Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Kids First: Robot Engineer

Kids First: Robot Engineer

Fall 2016 Toys
Ages: 3 & Up
Manufacturer: Thames & Kosmos
Price: $49.95

The Omega family, mom and dad, siblings, Ty and Karlie, Huxley, the building robot, and Remus, the science bear are always ready for a day of science. The Kids First Robot Engineer Storybook finds the children ready for a day of learning robotics. Unfortunately, they are just getting started when one of their robot friends, Toro the Gardening Robot, experiences a glitch in his code and rolls away. Ty and Karlie immediately set off in search of their friend and end up in a mechanized candy factory learning about all the different types of robots used there. Readers follow along in the story and create models of each of these robots.

The illustrated story has assembly instructions built directly into it. And, as children progress through the story and the models themselves, they are introduced to a variety of basic physics and engineering concepts. As they build, they learn about gears and how combining different sizes affects speed and direction of movement. Some characters talk about pneumatic devices and others discuss programming and coding. These are just a few of the concepts that children learn about while reading the story and building the rides. And, the overall theme is quickly apparent: physics is at work everywhere.

There are ten robot designs and instructions included in the storybook; however, children can use the pieces to build whatever they want. This provides excellent long-term play and learning values as well as hours of imaginative and creative play. Some constructions may require adult assistance, but even the instructions suggest allowing children to have as much independence as possible.

The set features colorful, large, and easy-to-handle pieces that even the smallest hands can easily and successfully manipulate. And, all the pieces as well as the story/instruction booklet fit neatly into a sturdy plastic bin for storage and/or travel.

Sharon Heuscher   ©2016 Parents' Choice
Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Look for this product at:
Thames & Kosmos

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