I’ve been testing out the Robo Wunderkind Robotics Kit for the past couple of months from the perspective of an educator and a parent. I’ve tested out a dozen or so of these types of products (building blocks + iPad app), and they’ve all had one thing in common: they can be overwhelming for kids. Many of them include hundreds of pieces with pages full of options of things to create. After spending some time with it, I am ready to give you my Robo Wunderkind Robotics Kit review.
About Making The Grade: Every other Saturday, Bradley Chambers publishes a new article about Apple in education. He has been managing Apple devices in an education environment since 2009. Through his experience deploying and managing 100s of Macs and 100s of iPads, Bradley will highlight ways in which Apple’s products work at scale, stories from the trenches of IT management, and ways Apple could improve its products for students.
Like I mentioned earlier, the paradox of choice is a common problem I have with a lot of these types of kits, but the Robo Wunderkind kit takes a hard stance to avoid that. The kit comes in two options: 17 pieces or 23 pieces. I love that model. Instead of telling kids they can create 1000s of possible combinations using hundreds of pieces, you can go to a child and say you have 23 pieces: what can you do?
I think that shows a lot of thoughtfulness in the minds of the creators. One of the problems I think we all face in 2019 is having too many options. We had thousands of movies, TV shows, books, videos, etc. to take our time. Even as an adult, I can often feel overwhelmed.
The kit comes with a handful of different types of pieces:
- Button: Knows when you click it
- Main block: powers the other blocks
- Connector block: connects up to six other blocks
- RGB light: it can light up with multiple color options
- Distance sensor: sees things up to 2 meters
- Motor: rotates at a set speed
- Servo motor: turns at precise angles
Robot Wunderkind LEGO Compatibility
One of my favorite parts of the Wunderkind kit is its compatibility with LEGO as well. We have millions of LEGO products at our house, and it’s my boys’ favorite toy to play with at home. By allowing them to mix and match some of their favorite Harry Potter LEGO sets with this kit, they loved it even more.
So we’ve discussed the kit, but that is just half of the fun. Once you get a robot built, you can now interact with it using the iPad app. Two iPad apps are compatible with Robot Wunderkind. Robo Live and Robo Code.
The Robo Live app allows you to remote control robots built with the help of Robo Wunderkind robotics kits. Play with your robotic friends by using drag and drop functions on the app’s dashboard, and control your robots’ actions, such as driving, turning, making sounds, blinking, and other.
The Robo Code app opens the world of programming for kids. With its child-friendly design and intuitive coding process, this app guides children in learning 21st-century skills in a fun and easy way. Together with Robo Wunderkind robotics kits, it makes coding and robotics a child’s play.
So essentially, the apps are dividing into two ideas: using your robot and then coding things to have your robot to do. Depending on your interest at the time, both are highly useful. Both apps are easy to understand for novice users, as it contains a lot of drag and drop type movements. Overall, I have no complaints about the app design. They are easy to navigate, use, and connect to the robot.
Robot Wunderkind Wrap-up
Overall, the Wunderkind is an ideal gift for younger kids who you want to expose to coding. The thoughtfulness that has gone into simplifying the product is eye-opening to me. If you are looking for a STEM-related gift for a younger child for Christmas, I think you’d do well in picking the Robot Wunderkind kit. If you are an educator looking for a STEM tool in your classroom, be sure to check out their Educator resources as well. The Robo Coding Saga kit is also currently on Kickstarter as well.
Robot Wunderkind can be purchased on Amazon, starting at $179.99.
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