Fun and Easy Coding For Kids with Dash, the Interactive Robot
Meet Dash, the interactive robot from Wonder Workshop that turns play time into learning with fun and easy coding for kids. As a homeschooling mom who loves to try out the latest gadgets, especially related to education, this was an exciting toy to receive in our house as we partnered with Best Buy to bring you this cool new tech toy.
Dash comes ready to use right out of the box, which is important because he definitely demands attention and the desire for children to get to know him right away. His turquoise color with orange accents works for either boys or girls and can be customized with the light color your child prefers.
The interaction with the robot begins immediately when turning him on. He makes a few sounds, turns his head back and forth, and then the lights flash and shine as he asks “How do you do?” That’s all it takes for children to become incredibly intrigued about what else he can do. As we sat at the table discussing what to do with Dash and which program to use first, we noticed that as someone mentioned his name he turned and faced them. He knows his name!
He moves on his own and explores his surroundings while blinking his eye and flashing his lights. This basic play is just the beginning. Add apps and he transforms into an amazing little robot.
Dash is designed for every age group, from five years old to infinity.
As the child learns and grows, Dash does too. The learning level and play style changes with their level of education and is enhanced by the apps used to control and interact with Dash.
There are five apps to use with Dash: Wonder, Blockly, Path, Go, and Xylo. Which app you choose is based upon your child’s age and interest level.
All of the apps are free and are available on iTunes or Google Play.
In order to control him and use the apps they are compatible with most IOS devices: iPad 3 or newer, iPad mini, iPad Air, iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, iPhone 6+, iPod Touch 5. On Android devices the apps are compatible with Nexus 7, Nexus 9, Galaxy Note 10.1 or newer, Galaxy Note Pro 12.2, Galaxy Tab 3, Galaxy Tab 4, Galaxy Tab Pro, Galaxy S, and Galaxy S4. These are currently the supported devices.
The Go app is for all ages and is the first stage in getting to know Dash. Give him a new name, change his lights, sounds, and colors with this app designed for learning the basics of robotics.
The Wonder app is for ages eight and older. Using a picture-based coding language built for kids, Dash becomes a robot pet, their friend, or just programs Dash for specific behaviors. This is a delightful program for robotics and is the best place to start with learning how Dash works beyond the basics.
The Blockly app is for ages eight and older. Blockly introduces easy coding for kids through projects and puzzles. Utilizing the code developed by children, code camp comes into your house through every interaction with the Blockly app and Dash.
The Path app is for all ages. Before children can even read, they begin with the fundamentals of robotics and coding. Simply draw a path on their tablet or smartphone and take Dash on an adventure through your house.
The Xylo app is for all ages and incorporates music into play. The Xylophone accessory add on kit is needed to partner with this app. Even though this was not supplied with our Dash unit, based upon the other apps and experience using him, this will no doubt be a fun way to play music and help encourage your budding musician.
What’s Included In The Box:
- USB charging cord
- Two building brick connectors
- Getting started guide
Books and instruction manuals do not come with Dash. All learning and information takes place within the app.
To get started with Dash simply open the box, pull him out, turn him on, download an app, plug him in for 20 minutes to run an update, and you are off and running. He was used quite a bit during the first use. We let him sit overnight to charge and then he ran for approximately two hours of play time, based upon our use. Everything you need is included in the box, except for the standard USB wall charger needed to connect the charging cable.
Dash never needs to have batteries replaced.
The two building brick connectors fit on either side of Dash’s face or on his feet. They can be configured any way you desire and works seamlessly with LEGO bricks.
Adding your child’s favorite LEGO character or building a custom creation brings even more excitement with Dash and provides endless hours of fun.
Wonder Workshop makes Dash and Dot, a smaller version. Check out the links below for more information on purchasing Dash at Best Buy. Dash retails for $149.99.
Dash at Best Buy | @BestBuy | @WonderWorkshop | #TechToys
By combining robotics, easy programming for kids, silly noises, and LEGO bricks you create the ultimate play toy designed for hours of fun where the only limits are imagination.
Disclosure: The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.