Have your kids started learning computer programming? Computer coding or programming is basically the language we use to talk to computers. Since computers will be an essential part of the future world our kids going to be in, it is important for today’s children to have fundamental knowledge of how to communicate with computers. For some very basic concepts, they can learn coding through cool activities without using a computer. After they learned fundamental concepts, it is best to get hands on with actual coding. These interactive toys we are introducing today will be ideal next steps for kids to further their journey of computer programming.
Toys Teaching Kids Computer Programming
Programmable Rover is a good starter toy for kids to learn coding. Kids can program the move commands for the little robot rover, then just watch the rover following the code instructions. It comes with a manual to teach kids how to program the robot.
Robot Turtle Game is a board game for kids to learn programming language. It provides crucial brain development and computer programming skills to children as young as 4 years old in the context of family fun. Players dictate the movements of their Robot Turtle tokens on a game board by playing Code Cards: Forward, Left and Right. When a player’s Robot Turtle reaches a jewel they win! 2-5 players can play at once and everyone who gets the Robot Jewel wins.
Code Master Programming Logic Game is suggested for school age kids. Kids will have 60 programming challenges, from easy to hard.
Code Monkey Island is a board game designed to teach players of all ages computer science logic! As the wise leader of your own tribe of monkeys, it’s up to you to guide all three of your monkeys safely around the board and into the banana grove. You’ll have to use concepts like conditional statements, looping, booleans, assignment operators and more to earn moves for your monkeys, dodge quicksand traps, and score some delicious fruit along the way!
Ozobot Bit is a tiny programmable robot. Kids can draw their own maze and then program Ozobot to go through the maze. Kids program on computer or through the app, then play with Ozobot off screen. Teachers and parents have access to free programming & STEM inspired lesson plans that fit for different ages and levels.
Bitsbox helps kids learn to code with 30+ game and app programming projects. Kids build apps and see them run. It works on all major tablets like iPad, Android, Amazon Fire.
Makeblock mBot Educational Robot Kit is an easy-to-run robot kit for kids to get hands-on experience about graphical programming, electronics, robotics. Kids can build a wall avoidance robot, or a line follower robot with musical tones, or a football robot, … and using the free app to tell the robots what to do.
Sphero Ball has more than 10 free apps for kids to learn different programming. The product website has many teaching ideas using the toy.
Dash Robot is another robot great for kids 8 and up. Similar to Sphero Ball, kids can code in the free apps to command the robot perform various tasks: dance, light up, make sounds, avoid obstacles, …
LEGO Mindstorm lets kids to build the LEGO robot and programming it to manage the robot’s movements. Kids can start from the very easy ones, like move forward 3 steps, backward 3 steps. From there, they can progress to very complicated program coding. The package has user manual, but if you need more help, this Mindstorm Discovery Book is a good one to help kids who just start using it, and Mindstorm Laboratory offers more playful building and coding ideas when kids need more challenges beyond the user manual.
Puzzlets Cork the Volcano has over 120 puzzle levels as kids plan strategies to save Pear Island. Kids will plan, program, and play with this exciting game, to be successful they must think like a programmer while having fun!
Minecraft Server Design teaches kids ages 8-14 professional Java programming. Kids can program, design, and build their own customized Minecraft server and share with friends. Come with the package, there are over 30 hours of self-paced, engaging lessons.
Sphero BB-8 App-Enabled Droid has something unlike any other robot – an adaptive personality that changes as you play. Based on your interactions, BB-8 will show a range of expressions and even perk up when you give voice commands. Kids can program it using the app, watch it explore autonomously. They can even create and view holographic recordings.
For more resources for kids to learn computer coding and programming, visit the Best Learning Tools for Kids to Learn Computer Coding.
As mentioned earlier in the beginning of this post, for young children, you can help them learn coding without a computer.