Thursday, 28 July 2016

We regularly play Simbrix as a family and recently discovered innovative ways to build new designs - 3D structures and working with diagonals. In this quick post we'll show you how to get started.

Simbrix is a brilliant tool to practice design thinking. We've reviewed these hama-bead-like puzzle pieces and think they make a fab downtime, screenless activity for kids.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Amazon have announced the Launchpad Kickstarter Collection and they have included lots of our favourite kid tech products. Here at Tech Age Kids we love to follow the latest in children's technology through from a crowdfunding campaign to a successful product.

We recently put together a list of awesome crowdfunded kid tech products that we had backed. It's great to see Amazon highlighting some fab products that have their roots in crowdfunding.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Pokémon Go is great for motivating kids to start coding. Get them playing Pokémon Go first to get outside and get some exercise and when they've walked a few kilometres to hatch some eggs and their legs are tired you can use their interest to set them off coding.

I've put together a few activity ideas for getting kids coding using augmented reality and Pokémon themed activities. It's looking like Pokémon Go is going to be the app that tips augmented reality over from being a curiosity to an everyday occurrence. Why not give your kids a headstart on thinking about how they can augment reality through coding?

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

A lot of parents will be wondering what all the hype is about surrounding Pokémon Go. Here at Tech Age Kids we've been playing the game to help parents get to grips with the basic language and gameplay of the latest augmented reality mobile game app - Pokémon Go. In our opinion it is a fantastic game to get kids out and about and discover new places we may have not noticed before.

Unfortunately there is very little in the form of instructions on how to play the game in the app. A quick search on Google, soon provides a wealth of information on how to play the game.

It is great fun to figure it out as you go, and you are sure to meet plenty of people on your journey willing to share their experience.

Monday, 18 July 2016

OK, so you've heard about how Pokémon Go is getting kids outside. Is it really effective at getting kids fit and active? We love technology but it needs to be part of a balanced life where kids get exercise and learn other valuable skills. We're always looking for ways that technology can be used to encourage good habits.

We've only officially had Pokémon Go in the UK for a few days now and the servers have been down or patchy for some of that. But the weather has been gorgeous and we've had plenty of time to find out what all the fuss is about.

Thursday, 14 July 2016

My kids are huge Pokémon fans and have been waiting patiently for Pokémon Go to be released in the UK. It's finally here - Pokémon Go was released today in the UK. In true form, my teen found a workaround and have been playing it since it came out in the US, so we've had a bit of a chance to evaluate if it is safe for kids to play.

If your kids are Pokémon fans, they are going to beg you for Pokémon Go. But what is it, and why is it so popular?

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

It's often assumed that children need to progress from graphical programming languages such as Scratch to text-based programming languages such as Python or JavaScript. I find this ironic as I spent much of my career working on developing graphical languages to make software development more accessible to adults with subject knowledge rather than coding expertise. I also spent a lot of time developing software using graphical languages (often with some text mixed in.)

This article is going to get into some detail. For parents wondering whether their child needs to move on to a text-based language, the summary is:
  • Graphical vs textual isn't really that important an issue. 
  • It's whether a particular language allows your child to do what they want to do in a way that's efficient and enjoyable for them. 
  • Start with what they want to make and find a good language for that which is suited to their expertise level and the way they think. 
  • It's a myth that adults don't use graphical languages. They do.