Robots are an integral part of our lives today. They’re embedded in our phones, computers, streaming services–you name it. And while it’s fun and fantastical to think of Siri plotting a takeover, the truth is that technology benefits us in countless ways. The STEM industry has recently launched a whole host of initiatives to get youth involved in math and sciences. Computer engineering and robotics especially can always use bright, passionate minds. There are plenty of toys out there to help encourage and foster this interest in little ones that show a knack and/or an enthusiasm for the field. Below are 10 of the most demonstrably high-quality and beloved robotics toys for kids. Gear up and get ready to geek out!
Our Top 3 Picks
- Deluxe Eco Robotics
- Problem Solving Skills
- Sphero Star Wars Droid
- Reacts to Voice
- WowWee Miposaur
- Gesture Command
Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Robot Toys for Kids
When searching for a toy for your child, it’s perfectly normal to want it to be the perfect blend of educational and enjoyable. These robots are the prime examples of such as a toy. Below, we’ve outlined the categories that we looked at while compiling this list.
Toys for a 4 year old will most likely not interest a 12 year old, and so on. However, robotics is one of those things that can interest children of all ages. There are simple kits available that can suit younger children and more complex kits that can suit older children. As older children are able to voice their opinions, younger children need to be watched to garner their opinion on whether they enjoy a toy or not. Most, if not all, the robot toys on our list are sure to make your child enjoy playing and learning with their robot toy.
All children are different. They have different likes and dislikes, as well as strengths and weaknesses. Robot toy kits are a perfect way to see if your child as any desire for construction, electronic, locomotive, or anything to do with engineering. If they do, these toys can continue to grow with your child. If they don’t, then they can move onto other toys.
Ease of Use
Though a complex kit will keep an older child busy, it won’t be the same for a younger child. However, all kits should be complex enough to ensure that your child does not get bored of it easily. They should be toys that garner their attention and don’t let go.
Robots are known to encourage imaginative play and foster creativity. Your child can make up wild stories in their head while playing with their robots. This will keep them engaged and entertained while stimulating their brains.
Robots, even those for kids, can be pricey. The key is to have a budget and find a toy that suits your child’s need in said budget. There are various kits in the market at drastically different price points. By knowing your child’s interests, as well as the area in which you want to encourage your child, you’ll know the perfect robot to get your child.
How we chose the top 10 robots
Choosing the top 10 robot toys on our list was not easy. While robots are fully mechanized, our team of researchers had to focus more on the developmental appropriateness of these toys. It is not enough that they light up, move, and have a few fancy features. What is more important is the kind of developmental skill that children will be able to harness using the toy robot. This sense of developmental appropriateness is necessary to help us make sure that children will be able to derive something truly amazing from playing with these types of toys.
Additionally, we had to take a closer look at the quality workmanship of the robot. If it has very small components, we had to make sure that the intended age group is appropriate so that it won’t create any safety concerns along the way. If the product was awarded a particular recognition, then this was also considered in the final tally. Of course, we also had to read what other parents are saying. This is very important because one cannot simply trust companies to be truthful about their products.
With these, we were able to shortlist 10 of the top robot toys we are strongly positive you and your kid will love.
Robots and Children’s Development
Robots are an important part of today’s highly industrialized societies. In fact, many companies in today’s manufacturing industries such as those in the automotive and aerospace sector rely on robots to perform a variety of functions that are highly repetitive because they can be programmed to perform such operations several millions of times without tiring. Compared to human workers who may be limited by their ability to focus and concentrate on the task at hand, robots can be programmed with absolute efficiency and accuracy so that errors can be effectively reduced to near zero levels. More importantly, robots don’t get sick nor will ever complain of too much humidity or the boss making unexpected demands. Once programmed, robots can keep on doing things they have been programmed to perform indefinitely.
Because of the overriding importance of robots in today’s technology-driven economy, the advances in robotics have trickled down to toys and other playthings. In fact, many of today’s toys have some form of a programmable component that makes them robots.
Children can greatly benefit from these robot toys. For example, young children who are exposed to robot toys that play music, lights, and sound effects can have their sensory skills enhanced. Playing lights together with music or nursery rhymes can help young children expand their vocabulary and develop their language and communication skills at the same time. Pushing on the different interactive buttons can also help young children develop their sense of proprioception and spatial intelligence. This also helps enhance the young child’s sensorimotor skills, visual motor coordination, gross-motor, and fine-motor skills. Again, everything actually depends on the features that are built into the robot toy.
There are also robot-building kits much like LEGO building and construction play sets. These robot kits allow children to experiment with different configurations of building blocks. These allow children to explore the different ways in which the blocks or components can be assembled to create something new. This lays the foundation for counterfactual reasoning as well as for divergent problem-solving. Compared to convergent problem-solving where a particular problem only warrants a single solution, children operating on the principle of divergent thinking are able to think well outside the box. This simply means that given any scenario or problem, they can think of 1,001 different ways to solve the problem. This is particularly helpful in enhancing children’s ability to think logically and critically. It also lays the foundation for their predictive abilities. With divergent thinking, children are able to make more accurate predictions of what might happen should they choose a particular course of action instead of another one. This can also lay the bases for the development and enhancement of their use of the scientific process.
Robotic toys that allow children to perform a certain task can also help children understand the basic processes involved in these tasks. For example, a robotic arm that can be programmed to grasp and hold objects can teach children about the principles of hydraulics as the necessary element for moving different parts and allowing them to act in unison. This also helps teach children about how the human hand can actually perform the same task performed by the robotic arm.
There are also robot toys that can represent the child’s world in a safer, non-threatening way. This is especially helpful among toddlers and preschoolers who may still have a very limited understanding of how the real world operates. When miniature robot toys for toddlers are used, they are often played as a representation of their own world.
Of course, robot toys can be excellent instruments or tools of make-believe or pretend play. This can help in the enhancement of children’s imaginative and creative thinking while at the same time help facilitate the development of social skills. More important is the value of such playthings in the enhancement of kids’ sense of self-confidence which can then lead to the formation of a healthier self-concept and sense of self-worth.
The Bottom Line
Kids robots are one of the most popular gifts for the holiday season as well as during children’s birthdays and special occasions. However, it is very important to choose only those robots that are developmentally appropriate for the age group of your child so you can feel safe and confident that your kid’s optimum growth and development is ensured to the fullest. It is for this reason that we are optimistic you will find our list of the top 10 robot toys for kids to be highly invaluable.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Where can I buy these robots toys for my kids?
A: Most of these are available to buy on Amazon, along with a number of other online and physical stores. The best store to buy them from depends on your budget.
Q: Why aren’t all of these remote-controlled?
A: Though most of these are able to be controlled by a remote, some of them are not. The reason behind this is simply because that is how the manufacturer made them. Some of these are meant for children of a younger age who would not be able to use a remote control.
Q: Can all of these robots be used on carpeted floors?
A: Some of these run fantastically on carpeted floors. However, some of them prefer smoother finishes such as hardwood or laminate floors. To make sure which types of floor a robot suits, reviews and product descriptions of the individual products are the best places to look.
Q: Do all the robots come with phone applications?
A: Not all of the robots on our list have corresponding applications. However, we’ve tried to point out which robots have applications under each product heading.
Q: Are these robots waterproof?
A: Some of these robots are waterproof, like the Sphero Star Wars BB-8 drone. Others are not so waterproof. The way to find this out is to read product reviews and other questions/answers to find the answer.
Q: Are these robot toys educational?
A: In traditional educational senses, no. However, these robots are excellent at teaching your children coding, programming, building, imaginative play, and brain stimulation. Hence, making them a newer, more fun way of learning.
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