What is the best coding toy for kids? First of all, the toy should do the job. Namely, it should encourage the development of skills necessary for coding. Since coding basics are pretty complicated for young children, the device should make learning as simple as possible. Secondly, a good toy for coding should come with accessories so that it could be expanded. Thirdly, learning should not be a passive process or, put it otherwise, choose a toy that teaches. Then, look at the quality of the materials it is made from. The toy should be well-built and reliable. Keep in mind that your kid may drop the toy — and more than once — and a flimsy product may break apart or get damaged. And finally, look for a fun toy to encourage your kid to play with it and thus develop his or her coding skills. We believe that Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot for Kids 6+ meets these criteria best.
Why have we chosen it? The product is made by Wonder Workshop, which is a Silicon Valley-based robotics and education startup. Founded in 2012, the company is a winner of several prestigious awards. The team of Wonder Workshop has developed a number of robot toys for developing computational and problem-solving thinking.
How Do Coding Toys Help in Child Development?
While some may say the jury is still out on to what degree coding toys are useful to developing children, many scientists do agree on one thing: coding toys help to create enthusiasm for coding processes from an early age.
Many children go on to develop passions for processes they are exposed to from an early age, and coding toys are no different in that regard. These toys allow children to become familiar with coding processes before they can even begin to process what coding is, creating a lifelong familiarity with and passion for these processes.
What’s more, these toys can help children develop vital skills from an early age. Many coding toys challenge and develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills of children, making them indispensable for helping children to begin to think critically early on.
Many parents will enjoy getting their children away from screens, as not all coding toys require a screen time commitment from children using them. Instead, these toys help children to get hands-on with a toy that engages them cognitively without worrying about an uptick in their screen time.
What Kind of Coding Toy Is The Best?
As with any other category of toys, there are many potential types of coding toys for parents to choose from.
Robots can be extremely fun and engaging for children and offer them with a more traditional approach to coding fundamentals.
Tablet games are potentially more familiar for children, easily accessible, and portable. It is likely that parents and children will already have the infrastructure set up to accommodate coding apps on their tables.
On the other hand, unplugged coding toys help to get children away from tablets and instead of enjoying a more kinesthetic experience.
TOP-6 Best Coding Toys for Kids
Below, you will find a review of the TOP-6 best coding toys for kids at a price ranging from $50 to $150. Some models are perfect for children ages 5 through 12, while others are recommended for children grades Kindergarten through second. These toys will help your kid to develop problem-solving and logic skills as well as work on coding skills.
1. Osmo Coding Awbie Game | Best For Ages 5-12
This coding game is a tablet game that allows children to also have a hands-on experience. Perfect for children ages 5 through 12, the Abbie helps develop children’s problem-solving skills, logic skills, and more by allowing them to experience an open-world adventure on their tablet.
Children will have to problem-solve with the coding blocks given to them. Merging tactile learning with the unconstrained world of app gaming, children will be able to use their coding skills a way never seen before.
Osmo: Check the current price
2. Ozobot Bit Coding Robot | Best For Building Early STEAM Skills
Recommended for children ages 6 and up, the Ozobot combines kinesthetic learning with tablet coding in a way similar to that of the Osmo - but with a twist. As children begin to learn the basics of coding thanks to the color-coded pieces included in this pack, they also begin to develop a bot that responds to their coding commands.
Thanks to the Ozobot, children are able to see the coding process work from start to finish and dissect each level of the process on their own, making this kit come highly recommended.
Ozobot: Check the current price
3. Wonder Workshop Dash Coding Robot for Kids 6+ | Best Voice Activated
This voice-activated coding robot falls within the recommended age range of some of the other previously recommended coding products, making it best for children ages 6 and above. Completing this kit are 5 programming apps optimized to make children confident in their burgeoning programming skills.
Children will be able to see the effects of their code firsthand in a way that is extremely engaging thanks to the coding bot who comes ready to use immediately with purchase. Your child will enjoy exploring all they can make the bot do thorough the power of their code.
Wonder Workshop: Check the current price
4. Thames & Kosmos Kids First Coding | Best Kit with Model Building Exercises
Parents looking to give their kids fun and engaging coding experience without keeping them plugged in will enjoy the Thames & Kosmos kit which requires no apps, tablets, or screens. Recommended for children grades Kindergarten through second, this is a great introduction to coding for young children.
Complete with multiple adventures aligned to academic coding standards, children will get top-notch beginning instruction to coding all while building models and mouse-trap scenarios. Problem-solving firsthand, children will see the processes they are thinking through brought to life as they build and play.
Thames & Kosmos: Check the current price
5. Modular Robotics Cubelets Robot Blocks | Best Discovery Set
Branding themselves as the “smart” building blocks, these robotics cubelets are STEM-optimized. Recommended for children ages 4 and up, these blocks aim to help children develop a lifelong passion for STEM at a young age.
These cubes are ideal for parents looking for coding toys that will grow as their children grow, as their processes can be as simple or as complex as your child makes them. What’s more, there are multiple ways to play. Whether you’re looking for a purely kinesthetic experience for your child or apps for the extension, these blocks have it covered.
Modular Robotics: Check the current price
6. Kano Star Wars The Force Coding Kit | Best for Programming Skills
Star Wars fans will love the ingenuity of this coding kit. Children will be able to use The Force, swing a lightsaber and pilot an X-Wing all with the same toy, all while learning important coding techniques.
Recommended for children ages 6 and up, this unique motion sensor pairs with intuitive apps to help children work on coding skills. With such fun activities, children will enjoy living out their Jedi fantasies without ever realizing they’re learning and putting their problem-solving skills to use.
Kano: Check the current price