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Fisher-Price's caterpillar bot will teach kids how to code

Each block is like a line of code.
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A grinning caterpillar zooms around the table with blinking lights. Its bright purple eyes light up as it takes a moment to process the commands attached as various segments behind its head. Designed for preschoolers, Fisher-Price's Code-a-Pillar is a caterpillar-shaped toy that comes with a motorized head and eight segments that can be strung in a sequence like a line of code to form the rest of its body. Each segment is code for the toy to go straight, turn left or right and stop to play a song for your child.

Gallery: Fisher Price Think and Leaen Code-A-Pillar hands-on | 12 Photos

Code-A-Pillar is part of the Fisher-Price's Think & Learn series that's built to inspire critical thinking and problem solving skills in three to eight-year-olds who could potentially be future coders. At a time when AI-heavy smart toys are flying off the shelves, the toymaker seems to have hit the mark with its easy to use, code-teaching caterpillar. There are no screens and so, there's no swiping involved. A simple start button tells the toy it's time to play. The $50 toy will be available in June this year for parents who want to instill the basics of coding in their little ones.

Daniel Cooper contributed to this report.

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Mona is an arts and culture journalist with a focus on technology. Before moving to New York City for a masters program at Columbia Journalism School, she was the associate editor of Platform magazine in Delhi, India. She has covered dance music extensively and is a proponent of drug policy reform. On weekends, when she’s not watching post-apocalyptic films, she spends hours contemplating life as a Buddhist.
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