Elenco’s new Smartivity Pinball Machine combines fun and educational! | Source: Elenco/the Toy Insider

Bring the fun of the arcade right to your table!

Elenco’s Smartivity Pinball Machine is the perfect combination of fun and educational. Perfect for young engineers ages 8 and up, kids will discover how a pinball machine works before they challenge their friends to an epic pinball tournament.

Unlike your classic arcade machine from the ‘80s, the Smartivity Pinball Machine is made out of laser-cut wooden pieces that slide together tightly, ensuring a snug fit. Sourced from high-quality, reengineered materials using green practices, this STEM toy is eco-friendly, sustainable, and recyclable — nothing goes to waste!

The recommended building time is 180 minutes, which may be hard for little hands (and little minds) to build alone. Parents may want to stick around as kids build their machines, in order to offer help or support as they follow the step-by-step instructions. Building is mess-free, with rubber bands instead of glue to help keep pieces together.

The best part? Kids are learning about levers, energy transfer, and momentum without even knowing it. It’s the perfect segue into the new school year. After a summer of running around and deliberately forgetting everything they learned last year, it can be hard to get kids to play with educational toys after a full school day. Kids won’t even realize the STEM parts of their brains are active as they complete this fun, new build.

Kids will learn about levers, energy transfer, and momentum as they build their very own pinball machine | Source: Elenco

That’s what Elenco does best: They make educational toys fun. Little arcade builders will love their pinball machine not only because they know how it works, but also because they built it with their own two hands. They finish the project with a sense of accomplishment — and then it’s game time.

Despite a long construction time, playtime is infinite — and extremely easy. Using the included marbles, kids can launch their pinball and find the levers on the side of the machine to control the direction of the ball. There are ways to make the track harder, with the included vaults and various slots scattered on the pinball board. Play alone, or have a pinball tournament and try to beat the highest score!

One of the things I like the best about the Smartivity Pinball Machine is that it’s portable. It doesn’t require any batteries or charging and is relatively small — I could fit it in my bag at the end of the day. Kids can truly take this anywhere: Think airplanes, parks, beaches, car rides. Wherever you go, the Smartivity Pinball Machine can go. Although the marbles are small and easy to lose, it’s nothing that $3 at the local toy store can’t fix. The pieces are rigid enough that they don’t bend, making it easy to pack into a carry-on or day bag. When playtime is over, it can be stored as is. It’s the perfect schlep-along toy.

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Elenco’s Smartivity Pinball Machine is an awesome, educational toy for kids who are curious about how the world works. Whether it’s family game night or a friendly competition, kids are sure to be one step ahead by knowing the inner workings of their own pinball machine. Who’s ready to play some pinball?

About the author

Hannah Sacks

Hannah Sacks

Hannah Sacks is an editorial assistant at The Toy Insider, The Pop Insider, and The Toy Book. Despite being new(ish) to the world of toys, Hannah is slowly learning which toy boxes open which way and is getting really good at guessing how many batteries go in each toy. An avid reader, her first love is late Victorian literature paired with a huge plate of dumplings. When she’s not reading, she loves to attend concerts, cook elaborate dinners, and snuggle up with her two cats, Oscar and Percy.