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One of the great things about making is that it really is for everyone — every budget, every skill level, and every age group.

Children are one of the groups that can benefit the most from Arduino. Getting exposed to making and home automation from an early age can be enormously beneficial for kids and their families, and can spark a lifelong love for technology.

In this article, we’ll look at why Arduino is so great for kids, and some of the ways parents, older relatives, and teachers can use Arduino’s products to entertain, educate, and inspire young learners.

Why is Arduino so great for kids?

  • It teaches valuable STEM skills: STEM has always been a lucrative field, and as we enter an increasingly tech-driven world this trend looks likely to continue. Arduino projects can help kids gain hands-on experience and build a solid foundation of STEM skills from an early age.
  • It can begin a lifelong love for engineering. Making projects from a young age can be the start of a wonderful journey, giving kids a passion that can follow them through life and lead to many great experiences.
  • It’s a community: The Arduino community extends across the entire world, with regular meetups and events where like-minded makers can get together. For kids, this can be a great way to make friends and be part of a wider group.
  • It helps build wider skills: On top of pure STEM, using Arduino can also help kids grow in other areas, by encouraging skills like problem-solving and teamwork.
  • It’s fun: What more needs to be said? Tinkering with Arduino projects is a ton of fun, and that’s a huge benefit in itself.

5 ways to use Arduino with kids

Now let’s take a look at some specific ways we can use Arduino with young learners, illustrated with a few real-life examples of projects.

1. Learn through projects

Arduino can be the perfect gateway into making and engineering as hobbies, by giving kids accessible and fun projects to learn fundamental skills and gain practical experience.

Take a look at this project, for example — which teaches kids the fundamentals of AI and machine learning via a fun game. Since these skills are exploding in importance, getting a solid headstart here is a valuable opportunity.

2. Projects for groups

One of the best things about Arduino for kids is the teamwork aspect, and the ability to work together toward a shared goal. This not only brings a new dimension of fun to the activity but also helps foster social skills and make friends.

Take a look at this automated gardening project from EDUcentrum. In this tutorial, kids build a smart watering system for a connected plant, which they will then monitor over time. Then, they’ll discuss the project with their peers and do a presentation.

3. Projects for kids with kids with autism

STEM really should be accessible to everyone, and in fact, children with autism can benefit enormously from Arduino projects.

Arduino For Autism is a group dedicated to helping mentor kids with autism, showing them how to work with microcontrollers. It’s designed to give kids with autism an introduction to the world of making and STEM in general, helping lay the foundations for skills like coding, engineering, and game development.

Arduino can also be a useful tool for parents of children with autism. Phillip Mallon is a great example — on his website he shares the projects he’s built to help his son Jason, who has severe autism. Examples include a simpler timer for time management and an easy-to-use MP3 player.

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4. Projects to help parents

Parenting is a tough task, but Arduino can help in this area, too.

For example, check out this baby formula tracker. The monitor is designed to help randallph and his wife keep track of their daughter’s feeding times and make sure she is eating the right amounts at the right intervals.

5. Learning mixed with fun

Learning doesn’t have to be a chore — and there’s no better proof of that than this project, a device that launches NERF darts to show how angles affect the trajectory of ballistics.

It was built by Arduino user buildfams and won Arduino Project of the Month in March 2023. Buildfams and his son worked together to build the project — a valuable learning experience in itself — and ended up with a fun gadget and a great way to learn key physics concepts.

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Tools and products

On top of project ideas, Arduino also has several tools and products specifically designed to help beginners and kids make a start with their own projects. Let’s take a closer look.

Get started with making

If you or your kids are brand new to making, Arduino’s Student Kit is made for you. It’s built to help learners get started with making projects, covering basic skills like coding and building electronic circuits. It’s made for complete beginners — making it perfect for kids — and includes 11 activities designed to guide the learner through key concepts and important skills.

Learn key scientific skills

If learning basic scientific skills and concepts is your goal, look no further than the Science Kit R3 by Arduino. Designed to teach key scientific skills, bringing abstract theories to life through practical, interactive projects.

Learn the basics of STEM

Arduino’s Starter Kit is the perfect introduction to STEM and can be used at home or in the classroom. The kit teaches fundamental skills like coding and electronics through engaging, fun projects. It covers a ton of important basic concepts, from sensors and actuators to digital logic, while also encouraging learners to think critically and work together to solve problems.

Alvik

Arduino enthusiasts have yet another product to play with! Alvik is designed for students and teachers to explore the world of robotics, introducing this fascinating field to young learners with a unique approach. Why not grab yours today?!

Learn more about Arduino and how you can use it with young learners (and older ones too!).

Read more about this on: Arduino Blog