Tag: creativity

Youth Digital® Named Winner of the Parents’ Choice® Gold Award for the Second Year in a Row and 12 year old Student Wins 2016 STEM Video Game Challenge

Youth Digital® Named Winner of the Parents’ Choice® Gold Award for the Second Year in a Row and 12 year old Student Wins 2016 STEM Video Game Challenge

Youth Digital Inc., a leading technology education organization for youth ages 8-14 that brought you Mod Design 1, Learn to Code with Minecraft® and 3D Game Development 1, Learn to Code C# in Unity®, is proud to be named winner of the Parents’ Choice Gold Award for the second year in a row.

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The winning course, 3D Character Animation 1, is another installment in Youth Digital’s series of courses around Minecraft®. Emily Crawford, reviewer for Parents’ Choice® , writes, “We have been astonished by Youth Digital’s level of commitment to its students; this, above even the brilliantly-written course material, is the company’s greatest asset…[this] more than justifies the $250 price tag.”

Continuing the winning streak, Youth Digital would like to congratulate student Ronan Boyarksi, age 12, for winning the 2016 STEM Video Game Challenge! Ronan’s game, Hungry Black Hole, won the Open Platform Middle School category. Read more about Ronan’s win at the STEM Challenge website.

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“We are extremely proud of Ronan,” says Justin Richards, CEO and Founder of Youth Digital® . “His commitment, appetite for learning, and creativity paid off here. Ronan is a shining example of what we at Youth Digital believe at our core: teaching kids how to create with technology leads to a world of opportunities.”

Youth Digital is offering exclusive deals on its award winning courses throughout the 2016 Holiday season and beyond.

To learn more about Youth Digital and its unique approach to technology education, please visit http://www.youthdigital.com.

About Youth Digital
Youth Digital® offers a compelling mix of online courses that teach kids the critical technology concepts and skills that they will need to be successful in today’s digital world. With courses designed to be fun, interactive, and rewarding, kids ages 8 to 14 become digital creators through their breakthrough learning platform and cutting-edge curriculum. Students watch video tutorials, respond to questions, earn badges, complete interactive quizzes, and attempt challenging assignments as they step toward mastering key technology skills and professional-level software.

Founded in 2010 and based in the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina, Youth Digital is committed to making technology education accessible to kids globally. Since its inception, the company has reached more than 100,000 students through its popular summer camp programs and expanding portfolio of introductory and advanced online courses. Today, students from more than 100 countries are enrolled in Youth Digital’s online courses in Java programming, game development, mobile app design, 3D printing, 3D animation, and more.

About Parents’Choice®
Parents’ Choice Foundation, established in 1978 as a 501c3, is the nation’s oldest nonprofit guide to quality children’s media and toys. Best known for the Parents’ Choice Awards® program, the Parents’ Choice Award Seals are the Foundation’s internationally recognized and respected icons of quality. The Parents’ Choice core team is a small group of talented and fun-loving alphabetically sorted professionals: Claire S. Green, Jackie Yau, and Keri Zeiler. The Parents’ Choice Award judges are experts in areas of industry and interest, from dinosaurs to digital media and from mathematics to making mayhem. The Parents’ Choice Awards committee members hail from families across the country.

5 Interactive Events for Creative Kids

5 Interactive Events for Creative Kids

Creative kids are tough to keep engaged– they’re always on to the next thing! This can be a challenge for many parents who want to fill their students’ lives outside of school with relevant, educational activities.

Beyond your kid’s regular extracurriculars, contests and conferences are a great way to explore your kids’ interests! If you missed our post on STEAM contests for kids, check it out here. Today, we’ll cover six events that make a great enrichment activity for creative kids.

1. LEGO Kids Fest

What? LEGO Kids Fest is a 3-day event filled with fun interactive, creative and educational activities for the whole family. It’s a hands-on event where kids of all ages can make awesome creations with LEGOs and participate in other activities like rock climbing, art projects, and feats of engineering.

Who? LEGO Kids Fest is great for kids and families of all ages!

Where? When? The Fest travels around North America each year. Check their schedule to see when it stops in a city near you.

Why kids will love it: LEGO Kids Fest brings a hands-on approach to creating creators. Through the various activities offered at the Fest, each kid is sure to create something awesome during the event.

2. Young Innovators Fair

What? The Young Innovators Fair is an event that brings science, technology, engineering, and math to the forefront for kids. The Fair offers ten distinct Innovation Worlds focused on themes like robots and coding, with a variety of exhibits, activities, and experiments for kids.

Who? Young innovators ages K-12 are encouraged to attend!

Where? When? The Young Innovators Fair just passed but stay tuned to their website to see when the next event will happen!

Why kids will love it: With over 40 exhibits and attractions, kids are sure to find an activity that appeals to their interests. From launching their own rocket to learning about dinosaurs, there’s something for everyone!

3. Maker Faire

What? Also known as the Greatest Show (& Tell) on Earth, Maker Faire is part science fair, part county fair, and part something entirely new! According to their website, Maker Faire is a family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity, and resourcefulness.

Who? Maker Faire gives people of all ages a chance to be makers of art, technology, or whatever sparks their interest. They also sponsor the Young Makers program, which gives kids ages 8 to 18 a space to be makers in their own communities.

Where? When? Started in 2006 in San Francisco, Maker Faire has quickly become a national phenomenon, with approximately 150 Faires all over the country last year! Find an upcoming fair near you here.

Why kids will love it: At the 10th Annual Maker Faire, there were ten workshops designed specifically for kids, including a chance for kids to create their own electronic circuit, as well as a station for kids to try their hand at woodworking. Each Maker Faire offers a new, unique experience to inspire kids and adults alike to become Makers.

4. Kids Hack Day

What? Kids Hack Day is a global series of events that give kids the chance to be creative and innovative as they invent new technologies. It’s a one-day event where kids come together to hack and make new uses of everyday items.

Who? Kids of all ages!

Where? When? Kids Hack Day has held events all over the world, from San Francisco to Sydney! The next one is happening in Sweden and you can check out their website for upcoming events.

Why kids will love it: Kids Hack Day encourages kids to think differently about the uses of items they encounter every day. It’s a one-of-a-kind experience for kids globally!

5. USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo

What? The USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo is a national science fair that aims to put the spotlight on STEM subjects. At this free event, over 1,000 STEM organizations will present hands-on science and engineering activities for people of all ages.

Who? All ages!

Where? When? The Expo will take place on April 16-17, 2016, in Washington, D.C. Find out all you need to know about attending here!

Why kids will love it: As one of the largest STEM events in the country, the USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo, is a dream come true for creative kids. It’ll take the two full days to experience all of the activities and exhibits available for kids, so plan accordingly!

Events and fairs are a great way to encourage kids’ creativity and empower them to become creators. Any of these events is sure to be a great experience for the whole family!

Game Design 101: A Guide for Parents

Game Design 101

Perhaps you grew up playing Zelda, or maybe you look on with confusion as your kid plays Minecraft. If you’re a parent of a kid today, though, you’re likely quite familiar with the world of video games. Defined as an electronic game that involves human interaction with a user interface that creates visuals on a screen such as a TV or computer monitor, video games are one of the most popular entertainment choices for kids today. According to a study by NPD, video games are now more popular than ever with kids, with 91% of kids playing video games.

From MMORPGs to sports games, there are dozens of different types of games, which appeal to players who enjoy different aspects of gameplay, such as strategy, competition, design, or adventure. Regardless of your kid’s chosen genre of game, many young gamers consider game design as their dream career path. So what is it about game design that is so appealing to kids? Today we’ll take a look at the process of designing a video game and explore why so many kids want to pursue it. Continue reading “Game Design 101: A Guide for Parents”

What Do Kids Learn When They Play Minecraft?

What do Kids Learn in MinecraftAt first glance, Minecraft may look like any other video game: a fantasy world where players gather resources, battle obstacles, and try to stay alive. But the sandbox nature of the game actually creates a learning experience for kids where they gain valuable skills that are applicable to real life through gameplay.

So what exactly are kids learning as they play Minecraft? There must be a reason that it’s been incorporated into classrooms and homeschool curriculum, after all! Here are five things that kids learn when they play Minecraft.
Continue reading “What Do Kids Learn When They Play Minecraft?”

5 Interactive Events for Creative Kids

shutterstock_351374228Creative kids are tough to keep engaged– they’re always on to the next thing! This can be a challenge for many parents who want to fill their students’ lives outside of school with relevant, educational activities.

Beyond your kid’s regular extracurriculars, contests and conferences are a great way to explore your kids’ interests! If you missed our post on STEAM contests for kids, check it out here. Today, we’ll cover six events that make a great enrichment activity for creative kids. Continue reading “5 Interactive Events for Creative Kids”

5 Ways to Celebrate Creativity This Holiday Season

shutterstock_340151969The kids are out of school, parents have time off from work, and everyone’s getting together to celebrate. That makes the holiday season a great time to encourage creativity with your kids, as there is plenty of time outside the classroom for kids to embrace their creative side.

Since creativity is something that needs to be nurtured and encouraged– even celebrated! — we’ve compiled a list of ways you can do exactly that this holiday season. Continue reading “5 Ways to Celebrate Creativity This Holiday Season”

Animation: Past, Present, and Future

nobbie animationYou know them, you love them: animated movies! With many of the top-grossing movies in recent years being animated films, this art form is more popular than ever. But how did we get from hand-drawn animated shorts to the full-CGI budget behemoths we have today? Let’s explore how animation has evolved over the years and see where it’s going to go next! Continue reading “Animation: Past, Present, and Future”

An Introduction to the Design Process: Kid Edition

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Design thinking is generally defined as the process through which designers and engineers create something new. It’s not just for professionals, though; you’re using design thinking whenever you find a new way to solve a problem.
Parents can give their kids a head start by teaching them the design process.  Once kids have mastered the steps, there are plenty of activities that allow kids to practice the process. You may be surprised to find how many projects can be solved using the design process! From hands-on craft projects to digital creations, kids can apply design thinking in many different arenas of their lives. Continue reading “An Introduction to the Design Process: Kid Edition”

SPARKCon 2015 Wrap-Up

The Youth Digital team recently attended SPARKCon 2015, Raleigh’s annual festival of creativity. It was a blast! We love being a part of anything that celebrates creativity and innovation. SPARKCon was an exciting chance for kids from all over our home state of North Carolina to create whatever they could imagine, from art to music to Minecraft mods.sparkcon-2015

Continue reading “SPARKCon 2015 Wrap-Up”