kids

Google Doodle marks 50 years of teaching kids to code

Google Doodle marks 50 years of teaching kids to code

Teaching kids to code at an early age might be a hot and sometimes hotly debated topic these days, but as early as the 60s, there were already some computer scientists and educators blazing that trail. Sure, it may not have the sophisticated robotics or even fancy graphics of today’s tools, but the Logo programming language has been the first blush with programming of those who would eventually run Silicon Valley and, by extension, the world. Now Google and MIT celebrate 50 years of Logo with the first ever coding Google Doodle. Targeted at the young and young of heart, of course.

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NETGEAR Wi-Fi products get Circle with Disney parental control

NETGEAR Wi-Fi products get Circle with Disney parental control

Most mobile devices and operating systems these days include some form of parental control. Sooner or later, however, this per-device system becomes inconvenient and sometimes even ineffective. The best way to monitor, check, and curb Internet use is really at the source, which, in the case of a home network, is often the router. That is why NETGEAR and Circle Media have teamed up to install the Circle with Disney parental control system directly on NETGEAR’s Wi-Fi systems and routers.

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Animoodle plushies spark creativity by mixing up parts

Animoodle plushies spark creativity by mixing up parts

Kids these days are exposed to technology at very early ages. On the one hand, it’s good that they become immediately familiar with the technology that will define their future. On the other hand, they are trained early on to become consumers when they should be learning to become creators instead. Enter Animoodles, a collection of plush toys from the collective minds and skills of Disney, Apple, and Pixar veterans that aim to inspire imagination, creativity, and fun all at the same time. How? By letting kids, and grown-ups, mix and match body parts.

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YouTube Kids adds personalized profiles, more controls

YouTube Kids adds personalized profiles, more controls

Kids these days are getting more and more tech-savvy and, while there’s still some debate on whether they should be exposed to mobile devices and the Internet at that early age, it is an inevitable fact of life. YouTube Kids takes a proactive approach to help parents control the kind of content their children get exposed to right from the very start. With the latest update to the app, it gives parents even more control while also giving kids a little bit of personal space to call their own.

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Google Assistant now plays games, trivia for kids

Google Assistant now plays games, trivia for kids

A lot of the new toys that Google recently announced are designed for the big kids, but that doesn’t mean the tech giant has nothing for the little ones. With the Google Home, in original, Mini, and Max sizes, poised to become a fixture in living rooms, it’s only fitting that Google also embrace the little tykes that will inhabit those places as well. Google Assistant, both on that speaker as well as on your smartphone, can now entertain as well as educate kids with over 50 games, activities, and stories designed to be completely safe for a younger audience.

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VTech KidiBuzz Smart Device is an ugly Android phone for young kids

VTech KidiBuzz Smart Device is an ugly Android phone for young kids

VTech, maker of electronic devices for kids, has launched a chunky, ugly phone called the KidiBuzz 'Smart Device.' KidiBuzz has the general size and shape of a phone, though it is considerably thicker and sports wide bezels. The phone has a distinct Samsung flavor to its design and, most importantly, it runs Android, making it possible to download ordinary Android apps.

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Seedling’s Parker teddy bear uses AR to teach kids caregiving

Seedling’s Parker teddy bear uses AR to teach kids caregiving

Your teddy bear doesn't need to be a (sometimes freaky) robot to be cool and hi-tech. It just needs an iPad or an iPhone. And maybe some imagination. Well, actually, you and your kid will need those if you want to fully experience what Parker has a to offer. A traditional teddy bear toy in all but one sense, Seedling wants kids to enjoy a timeless classic toy while sprinkling some digital wizardry using the magic of augmented reality.

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Google Family Link now open to all parents in the US

Google Family Link now open to all parents in the US

Kids these days are obviously a lot more tech savvy than their parents were at their age. Sooner or later, you will eventually give in and get your offspring his or her own mobile device, which is usually a tablet, and is usually an Android tablet. In an effort to make Android a more suitable digital playground for the young, Google is finally opening up its Family Link doors in the US, letting parents exercise control over when and what their kids enjoy on their screens.

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Pokemon Playhouse: Gotta start ‘em young

Pokemon Playhouse: Gotta start ‘em young

Although initially intended for young gamers, Pokemon quickly became a grownup’s playground. Especially with “spinoffs” like Pokemon GO. In trying to bring the game back to its roots, Pokemon Company might have gotten carried away. The latest addition to its line of mobile games, Pokemon Playhouse is meant for those too young to play the actual video games but would still enjoy, but definitely not all, of the cute critters and maybe learn a thing or two about raising pets and responsibility.

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Sony KOOV robotics kit finally out a year later, on Indiegogo

Sony KOOV robotics kit finally out a year later, on Indiegogo

Sony has a rather strange relationship with consumer robotics lately. It's definitely no stranger to them, having had at least two in the past. Now it is taking a more educational spin to these robots, but it isn't going directly to the market. Toio, revealed last week, is on Sony's internal "First Flight" crowdfunding platform. And now the KOOV coding and robotics kit has made its way to Indiegogo as well, finally making a real public appearance a year after Sony was supposed to launch it.

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Sony Toio is a mashup of tiny cube robots and game consoles

Sony Toio is a mashup of tiny cube robots and game consoles

Sony might not be a name you'd immediately associate with robotic toys, but it does, or rather did, have a few under its name, from the dog-like Aibo to the the "dancing" Rolly to, more recently, the KOOV robotics kit. It isn't done yet, however, and a Toio product may be just over the horizon. Aimed at very young learners, Toio mixes papercraft, tiny rolling robot cubes, and a system that resembles a gaming console, complete with controllers and even cartridges.

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Kiddo is a tracker that makes healthy living fun for kids

Kiddo is a tracker that makes healthy living fun for kids

For the past two years or so, there has been a surge in interest in fitness trackers and wearables. It seems that more and more people are becoming health conscious. But a healthy lifestyle isn't just for adults and big kids. Even, and perhaps more especially, the actual kids need to start living healthy at an early age. While there might be tablets for kids and educational toys for kids, there are few devices that put their health front and center. That's what Kiddo is setting out to do. Not only does it help parent keep an eye on their kid's health, it can also encourage kids themselves to be active and healthy.

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