Could someone learn to code before they can even read or write?
Definitely, if Primo will have its way with preschool kids. Primo, at first glance, just looks like an ordinary wooden toy set that is commonly seen in many preschool centers. But, Primo is actually a wooden block-based visual ?robotics kit? that teaches very young kids how to learn programming or coding.
make it do things in our gadgets. Tech experts often liken this ?user-knowledge? to learning how to speak a certain language but being ignorant in writing and reading the said language.
And as much as it is difficult to teach ?older’ people on the skills of coding, the people behind Primo believes that it is quite easy to introduce programming and coding concepts to very young children.
To teach a child as young as 3 years old the basic concepts of coding, the Primo toy is composed of a Cubetto, a small motorized car or cube (depending on the ?edition? of the toy set) that is connected wirelessly to a wooden board that contains several slots. The wooden board functions as a coding interface which can be controlled by the preschool children by placing color coded blocks ? which in this case are the instructional codes ? into the slots in the wooden board.
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Video: Primo : Start them Early Toy Teaches Programming Skills …. (MyMail Online News / YouTube)
When the color coded blocks have been put in the right places, a red button on the wooden board activates the car or cube and can be ?commanded? or programmed to follow certain directions ? left, forward, right or a specific function (using a function block) . The coding board features a separate area where the children can ?save? a code sequence that they can activate at any given time, by using the function block. This function block, when placed on the main code area, repeats the ?saved’ code in the function block.
The Primo website plainly explains this in a more child-friendly language – ? Primo is a toy for children, it is composed by a board, a car and a set of instruction-blocks all made out of wood. By placing the instructions on the board and pressing the red button, the car starts to execute the commands. The purpose of this toy is to teach the high-level abstraction of programming as a sequence of instructions at very young children (five and six years old were able to use it). They are in fact controlling a “machine” by giving it a set of instructions in order to solve levels. The purpose of the game is indeed to get the car home avoiding physical obstacles on the floor.?
Primo started as a Kickstarter funded project that successfully hit its target funding and is currently commercially available for US$ 170.00 online.
Photo Sources: http://matlo.me/primo