The Tello EDU can be used in drone education, coding classes, and CTE programs to help educators facilitate well-rounded STEAM learning.

1. Due to its light weight, the drone should be used indoors or on windless days.
2. The Tello EDU can be programmed using Scratch, Swift, or Python.
3. Be sure to keep a strong Wi-Fi connection to your drone throughout all flights.
4. The drone can be flown and programmed with the Tello or Tello EDU app.
5. The flight time of the Tello EDU is pretty strong at roughly 13 minutes.
6. It comes as a single drone with accessories or in a 5-pack, 10-pack, or 20-pack.

The Tello EDU drone provides a ton of educational value in its versatility, affordability, programming options, and potential integration in remote and hybrid learning environments. The drone is incredibly compact and the various packs include helpful accessories for flying the drone in the right environment. Students can use the Tello EDU mobile app to create custom programs for their drone to execute or try the Tello app for additional STEM learning opportunities. Once paired with a device through the Tello EDU app, students can also easily control the aircraft using the on-screen joystick and add new levels of excitement to learning with up to 13 minutes of continuous flight time on a variety of compatible devices.


Compatibility

Tello EDU App:


Use of the Tello EDU app requires iOS 9.0+. It is compatible with iPhone 5s, iPhone SE, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPad mini 4, and iPad mini 4 Wi-Fi + Cellular. For use with Android devices, Android OS 4.4+ is required.

DroneBlocks App:


droneblocks app with the tello edu drone


To use the DroneBlocks app, devices must be running iOS 9.0+. The app is compatible with iPhones and iPads. For use with Android devices, Android 4.4+ is required. The DroneBlocks Chrome OS extension is also available.

The Tello EDU app is the best way for students to explore different types of coding with the Tello EDU and it provides extensive educational applications. Within the Tello EDU app, there are different programming options, including Scratch, Swift, and Python. For younger students and those who are new to coding, Scratch is block-based and the simplest of the three Tello EDU coding languages. Swift is a bit more complex and Python is the most complex option – likely reserved for older students with prior programming experience since it requires them to write text code as opposed to dragging and dropping code blocks into their programs.


Programming

  • To use the Tello EDU with Scratch, follow the instructions here.
  • To use the Tello EDU with Swift Playgrounds, download the Swift Playgrounds iOS app on your computer or mobile device and search for Tello Space Travel within the app. Download the course and follow the instructions. If using with an iPad, it requires iOS 13.4 or later. If using with a Mac, it requires macOS 10.15.4 or later.
  • To use the Tello EDU with Python, follow the instructions here


Safety

  • Only fly the Tello EDU in locations that are clear of buildings and other obstacles.
  • Avoid flying over or near people, buildings, vehicles, power lines, and other structures.
  • Fly in good weather conditions; Never fly when it is windy, raining, snowing, or foggy.
  • Do not touch the rotating propellers or motors, especially while they are moving.
  • Ideally, the Tello EDU should be flown indoors or in completely windless conditions.

Pre-Flight

  • Ensure the drone’s battery and your device are both fully charged. (Note: The battery level of your device could also drain quickly when using the Tello Edu app).
  • Ensure the drone battery is mounted firmly to the drone itself.
  • Ensure the propellers and guards are in good condition and securely mounted as well.
  • Ensure there is nothing obstructing the motors and that they are functioning normally.
  • Ensure the app you are using and the drone’s firmware have been updated to the latest versions. (If you’re using the Tello EDU again for the first time in a while, this is a necessary step to take as the Tello mobile apps are regularly updated).


Once all safety checks have been performed, students can then use the Tello EDU in STEM lessons. They’ll be able to choose from three different main flight modes of the Tello, which include manual mode, attitude mode, and its intelligent flight modes. In its manual mode, students can use the virtual joysticks within the app to control the Tello EDU’s flight path, including its orientation, forward and backward movements, altitude, and lateral movements. They can also select the speed they want for their Tello – slow (up to 8.9 mph) or fast (up to 17.8 mph).  


Attitude mode is something that’s put in place in case conditions change while the drone is in the air. It will automatically activate in the event that the drone’s vision positioning system becomes unavailable and results in the drone being unable to position itself in the air. This means that it can become easily affected by aerial conditions like weather and it should be landed as quickly as possible in a safe location.


Then, we have the Tello EDU’s intelligent flight modes, which include bounce mode, 8D flips, and Throw & Go. To use any of these modes in piloting the Tello EDU, students should first make sure that the drone’s battery level is at least 50 percent full. When bounce mode is activated, the drone will automatically fly up and down above any flat surface and increase its height if it detects a new object beneath it, such as your hand, or anything else. In its 8D flips mode, the Tello will automatically flip in one of eight different possible directions. And, in Throw & Go mode, students would be able to toss their drone in the air to launch it – a pretty cool wrinkle and a unique feature to drones that are used in education settings.


Operation

  • Keep your aircraft in sight while flying and use an observer for assistance if needed.
  • Only fly in environments where a strong Wi-Fi connection can be maintained between the device and the drone.
  • Do not fly above reflective surfaces like water or snow because this may affect the vision positioning system of the drone.
  • Do not fly the drone higher than 33 feet above ground level.
  • Programs can include elements that get the drone to fly towards and land on mission pads as well as perform unique aerial movements.
  • Find further instructions on using the Mission Pads here.

tello edu drone parts labeled

Maintenance

  • Do not use chipped or broken propellers or guards.
  • Keep the camera lens, sensors, and motors clean.


Battery

  • Avoid flying the drone when the flight battery level is critically low because this may permanently damage the battery or, worse, increase the likelihood of a crash.
  • Do not charge the battery immediately after flight because its temperature may be too high. Wait for it to cool down to room temperature.
  • If a low battery warning appears, charge the battery until the flight battery level reaches between 30-60 percent for long-term storage. This can extend battery life.
  • Remove the battery from the drone for long-term storage.
  • Keep the battery away from metal objects, heat sources, and water.
  • Always make sure the battery is fully charged before flying.
  • When a low battery warning is displayed in the app, land the aircraft as soon as it is safe.
  • Fully charge and discharge batteries at least once every three months to maintain battery life.


If you’re interested in one (or more) of the Tello EDU drones, head over to our store to see the different options. We offer an individual Tello EDU Kit, Small Classroom Kit, Medium Classroom Kit, and Large Classroom Kit as well as the virtual DroneBlocks professional development for educators to get more familiar with teaching with Tello’s. If you’d like to check out our other drones and accessories for STEM education, you can find them on our store as well. And, if you have any questions regarding drones, feel free to contact us at support@eduporium.com and follow us on Twitter and Instagram for more EdTech Tips & Tricks!