NEWS$show=/search/label/news

Here's where you'll find all the latest news about technology for children. We love to follow cool new inventions on Kickstarter and we hunt out all the latest announcements about tech toys and gadgets for the coming Christmas holidays. You'll also get our take on children's technology stories in the media.

REVIEWS$show=/search/label/review

Our kids technology product reviews are intended to help you work out whether a toy, gadget or kit is a good fit for your child or family. There's lots of cool stuff available, but is it the right choice for the child or teenager that you are buying for? We'll help you make the right choices and get the best value for money.

GIFT GUIDES$show=/search/label/gift%20guide

Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends assemble. We create gift lists to help you make good choices for kids technology which helps them develop the right skills for the future. We research the best in Coding Toys and Games, Making / Craft Tools and Kits, STEM/STEAM related gifts, Programmable Robots, Electronics Kits and Gadgets for Tech Age Kids and Teens.

PROJECTS$show=/search/label/project

Get crafty with technology. Here we'll post all our ideas and projects using technology to get creative and making with kids. You'll find anything from making a lemon battery to a glow-in-the-dark Minecraft sword. Our projects are tried and tested on our own kids or at events we run, so we are sure you can have a go at home with your kids. Some of our projects use specific tech gadgets which we provide links for you to purchase.

STEM$show=/search/label/stem

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. In recent years there is an increased focus in these areas of study. We like to include Art and Design too, so we often talk about STEAM (A stands for Art). At Tech Age Kids we believe Coding is a new literacy and children need to understand how technology works, practice making skills and grow in their curiosity to make a better future for us all.

CODING$show=/search/label/coding

Coding is increasingly being recognised as an important skill for children to learn. Some will learn to code at school or at a coding club, but it's brilliant if they get support at home too.

ELECTRONICS$show=/search/label/electronics

We think it's really important for kids to get hands-on with electronics and learn how to make circuits and write code to control hardware. Younger kids can start with conductive playdough. For kids who like to combine craft and tech, littleBits are fab. And we love SAM Labs wireless electronics components for making it easy for kids to make Internet of Things inventions. Lots of electronics kits for kids have support for the Arduino microprocessor environment. The DuinoKit Jr is one of our favourites. Arduino is a fab skill for older kids and teens to develop.

ROBOTICS$show=/search/label/robotics

We love robots at Tech Age Kids, especially programmable ones. We've got lots of them and write reviews and projects that use them. Our programmable robots for kids buying guide is a good place to start if you're not sure what's available. Roby the mBot Meccano robot dog is one of our popular projects and has been with us to lots of events. Our Ozobot LEGO trailer is fab for kids who love LEGO and robots.

MAKING AND CRAFT$show=/search/label/making

We're advocates of the creative use of technology, but this needs to be balanced with developing physical skills such as papercraft, woodwork, clay modelling, technical drawing and soldering. If children don't develop these skills as they grow up then physical making projects can become frustrating rather than fun. The Maker Community uses the term 'making' as a broad term to include all sorts of artisan skills or craft activities. Being able to make things can lead to life-long hobbies or even careers. It's a great feeling to be able to take a project from an idea in your head to a real object that does something. We're particularly interested to explore products that combine maker skills with tech skills such as electronics but others focus purely on the physical making skills that are still important to modern making.

Developing Computational Thinking Skills for Children Age 4-7


Computational thinking is the set of skills you need to be able to get computers to do useful things. It includes logical thinking, planning ahead, working with data, being able to give precise instructions and make predictions. There are lots of activities that can help young children aged 4-7 to develop these skills.

Computational thinking skills can be developed through coding but there are lots of other activities that help too. A lot of them are screenless which helps to develop modern skills while also developing other important skills including motor skills and communication.

Some of the ideas here are classic kids games and activities that you might have tried anyway, they just happen to be great for computational thinking skills.
  1. Brain teasers

    Puzzles and activities like spot the difference, crosswords and brain teasers are great for developing computational thinking. You can find them on children's activity sheets at restaurants, fast food, and cereal boxes, activity sheets at museums and event days and in children's magazines and annuals. Encourage children to have a go and help them out with harder puzzles to improve their technique.
  2. Apps

  3. Most kids enjoy spending time on a phone or tablet. Lots of computer games actually develop computational thinking. Children have to predict what's going to happen and come up with strategies for solving problems and winning games. Some apps specifically develop logical thinking skills. Look out for games that require the use of logic, memory or planning ahead. And also games that encourage kids to experiment and create digitally. We recommend apps by Tinybop and Toca Boca. Read our review of Tinybop apps.
  4. Logic Games

    There are some great hands-on logic games that can help develop children's problem solving skills. Smart Games make a range of logic games that are designed for younger children that develop logical thinking skills while children play.
  5. Trump Card Games

    Trump card games and trading card games are brilliant for learning to work with data. Children who have played Top Trumps style games find it much easier to understand the concepts of data and working with databases. There are loads of different sets available so you should be able to find something that fits your child's interests.
  6. Surveys and Collections

    Surveys are a great way to get kids thinking about working with data. Depending on the time of year you might be able to find surveys about butterflies, trees or other wildlife to participate in. Look out for the results or look at the results of the survey from previous years. Explain that computers are very good at working with large amounts of data but people need to think about what questions to ask.

    Tap into children's interests to learn about data. Children are often really interesting in facts and data about their favourite subjects. It might be the statistics for their favourite football team, knowing all the details of all the LEGO sets in their favourite range or knowing all the details about the characters in their favourite books or TV show.

    Questions about the biggest, smallest, oldest, first, fastest are great for thinking about data. 
  7. Guess Who

    Guess Who is a classic children's game that develops an understanding of data and logic as kids play. It's great for learning to spot similarities and differences and helping to understand how to ask good questions about data. Kids don't need to worry about that while they're playing though!

    You can find themed versions of Guess Who and even a version for younger children.
  8. Cluedo Jr / Clue Jr

    Cluedo (Clue in the US) is a classic game of logical deduction. There's a junior version of the game which has been designed for children from age 5.

    The junior version still involves logical deduction but it doesn't have the gruesome setting of the original. Instead the mystery involves cake!
  9. Secret Codes

    Anything to do with encoding messages and breaking secret codes is brilliant for computational thinking.

    Melissa and Doug make a Secret Decoder activity set which includes lots of activities that will introduce kids to the basics of cryptography. The kit is recommended for age 7+ so it's at the higher end of the age range, but some kids will enjoy it at a younger age, especially if a parent joins in.
  10. Physical Puzzle Toys

    There are lots of physical puzzle toys that develop problem-solving and planning skills. Just tell kids they are fidget toys! The puzzle ball is a popular option - you have to move balls one at a time to match the colour of the hole and the ball. If kids are going to spend ages fidgeting then they might as well do it with a toy that develops useful skills.

    Kids who want a real challenge could try a 2 x 2 Rubik's cube. It's actually more difficult to solve a 2 x 2 cube than you might think!
  11. Pattern and Rule-based Crafts

    Lots of craft activities involve working with patterns or following rules. Bead-threading kits and pixel art mosaics are good examples. There are also colour-by-numbers kits that involve mapping from a number to a colour, you can find versions for painting, kits that use pencil crayons and mosaics and there are even apps that allow you to colour by numbers. We particularly like the tiny puzzle-like plastic bricks made by Simbrix.



Name

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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children: Developing Computational Thinking Skills for Children Age 4-7
Developing Computational Thinking Skills for Children Age 4-7
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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children
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