Win a free Bitsbox: teaching programming as a second language

 Aspire Accelerator Program is AT&T’s signature philanthropic initiative focused on education and student success in school and they have chosen BitsBox as only one of 6 businesses for that program. We’re excited to give away one free Bitsbox so your little future programmer can check it out (see more info at the bottom of the post).

Bitsbox_ProductShotBitsbox teaches kids as young as six to code their own apps with a box of inspiration that comes in the mail every month. Bitsbox kids use real code to make anything from ninja driving games to magical unicorn simulators, and their apps work on any smart phone or tablet. Bitsbox believes that not all screen time is created equal and that the best apps for kids are the ones they make themselves. In today’s world, it’s never too early for kids to learn coding. Coding is a language (best taught like a 2nd language) and repetition is key in learning a new language which is why the monthly subscription is a great option!

When your kids create a coding account, they get a virtual tablet for your son or daughter (or niece or nephew or student or neighbor). Kids learn by copying code into a little text editor next to their tablet, which in turn runs their new apps.

Once they’re written, Bitsbox apps run on most any mobile device. They can be shared via an email, text message, QR code, or a web link. Changes to the program go to your device in real time. You can even play multiplayer games across screens.

What programming language are they learning?
Your kids are learning to program using Javascript/HTML5.  Why Javascript? Because it’s arguably the most popular computer language around. Javascript is neat because it’s the language of the web. Facebook, Google, Pandora, and Twitter are all written in Javascript (at least partially). Javascript is also great because it’s a close cousin to C, C++, Objective C, and Java, which are Big Important Languages used by Serious People Doing Serious Programming.

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Can my kid get this in school?
They’ve sent free coding kits to 7,000 classrooms and send to teachers upon request.  Bitsbox also works with the Temple Grandin School in Boulder – piloted a classroom program last year.

What ages is this good for?
The company recommends ages 6 through 12 – but honestly my 13 and 15 year old boy and girl really enjoyed it! They both found it fun and educational.

monstermayhemI love the idea, how much does it cost?
Pricing for monthly boxes ranges from $20/40/month – individuals and schools. Schools receive 50% off.

Bonus fun in each box:
As a bonus in each box, the kids will receive a toy as well – each box has a theme and the toy plays on that theme. For example, in the travel themed boxBon Voyage, kids received a paint-your-own postcard kit. The toy is always something interactive. The intent behind the toy (and stickers, and tattoos) is to provide extra excitement for the “present in the mail” concept.

More Information:
Bitsbox website
Bitsbox FAQ

How to win:

Just leave a comment below and let us know what age your little programmer is and why you think they’d love to receive the free Bitsbox!

Winner will be selected in a random drawing. Entries accepted until Wednesday, August 20th at noon MDT. Winner will be notified via the email address you share and have 48 hours to reply or we select a new winner.

Disclaimer:
Denver Parent may have received compensation for this post. Visit our disclosure page for more information.

Comments

  1. Wow! I love this idea and would love to get my son involved in a project such as this as opposed to mindless game playing when he is on an electronic device. He aspires to be a skylander/pokemon character designer and I think he would love to receive a special package each month with instructions on creating characters for apps!

  2. Tina Sanders Hill says:

    Oh I love this idea! My little programmer is 13 but I also volunteer teach STEM related activities with kids from 9 years of age and up! This would make a great addition!

  3. My kids would love this! I got the free version for my school library and they loved testing it out for me.

  4. Sarah Vickers says:

    My 12 year old would love this! He built his own computer, but he hasn’t done much programming, this would be perfect!

  5. Rhiannon Gallagher says:

    My kid has decided he’s a programmer/inventor. Which is fine with us – there are plenty of test-takers in the world, but we need good inventors.

  6. My 8year old wants to be an inventor and programmer and has the aptittude for it, plus he wants to be rich andI I have no doubt about his math and science skills. He’s bilingual and loves reading, although he does not want to read in Spanish at all :(. Gracias!

  7. I have two little programmers — ages 7 and 9. They would love this because anything to do with computers and programming interests them. We’ve been doing some Hour of Code activities together, and they amaze me with how they understand what to do. Looking forward to a BitsBox in the mail would be super exciting!

  8. My son is 9 and my daughter is 7. They would love this because they have begun to learn coding in school and both enjoy it. It is one of the few things they home and want to do more of. Thanks so much

  9. This is awesome! I haven’t seen it before! My little programmer is 8. She would love this because she’s just starting to learn coding and this looks like a great way to do it!

  10. I have a 7 yr old I know would love this but I could totally see my 12 year old checking it out too