When I watched the TED talk on Little Bits, I knew I was going to have to get a set for my son. He loves all things LEGO – I have not blogged enough about his LEGO projects, a thing I intend to change in 2015 – and Little Bits seems like the next step as he continues to explore building, electronics, and technology.
I suggest you watch the TED talk I mentioned above. It’s only 5 minutes. Their creator explains what Little Bits are better than I could. In short, Little Bits are electronic modules of different colors, each color performing a specific task (like pulse, sound, light, wire etc), and which snap together via magnets. No soldering needed.
Little Bits are intended for children 8 to ∞. Our son turned 7 in November, but he looks like an 8-year-old and he reads at a 6th grade level. He builds LEGO projects intended for 14-year-olds. So who’s to say that we should wait another year to get him Little Bits?
We got the deluxe starter set ($199) for him this Christmas. It is the biggest kit they make, containing 18 modules and 3 accessories.
He also received the brick adapter ($9.95) so he can connect his circuits to LEGO bricks. They offer free shipping on all sets. Also, they grant 15% off to homeschool families. You should apply here for the discount.
Every day, he discovers what his Little Bits can do. Daddy spent some time with him in the beginning to offer instructions here and there, but our son is pretty much on his own now in this exploration. Frankly, I would not know how to guide him because electronics never was my cup of tea. I’m happy he knows what he is doing.
I would say he spends at least one hour a day exploring the projects listed in his instructions. Today, he built dancing signs, as he explains in this YouTube video. Then, he worked on a robot, but the cardboard box turned out to be too heavy, so I have no robot to show you. We are looking for lighter boxes to put it together. Learning happens especially when things don’t work out well.
“Build something that makes something” is one of the trademarked phrases Little Bits came up with. I can’t think of a better way for a child to spend his days than to build something that makes something. Can you?