The wooden shape toy puzzle is a childhood classic, teaching spatial awareness and improving a youngling's dexterity at the same time. But what if a similar toy could teach other skills too? Could a wooden toy ever teach a child the principles of say, coding?
That's the idea behind the Primo. Though its colourful wooden blocks look much like other puzzle games for children, it's designed to teach children as young as four years old the basic principles of coding logic in a tactile, screen-free way. Tasking children with creating sequences and queues (the very building blocks of a computer algorithm), it's an early bit of training in a skillset set to become increasingly valuable as the next generation comes to adulthood, without the fruitless prospect of putting a toddler in front of a command line interface.
As a child becomes more comfortable with the kit, it can also be used with an included robot. "Cubetto", as it's named, can be directed around using the puzzle block, with each placed piece triggering a specific movement from the wirelessly-paired robot.
Going on sale next summer, you can pre-order one now for £160. [Primo]