Eduporium Experiment | E-Blox pARTS
At Eduporium, we like tech tools that progress with students as they learn more skills. Take our new robotics progression map, for example. There are also plenty of other kits and product lines that do the same and one of them, which we were only introduced to recently, is E-Blox. A family company from somewhere in Illinois, E-Blox has created a new and perhaps even mor exciting spin on LEGO's - one that will get kids excited about engineering and learning!
So, you have your products like littleBits and Snap Circuits, which, by the way, were invented by one of E-Blox's co-founders, and you might think that there are already some usable electronics tools in the EdTech space and one that is quite literally electronic LEGO's. E-Blox is definitely similar to each of these tools, but also definitely is able to differentiate itself in what it can help kids accomplish.
For this experiment, I got to play with one of the pARTS kits - the Deluxe Set. It's spelled 'pARTS' becuase the creators of E-Blox went out of their way to make sure all the letters in STEAM were included in their product. As I began playing with this pARTS kit and watching some various videos I found online, it became pretty obvious that this product does have a little bit of littleBits in it. That may have been hard to read. Sorry.
What I'm getting at is that, to make E-Blox inventions work - they light up, blink, and do all sorts of things - students need to first make sure they're connected to the power block. The thing about E-Blox is that kids don't need any wires, but they're still able to build authentic 3D circuits! There are over 100 parts in this kit (and even more in some of the others), which affords kids with a ton of opportunties to get creative. They can build and build until they get something new and unique.
E-Blox is designed for safe use by children and is even able to avoid short circuits. I tried a few different combinations to see the different ways I could get the LEDs to light up and blink. When actually using E-Blox, you'll be able to see firsthand how simple it is. The pieces can sometimes require a little too much force to connect, but, once they're in there, they're in there good. I just constructed a little brick wall about five levels high and seven or eight levels wide using light-up blocks. Once I was done, I had a brilliant blinking barricade and it was super easy to put together!
E-Blox are a valuable addition to early elementaty classrooms and allow students the chance to learn a particular concept through hands-on construction and then progress on to something else. The kits are designed this way intentionally so that students are met with tougher challenges once they develop stronger skill sets, which is why we love it!
To grab an E-Blox kit of your own (there are a lot to choose from), click here to visit the Eduporium store! Be sure to check back in next Wednesday as well for the newest Eduporium Experiment featuring the programmable LightUp Tesla Kit!