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.

BFX Festival Family Weekend

Tech Age Kids partnered with BFX Festival to bring an exciting tech event for families to Bournemouth, UK on the 7th and 8th of October 2017.

Tickets (£10 for a family of 6) for Saturday or Sunday are available at the ticket office. Use discount code 'FW50' for 50% off. Tickets will also be available on the door (card only). The event hashtag is #BFX2017.

We'd love to see what you make at the Festival so tweet your creations and picture with #BFXkids.

Sign up to our mailing list to stay in touch.


Activities, Demos and Talks

Throughout the weekend there will be talks, activities and demonstrations to inspire the next generation of visual effects and games enthusiasts between the ages of 5-18 years.

Tech Age Kids have created a range of activities and workshops for the Festival. Carry on creating at home with lots of ideas below.




Talks

  • What is the micro:bit and what can you make with it? Dr Tracy Gardner
  • How to mix craft and tech to develop modern skills - Elbrie de Kock


micro:bit in Wonderland

Come and take part in our hands-on workshop and try out the bonus projects that accompany our upcoming micro:bit in Wonderland book

 





Story Boarding with Electro Mat

The Electro Mat, was originally made as an add-on for the old style Bee-Bots, but we've been using the voice recorder for all sorts of projects. The voice recorder is a simple and easy introduction to tech craft projects.

Here are some of the things we've made with the Electro Mat Voice Recorder:

PURCHASE: Unfortunately the Electro Mat is no longer being manufactured. You can buy a kit from us at BFX Festival or you may be lucky to find some on eBay!



Bloxels Video Game Maker

Bloxels is a connected toys, a physical pixel board with an app that kids can use to design their own computer games.

We were original Kickstarter backers and have watched the product develop into a fantastic tool to help kids create their own digital games.


PURCHASE: Bloxels is available from Amazon USA |  Bloxels Store (shipping costs approx $35) | A slightly cheaper option may be eBay.com



StikBot Zanimation Studio - Stop Motion Animation


StikBot, an internet sensation, is an articulated plastic bot, which you can use to make stop-motion animations.

This year, StikBot launched the #StikBot Zanimation Studio, which includes a green screen studio and Zing Animation App.


PURCHASE: StikBot Zanimation is available from Amazon UK



OhBot Robot

OhBot is a robot head that can be programmed with a Scratch-like graphical language. OhBot supports speech generation and speech recognition. OhBot is great for maker families.

We will be demonstrating OhBot at the BFX Festival Family Weekend. 

PURCHASE: OhBot is available from the OhBot Store.



MaKey MaKey Game Controller

MaKey MaKey is an electronics board that plugs into a computer via USB and allows you to turn everyday conductive objects into inputs.

You may have heard of the "banana piano" - this is made using the MaKey MaKey too.



PURCHASE: MaKey MaKey is available from the Amazon UK



Pixel Art with Simbrix


Simbrix are small plastic puzzle-like bricks which lock together to create two dimensional pixel art. A lot of games, like Minecraft and Terreria use pixels as game graphics.

We love Simbrix, and especially with colder weather setting in, is a perfect table top activity for kids.


PURCHASE: Simbrix is available from Amazon UK or buy a Cute Crafter pack at the Festival (we still have some original packs, so you'll get more brix for your money - until stocks last!)


Coding Projects


We Bare Bears Scratch Coding

Scratch is a graphical coding tool for primary aged kids to make games and animations.

 Kids can learn to make an animation, but using the We Bare Bears projects on Scratch. This activity is aimed at primary aged kids.

  1. Open your web browser and go to http://scratch.mit.edu/bearstack
  2. Follow the instructions to create your own animation using the We Bare Bears from Cartoon Network
  3. Save your project
  4. If you have a Scratch account then share your project (check with parents first) and then add it to the BFX studio: https://scratch.mit.edu/studios/3482352/
  5. Show people your cool animation




Pixar-in-a-Box with Khan Academy


How do Pixar make a field of waving blades of grass, a huge number of different robots or dinosaur skin? Find out about these effects and lots more.

  1. Go to https://www.khanacademy.org/partner-content/pixar
  2. Choose one of the lessons to find out about how Pixar make visual effects for films such as Brave, Inside Out, Toy Story and more. 
  3. Try the activities with a  Inline images 2 or Inline images 1image try out animation techniques. 
  4.  Can you render some dinosaur skin and set up a particle firework display?





Gift Guides for Tech Kids


At Tech Age Kids, we search the web for the best tech toys and gadgets to nurture creativity and exploration of tech. Below are some of your top gift recommendations for tech-savvy kids.








Name

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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children: BFX Festival Family Weekend
BFX Festival Family Weekend
Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children
https://www.techagekids.com/p/bfx-festival-family-weekend.html
https://www.techagekids.com/
https://www.techagekids.com/
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