Makeblock’s mBot is one of the best educational robot kits for beginners on the market. Unlike most robots, students build this one from scratch, bolstering their engineering skills and really getting into the inner workings and electronics involved with robotics. Designed for students in grades 1-7, mBot is easy to assemble and is a great entry-level introduction to robotics and programming.
Modern STEM education is all about giving students the tools to be creative and testing their 21st century skills with challenges that mimic those they will find in the real world. Sure, that all sounds great on the surface, especially to parents, but what exactly does this mean? Well, students need learning experiences that best prepare them for the jobs they will more than likely be holding in the future. One of those STEM jobs (the ‘E’) is engineering. Fortunately, for teachers of all grade levels, preparing students for jobs like these is not all that difficult.
Since their emergence a few years back, the line of Sphero robots has been helping students of many different ages learn some of the most important STEM concepts. It's exceptional at introducing them to topics like physics, problem solving, creativity, collaboration, and, most importantly, coding. Unlike other programmable robots, however, the Sphero, as its name indicates, is completely round and shaped like a sphere. This allows it to roll around -- sometimes pretty quickly -- and enables kids to control both its movements as well as its speed.
With the rise of STEM jobs and STEM education has come a renewed focus on hands-on learning. You probably already were aware of this. A big part of this hands-on learning, however, even in K-12 schools, is 3D printing. Engaging in 3D printing allows students to experience learning from brand new angles and put their creativity to use in ways that will legitimately help them prepare for their futures. Right now, scientists seem to using 3D printing for something new every day -- in some industries that you would expect and others that are pretty surprising.