Robotics kits are the next step for kids who have outgrown Legos

Robotics kits are the next step for kids who have outgrown Legos

     We all know Legos; these tiny toys are found everywhere from bedrooms to waiting rooms in doctor’s offices. And most of us love the little bricks that we turn into creations. While there is a range of products that appeal to children of different ages, eventually your kid will outgrow Legos. When this time comes, usually around the middle school years, there are two responses. Either your child will move on to other activities, or they will pursue another route to constructively express their creative through building things. If they chose the latter, robotics kits provide the perfect progression.

     Legos are great products that help develop crucial skills in our children, which partially explains their popularity. Dealing with small bricks refines motor skills. The bright colors are engaging. Even for toddlers, there are kits with larger bricks that are easier to stack. As they age, they can find their favorite movie characters on the boxes, which fuels their desire to interact with them and build them on their own. Perhaps most importantly, Legos come with instructions for specific builds. Following them precisely can be difficult, but the results are quite rewarding. But as kids age, they discover that they can toss the guide booklet aside and undertake projects from their own imaginations. This type of freedom is what leads to expression, creativity, and mental growth.

Legos are a great way to get kids interested in building with their hands, but have a limited shelf-life.

Legos are a great way to get kids interested in building with their hands, but have a limited shelf-life.

     The issue is that Legos can only provide so much as a construction tool. Static bricks are boring, and even the addition of pulleys, wheels, decals, and launchers can only add so much excitement. To put it simply, kids can get bored of Legos. This isn’t because they aren’t creative enough, but rather because Legos cannot keep up with their minds. Putting together a handful of bricks from a box doesn’t even compare to the monumental constructions kids make in the widely popular video game Minecraft. This game provides a virtual outlet for that creativity, which is stifled by the limitation of the physical bricks in their hands.

 

     But for those looking for a more tangible, hands-on approach, robotics is the ideal segue from childish, whimsical construction into real-life, advanced concepts. There are a variety of beginner robotics kits out there, each catering to different target audiences. This diversity ensures that there is something available for everyone. At first, these kits follow the same steps as Legos. At the start, you have to follow instructions to build something. They begin by teaching you how to put the pieces together into an interesting shape. But much like Legos, once the basics are understood, the real fun begins.

PSST.....DOWNLOAD OUR FREE 80+ PAGE BOOK ON HOW TO START A ROBOTICS CLUB! CLICK HERE!!!

Many of the things that are attractive about Legos carry over into more advanced robotics kits. However, the electronics, tools, and parts are sleeker and more suited to real robotics.

Many of the things that are attractive about Legos carry over into more advanced robotics kits. However, the electronics, tools, and parts are sleeker and more suited to real robotics.

     The same skills that are developed by Legos also apply to robotics. The pieces are even more varied than simple blocks, with many small parts and moving pieces. It can be a struggle to keep track of all the pieces, the literal nuts, and bolts, of your device. Staying organized is necessary for any successful build. Maintaining a mental image of the end product is also important, flexing the spatial reasoning portions of the brain. But most importantly, the creative processes that happen when a child is free-building with Legos are amplified with robotics. There are some additional constraints; it can take much longer to build a robot than it does to throw together some bricks. But the flipside is that there are many more opportunities to create a wonderful end product. You can make your robot walk, think, move, sense, and respond.

     There is a whole new dimension to robotics that Legos cannot touch upon. Robots are more than just a shell of metal. Their electronic components breathe life into these toys. This also gives your child an excellent opportunity to delve into some new subjects like coding and electronics. Robots can’t do anything on their own, so the code is the way we give them instructions. This is where we come full circle. Instead of blindly following a manual yourself, you are writing the manual that the robot must follow. It takes some time to learn how to code, but many find that is not as difficult as it seems. And it is the best way to take full advantage of the possibilities that your robot holds.

     Legos are an amazing product that gets our students interested in creation, construction, and the basics of engineering. But that only takes a kid so far. As their minds grow, they will outpace Legos and search for new ways to build and create. Robotics is the best way to go. It offers, even more, freedom to explore and expand. It is more complex, of course, but that is an opportunity for kids to challenge themselves and learn more about seemingly disparate topics like electronics, coding, engineering, and design. An interest has to start somewhere, and for many that place is Legos. But for your child, don’t let that passion die. Robotics offers them continuity. It also opens the door to further study in robotics or any of the related fields. These are exciting, expanding fields that will doubtlessly continue to shape our world in the coming decades.

Derek Caporobotics kits, kids