neural connections as the wires that connect the cells in the brain. These connections form the basis of the brain's architecture and have a fundamental impact on a child's emotional and cognitive function. When I read this I was blown away! This means that before our children even start formal schooling, they are already "wired-up." Whatever happens after this period simply builds upon these critical first five years.

I then delved into the academic research on the importance of early math experiences in early childhood. I discovered a highly cited research study pointed to early math skills at the start of Kindergarten as the strongest predictor of overall school success. Further studies I found pointed to the implications of early math skills on the likelihood of college entry. As a parent, I felt like I was in ground-breaking territory. Nothing I was reading in the parenting blogs talking about this research nor revealed a path forward for parents like myself who were interested in these issues.

Very fortunately, I was then exposed to the work of Maria Montessori, Reggio Emilia, and Rudolf Steiner. I'm not an expert in any of their philosophies, but my take-away from their years of work and dedication was that our young children learn best through engaging with the world around them and especially through playful experiences where they are lead by their interest and desire to experience and explore. Playing truly is learning.

With all of this research in mind, I looked for something that could help us engage our daughter's mind in these crucial areas. I found nothing tailored just for families, not online and not in toy stores. So I set out to create the thing we needed on our journey of raising our child. The result is Kontu® STEM Blocks.

Make an Impact

By pre-ordering, you are directly helping children in need. Kontu will donate a portion of each sale to U.S. nonprofits that support equitable early childhood education.