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Digital Cameras for Kids-A Perfect Present for 3-6 Year Olds

Updated on June 27, 2013
My five year old nephew Alois with his camera.
My five year old nephew Alois with his camera. | Source

Should You Buy a Child a Digital Camera?

It might seem a little bit outrageous to buy 5 year old kids digital cameras. However, it is only one of the many electronic toys now available even for toddlers.

I have to say buying a camera for my 4 year old nephew appealed to me a lot more than other electronic toys, even a leapfrog pad. He had already been asking his parents for their iPhones so he could take his own photos, and I thought that having his own camera would make him feel really important.

Presumably taking pictures also helps kids develop their powers of observation and their desire to go out and explore the outside world. I have to say that my nephew is very proud of his photo collection which he's built up over a short time, and spends some time looking through them and remembering when he took them.

The Vtech Kidizoom Camera

The Good Points

When it came time to buying the camera I chose a vtech kidizoom spin and smile. I think I liked the additional functions it offered, the extra frames and distortions you can add to the pictures. I (and my nephew too) am rather pleased with it, what I really like about it:

  • It is very easy for small hands to hold securely, the big plastic handles on the side work well
  • The buttons for taking pictures are easily accessible, as are the buttons for the different functions. It is easy for children to figure out how to use it.
  • The extra functions are a lot of fun.
  • It can also be used to recored movies and sound


The Bad Points

  • The noises it makes (when pressing any button!) are very annoying
  • The camera is sold without an SSD card, with very limited memory. You really need to buy a memory card, or it will fill up very quickly
  • The quality of pictures it takes is not great, although that is really to be expected of a kiddie camera. But for older children who really care about photography you might be better off spending the money on a cheap normal digital camera.

Overall my 4 year old nephew is very pleased with this. I suspect it is the most successful present I have ever given him (and I really do try to please him every time!). My only issue is that the camera is advertised as being suitable for 3-8 year olds. Whereas I think it is great for preschoolers, I suspect 7 or 8 year olds might find it rather childish and be disappointed by the quality of photos it takes.

The young photographer studying the images he took with intense concentration.
The young photographer studying the images he took with intense concentration. | Source

What do Photos Taken with the Kidizoom Camera Look Like?

Depending on the exact model the Vtech cameras take pictures of 1.3-2 megapixels. Obviously this is puny compared to modern cameras, although remember that a few years ago this was standard in iPhone cameras, and nobody complained.

I have to say that the pictures taken outside, in high light conditions come out a lot better than those taken indoors.

On the other hand, it is also worth noting that small kids are impatient and will often snap a picture before bothering to have the object in focus. So a lot of the images aren't great because of the photographer, not the equipment.

Anyway below is a sample of the piccies taken with the Vtech Kidizoom digital camera.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
The friendly donkey who lives nearbyThe construction of the playhouse commemorated
The friendly donkey who lives nearby
The friendly donkey who lives nearby | Source
The construction of the playhouse commemorated
The construction of the playhouse commemorated | Source

Do you think digital cameras make good gifts for kids

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Frames and Special Effects

Apart from just taking photos and movies, my nephew's camera allows him to add special frames and "effects" to the photos.

These work best done on images of people and can generate an impressive amount of hilarity in the young ones and their friends. Although I must admit it can take a while before the younger ones grasp that it is the camera itself that introduces the distortions, and that they don't have to twist their faces into weird contortions while the photos are being taken.

You can admire the effects of a few of the "special functions" below.

Click thumbnail to view full-size

A Few Other Digital Cameras for Kids

Of course Vtech are not the only company that produces cameras for children.

Of particular interest is the LEGO camera. It just looks so cool! Apparently it cannot be taken apart, although children can add extra lego bricks to it, to incorporate it in their builds, or to decorate it.

One notable advantage of this camera is that its batteries can be recharged through its USB port. The Vtech camera works on 4 AA batteries, although you can of course use rechargeable batteries with it.

On thing to note is that recently the on-board memory has been drastically decreased, so the camera can only hold 40 photos now.

The Fisher-Price camera includes a lens that can be spun 180o, allowing self portraits. It also allows for a lot of in-camera effects, as well as more possibilities if you download their free software, which only works with a PC, not a Mac.

The camera again comes without an SD card. Again, although it is usable without it, it is definitely convenient to be able to store a larger number of photos. A memory card is especially useful for videos, since they create much larger files.

Comments

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    • Lukespook profile image

      Lucas Uren 4 years ago from Japan

      Very nice idea for kids birthdays. My kids love having their picture taken.

    • kthix10 profile image

      kthix10 4 years ago from IL

      Great Hub, this is exactly the type of thing I will be getting my 4 year old for his next birthday. He keeps trying to steal my good camera.

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