Machine Learning for Kids Cover

Machine Learning for Kids

A Project-Based Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
by Dale Lane
February 2021, 288 pp

Look Inside!

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Check out the book's companion website.

AI Made Easy with 13 Projects

Machine learning (also known as ML) is one of the building blocks of AI, or artificial intelligence. AI is based on the idea that computers can learn on their own, with your help.

Machine Learning for Kids will introduce you to machine learning, painlessly. With this book and its free, Scratch-based companion website, you’ll see how easy it is to add machine learning to your own projects. You don’t even need to know how to code!

Step by easy step, you’ll discover how machine learning systems can be taught to recognize text, images, numbers, and sounds, and how to train your models to improve them.

You’ll turn your models into 13 fun computer games and apps, including:

  • A Rock, Paper, Scissors game that recognizes your hand shapes
  • A computer character that reacts to insults and compliments
  • An interactive virtual assistant (like Siri or Alexa)
  • A movie recommendation app
  • An AI version of Pac-Man

There’s no experience required and step-by-step instructions make sure that anyone can follow along!

No Experience Necessary! Ages 12+

Author Bio 

Dale Lane is an award-winning, UK-based IBM developer who has worked on IBM’s groundbreaking AI Watson platform since 2011. As a father of two, he enjoys projects that teach core principles of machine learning to younger students. Lane’s acclaimed website (, a key component of this book, is used in thousands of schools worldwide.

Table of contents 


Chapter 1. What is Artificial Intelligence?
Chapter 2. Introducing Machine Learning for Kids
Chapter 3. Sorting Animal Pictures
Chapter 4. Playing Rock, Paper, Scissors Against Your Computer
Chapter 5. Recognizing Movie Posters
Chapter 6. Mail Sorting
Chapter 7. Insulting a Computer
Chapter 8. Recognizing Language in Newspapers
Chapter 9. Finding an Object in a Picture
Chapter 10. Smart Assistants
Chapter 11. Chatbots
Chapter 12. Avoiding the Monster
Chapter 13. Tic Tac Toe
Chapter 14. Confusing the Computer
Chapter 15. Biasing the Computer
Chapter 16. Afterword

Appendix: Scratch

View the Copyright Page
View the detailed Table of Contents
View the Index


“What delights me about this book is that it’s wonderfully pragmatic, for it guides you in building AI systems that are very much relevant to contemporary computer science.”
(from the foreword)
—Grady Booch, IBM Fellow and Chief Scientist for Software Engineering, IBM Research

"Machine Learning for Kids is another leading-edge resource for data scientists, this time for very young data scientists."
—Daniel Gutierrez, insideBIGDATA

"The book is a guided hands-on and practical introduction to how artificial intelligence impacts our lives. It includes step-by-step instructions for making a variety of machine learning-powered projects in Scratch, and explains how they each relate to real-world AI applications."
Alphonse Devasia, Blogger

"Machine Learning and children in one sentence is only possible when cool folks like Dale Lane make it their passion to ‘make tech understandable’."
—Coding and More, YouTuber

Extra Stuff 

Watch author Dale Lane's appearance on the YouTube channel Coding and More.