A few weeks ago, when I partnered with Polaroid to review their new Snap Touch Camera, I decided that rather than keeping it all to myself, I’d hand it over to my son. He’s almost 12 and responsible enough to take care of it. His father is a pro photog, as was my grandfather, so the photography bug is definitely in his genes. Things have been a little rough at school lately, so I figured a cool new camera would help cheer him up. I thought he’d mess around with it a bit and forget all about it.

Need a great gift idea for your tween? Check out 5 amazing things that happen when you give a kid a camera!

I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it became way more than just a new gadget to mess around with. In fact, a few amazing things happen when you give a kid a camera. If you’re on the fence about buying one for your tween (or even your older elementary school kid), check out these benefits that I saw!

5 Benefits of Giving a Kid a Camera

If you didn’t catch that disclosure in the first paragraph, here it is again: I received the Polaroid Snap Touch Camera in exchange for an honest review. This post also contains affiliate links.

Need a great gift idea for your tween? Check out 5 amazing things that happen when you give a kid a camera!

They gain confidence

Tweens have it so rough when it comes to self-confidence. Between bullying, hormonal changes and the stress of school, I’ve seen first hand just how much these years can knock a kid down. While photography alone can’t solve all these problems, there’s something wonderful about seeing your kid smile when he realizes he captured the perfect shot of a fidgety cat!

They see the world through a whole new set of eyes

Need a great gift idea for your tween? Check out 5 amazing things that happen when you give a kid a camera!

I’ve heard people say that constantly looking at life through the lens of a camera creates a feeling of disconnection, but I totally disagree. Between zooming in to capture a tiny bug to zooming out for a photo of a deer walking through the woods, photography helps our kids really see the rest of world around them beyond a quick glance. This, in turn, can help them feel more connected. The Polaroid Snap Touch comes with a beautiful 3.5 inch LCD touchscreen display, so our screen-oriented kids don’t have to step too far out of their comfort zone.

They discover new joys in everyday moments

Need a great gift idea for your tween? Check out 5 amazing things that happen when you give a kid a camera!

This one was taken with the Polaroid Snap Touch. It’s the only picture my son took that doesn’t show my messy house!


Jake spends most of the time photographing our pets. While our cats and Freya definitely do some zany things, what I really love about this is that he’s capturing them in their everyday poses: hanging out in a box, lounging on the couch, etc. He sees the magic in such simple moments, and it leads him to appreciate everything he has a bit more. Tweens get so overwhelmed with school drama, who said what, and who has what that it can be hard for them to realize that it really is the little things in life that bring us sustained joy.

They actually want to go outside

Eventually, they’re going to get tired of taking pictures of everything inside the house, so they’ll want to head out into the world and find new subjects. As they get better with the camera, they’ll also learn that natural lighting works best. The result? They actually want to put on their shoes and head outdoors. Trust me, that is a truly magical benefit!

They get to unleash their creativity

As long as you’re not a professional photographer trying to sell your pics to a magazine or something, there really is no “wrong” way to take a picture. Even the grainiest, grittiest, flash-mishapiest (yes, I know that’s not a word) picture can become a beautiful piece of art. With the extra creative features of the Polaroid Snap Touch, they have even more opportunities to use their imagination. Add stickers to your subjects, change the photo to a black and white or sepia shot, or print with fun borders. Since you can print out the pictures instantly, the creativity doesn’t end after your kid gets that perfect shot.

More about the Polaroid Snap Touch Camera

While you’ll see amazing benefits of giving a kid just about any camera, Jake really loves the Polaroid Snap Touch because he can print out his favorite shots right away, either as is or with fun extras. The camera uses ZINK® Zero Ink technology, so you just need to get the Zink® photo paper. You get a 10-pack in the box when you buy the camera. After that, you can buy different sized paper packages.

Need a great gift idea for your tween? Check out 5 amazing things that happen when you give a kid a camera!

Obviously, you’re not going to want to your child to print every single picture. That would get a little expensive, especially if you have a major shutterbug. The Polaroid Instant Snap doesn’t have much in the way of onboard storage, but you can add a micro-SD card up to 128GB and keep all the pictures you want. Honestly, you probably don’t need one that big unless you’re planning a vacation to the middle of the ocean for a month and will have no way to transfer photos.

You can also transfer photos via the included USB cable (which you’ll also use to charge it), through Bluetooth connectivity or through an app (available for both iOS and Android). The camera shoots in 13MP for stills, and 1080p full HD for videos. It even has a selfie timer and selfie mirror for even more fun.

Visit Polaroid to learn more about the Snap Touch Camera, then head over to Amazon to purchase. The camera comes in a bunch of fun colors!


Can you think of any other great benefits to giving a kid a camera?