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The Ultimate Guide to Robotics for Kids

What Is Robotics?


Robotics is an interdisciplinary branch of both computer science and engineering that deals with the design, construction, operation, and application of robots. Robotics utilizes concepts from science, engineering, and technology. Often when people hear the term robotics they think of robots from science fiction movies that are being created to take over the world. Thankfully, the field of robotics is actually focused on supporting humans and finding ways to make their lives easier and more accessible. A lot of the commonly known applications of robotics are used in manufacturing and industrial work. But robotics is also commonly utilized in fields like health care, agriculture, entertainment, security, and more!


What Age Should Kids Start Robotics?


When your child is around 8 years old you should start considering introducing them to robotics! By this age they will have started developing the skills that they’ll utilize in robotics such as problem solving. Between second and third grade is a great time to introduce this topic because their minds are still very pliable. At this age they are soaking up all of the information around them like a sponge so they are really able to listen and learn the foundations of robotics. Obviously robotics work at this age is not the same as what a high school student or adult would work on, but the fundamentals are still the same! And learning the fundamentals at a young age will set them up for success when they’re older and working on more advanced concepts. If you have a child that wants to get into robotics but they’re older, don’t worry! Getting started young is not a requirement for success in robotics. No matter how old your child is, with passion and dedication they can excel at robotics!


How Do I Know If My Child Will Be Interested In Robotics?


Do you want to get your child involved in robotics but want to know what signs to look for? These are some good indicators to look out for to determine if your child would enjoy robotics. But remember, if you want to get your child involved with robotics but they don’t match all of the criteria below, that’s okay! There’s always a chance that once your child gets involved with robotics, new talents and passions will come to light! Consider these questions if you want to know if your child will have a knack for robotics:


  • Have easily sparked curiosity that they follow through with

  • Are interested in understanding how and why things work

  • Enjoy using new technology and gadgets

  • Have a knack for or interest in math, science, and technology

  • Get involved in problem solving tech issues at home

  • Have strong problem solving skills


These are just some of the questions to ask if you think your child might be well suited for robotics. But again, these aren’t required to get started! Perseverance and passion will also go a long way!


How Can We Incorporate Robotics At Home?


There are a variety of ways to introduce your child to robotics at home. The most important part of this is to foster scientific thinking and curiosity. Keep in mind related disciplines such as coding, engineering, science, math, and technology when looking for activities or toys. Here is a short list of some of the MANY awesome options for introducing robotics into your home!


Toys


STEM Kits


Online Programs


We’ve mentioned some great toys, programs, and kits for introducing robotics to your child, but this is by no means an exhaustive list! There are hundreds of other options out there and none of the items above are necessary to introduce your child to robotics and spark their passion!


Where Can I Find Robotics Programs Near Me?


STEM is a rapidly growing field of study and becoming very popular among children’s and educational organizations. Some great places to look are non-profits, local libraries, as well as private educational organizations. But if you’re located in South Jersey then you’re in luck! The Police Activities League of Egg Harbor Township and Atlantic County offers a variety of robotics activities throughout the year including our competitive robotics team, our smart car/robot workshop, and GoBilda robotics workshop and summer camp. We also offer other non-robotics based STEM summer camps for children in 1st through 12th grade! If you’re interested in learning more about our STEM programs and summer camps, get in touch with us!


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