Bloxels lets kids design playable spaces using physical blocks on a grid—that can then be captured by a tablet device and translated into a real digital game. The creator, Pixel Press, says it's like "coding with Lego."
It's easy to see how it works on video:
I'm no child development specialist, and I'm no learnin' specialist either. I'm also no spatial reasoning specialist, as anyone who has seen me try to put a sheet on a bed would attest. But it seems like the tactile and visual element of Bloxels could help kids learn foundational data visualization skills that will presumably help them become coders in the future, as by 2025 all humans will be coders in accordance with the current trend. Also, I bet that kids would have fun seeing things they make with their hands come to life in the digital world. I mean, I'm guessing. I currently don't have kids, because I am too busy writing video game stuff all day.
The project has now been successfully funded via Kickstarter, which seems to be where you can buy it for yourself if you're keen. A set including a gameboard, 250 colored blocks, a guidebook and an existing app come together for $50.