Kids + Programming Fundamentals = Robot Turtles Board Game

We are board game people.

I wanted my kids to love board games as much as I do which meant I spent a ton of time playing mind-numbing games of chance.

I swear if I hit that REALLY long chute one more time…

Robot Turtles Board Game featured on Kids Activities Blog

I think that is one of the reasons why I got so excited about a new game that was launched on Kickstarter today.  I had the pleasure of speaking to Dan Shapiro last week about the game and why he created Robot Turtles.

Dan has twin 4 year olds which means {like me} that he has played more than his fair share of Candyland.  He thought about his passion for computer programming and figured that he could create a game for children that didn’t rely on chance.  His idea was to teach kids programming fundamentals through play.

Y’all know how much we love teaching through play!

Robot Turtles Board Game

That is how Robot Turtles were born.  It is a simple game for kids ages 3-8 that takes seconds to learn, minutes to play, and will keep them learning for hours.  “It sneakily teaches programming fundamentals.”

The game is a simple grid and each player has a super cute robot turtle {with a laser} and a series of cards that allow the turtle to move across the board toward the robot jewels.

Young players will play their cards and a parent will move the turtle accordingly, older players can play one card at a time and move their own turtle.   As the kids get better, they can program out the entire path to the robot jewels.  There are un-lockable functions like walls, lasers, and the function frog.  Kids also can debug their commands if they don’t go quite as planned.

This could have been an app.  When Dan was asked why he chose a board game over an app. he said, “I don’t know about you, but I don’t have any trouble getting my kids to stare at a screen.  When we open the Robot Turtles box, their faces light up.  We sit down and the next hour is full of ah-ha, and wow, and zzzz.”

I think he is onto something!

OK, so the cool thing is that this is a Kickstarter project.  You can be one of a few in the world to get the Robot Turtles board game.  Oh, and if you are thinking about doing a little holiday shopping…this is a toy that every 3-8 year old in the world DOESN’T have right now.

I am picking up one for my nephew for Christmas.

So, go!  Get one or two.  It is something that you can play with them that won’t cause you to need a mental health day after the game.


  1. I will definitely get one. I strongly want my son to learn to create, rather than just be a passive user of his technology. I think compuring skills are fundamental to society’s future, and I don’t mean how to format a word document.

  2. This looks like such fun learning! I wish I had this game a few years ago. My son has been begging to program a robot. He begins his Mindstorm Lego Robotics team this Saturday.

    I would like to get this game so we can play as family, including my younger daughter.

  3. I think there is an option I saw on the Kickstarter to pay extra for an out-of-US delivery. Looks like great fun!

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