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.


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.


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 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 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.


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.


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.

πŸ€– Coding Toys for Toddlers and Preschoolers (Age 2, 3, 4) - 2023/4 Expert Picks

Code and Go Mouse with young child

At Tech Age Kids we've been testing and writing about kids coding toys for over 10 years. This post is our round up of the current options for toddlers and preschoolers for Christmas 2023 (and into 2024). Most of the options are 'floor robots', programmable toys that you give directional commands to so they can move around in the real world. We've also included programmable toy trains and a coding board game for this age group. In this post we'll focus on options for age 2 (LEGO Duplo Coding Express),  3 and 4 year olds (check the age rating for individual products). Many will still be suitable for 5 years but we'll cover. 

Brief Round Up

There's info below on the research into kids coding toys. But if you're in a hurry, here's a quick round up of the highlights for 2023. 

Things to consider: Batteries vs Charger. Screen vs Screenless (or both). Will the character appeal to your child? Does it come with activities and accessories to retain interest? Home school education resources available? Does it work with the other toys your child enjoys (LEGO or wooden train tracks). Are there other coding toys in the brand - great for progression and matched gifts for older siblings. What budget do you have available? Are there likely to be more kids in your family that would enjoy the toy?

These are all great products with excellent reviews. The important thing is to choose an option that works for your budget and will appeal to the child you are buying for.
  • Budget value, choice of designs: Learning Resources Code and Go Robot Mouse and Coding Critters. It's worth checking out the whole range as the accessories vary between characters and the unicorn has a remote control for programming. 

  • Quirky snail: Robobloq Qobo Coding Robot. We like the different design of the Qobo snail. It's something a bit different. It's also suitable for toddlers with a starting age of 3. Qobo is programmed with physical cards that the snail, um, slides over. No screen needed. It's chunky, has lights and sounds and gets great reviews.

  • Comes with lots of resources: Sphero Indi at Home Sphere is a very well-established brand for kids coding toys with it's spherical Sphero programmable robots. Sphero Indi at home is a new addition to the range and lowers the starting age to 4. Instead of a ball, Indi is a blue vehicle. Sphero Indi comes in a kit with loads of accessories and has been designed for home use. You can use Indi with or without an app which makes it versatile.

  • Storytelling focus: Matalab Talebot Pro is a chunky floor robot for toddlers and preschoolers aged 3-5. It comes with mats with squares that the Talebot can recognise to activate actions including storytelling. The robot can be programmed using physical buttons. There are also accessories for drawing and adding LEGO Duplo blocks. 

  • Cute and Clever: Makeblock mTiny is a seriously cute programmable panda for kids aged 3-5. It can be programmed from a remote control and is screen free. We really like the buildable map tiles that allow lots of different configurations and the physical coding cards that can be scanned with the remote control. A lot of thought has gone into the design of this robot and Makeblock have a whole range of robots for older kids too. 

  • Sturdy design, classroom credentials: Blue-Bot is the Bluetooth-enabled version of the popular Bee-Bot from TTS in the UK. This is a tried and tested design with lots of accessories and lesson plans available. The Blue-Bot has the added feature of being programmable from an app. The manufacturer recommends it from age 5 but it's feature set is comparable with floor robots aimed at a younger audience. 

  • Works with wooden train tracks: The Robobloq Coding Train Set works with standard wooden train tracks and can be programmed by sticking coloured stickers on to the track. It's a bit more limited than other options but for kids who love their train tracks this might well be the one! It's recommended for kids aged 3-7/ 

  • It's LEGO! and age 2+: The LEGO Education DUPLO Coding Express is aimed at the education market but available to buy for home use too. It's a more expensive option but from a well-loved brand and with lessons and an app available. A great choice for younger kids who love LEGO Duplo where you know they'll get the value from it. 

  • Montessori aesthetic: Cubetto is a wooden floor robot that doesn't need an app. It is programmed using a board with wooden shapes. This is a premium product that has been well designed. A lot of the academic research on coding toys for this age group is carried out with the Cubetto robot. Cubetto is for kids aged 3+.

  • Board game: There's also the option of the Robot Turtles board game for kids age 4+. We used this at our Coder Dojo and it was a hit with a mixed age range. A great option to have in your family board game rotation. 

What does the research say?

This isn't a formal literature review, though I do have previous for a kids coding literature review! Floor robots, or turtles, for kids have been around a long time.  Recent floor robots and coding toys for preschoolers have also been the subject of academic research. Most research focuses on slightly older children but there is some research on toddlers and preschoolers in the 2-4 age group.

Research studies include:
  • The wonderful Radia Perlman was one of the first to explore 'tangible computing' with very young children. Her TORTIS research paper from 1974 is wonderful and demonstrates that very young children can develop computing skills while having fun. 
  • In one study, using Cubetto made 4 year olds better at programming Cubetto but didn't have a significant effect on their general cognitive skills. 
  • Research on the impact of coding in the learning of 4-year-olds is a very in-depth study which compares a child following instructions, following instructions given by a screen and programming the Cubetto robot. It's a very detailed paper, that is generally positive about the educational benefits of floor robots but suggests that the increased engagement of the floor robot can mean that children are less willing to takes turns and collaborate with each other. 
  • Further research with Cubetto again, found that children as young as three were able to successfully program the robot with some scaffolding, in particular to help with their lack of ability to use left and right directional language (I'm with the three year olds on that one!)

Coding research often tries to demonstrate that learning to code will improve other skills. We think coding itself, and the fun you have while doing it, is what's important. A quick review of the research suggests that young children can learn basic coding skills and enjoy doing it, but they won't necessarily learn other skills, coding toys are really engaging and immersive but young children are not brilliant at sharing their coding toys with other children!


Basically, don't buy a coding toy for a toddler or preschooler because you think it will turn them into a genius. Or even because it will put them on the path to a tech career. Do it because coding toys are a fun way for families to get down on the floor and interact. Do it because it's cool to program a robot to deliver an object to another person. Do it because it creates that 'flow state' where kids are utterly absorbed and engaged by an activity. 

Definitely consider how a coding toy fits with your budget, family life and your child's interest/obsessions! 

Here's a reminder of our top picks for 2023/24:

24 days of Scratch coding book cover and cute penguin

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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children: πŸ€– Coding Toys for Toddlers and Preschoolers (Age 2, 3, 4) - 2023/4 Expert Picks
πŸ€– Coding Toys for Toddlers and Preschoolers (Age 2, 3, 4) - 2023/4 Expert Picks
Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children
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