With the holiday season coming there are lot of toys and technology options we can choose to present as gifts to our children. As parents, we all know some toys will be a hit and others will be enjoyed for a while before it is put aside. Although, tablets, video games and television can be fun they can have some harmful effects if children use it for long periods of time. The best way to avoid our children being engaged in tablets, video games and television is to divert their energy to do fun stuff with technology that would be beneficial to them. We introduced our children to the Sphero SPRK Edition App-Controlled Robot.
Sphero is an advanced programmable robot ball designed for everyone 8 years and older. It is packed with technology and makes learning fun! The Sphero SPRK Edition connects to any iOS or Android device using Bluetooth and it can be controlled using various apps including the Sphero SPRK Edition App.
Sphero SPRK + Robotic Ball is powered by the Lightening Lab app which uses a visual block-based building interface to transform ideas into code and teach the principles of programming with hands-on activities. The text-based code viewer lets us see the code that is used to create simple and more complex commands to help learn.
It is equipped with Bluetooth SMART, SPRK+ has a range of 30 meters and can move on the ground or in the water and comes with programmable LED lights, gyroscope, and accelerometer. It is waterproof and shockproof with a scratch-resistant UV-coated polycarbonate shell. In the box, we get the Sphero SPRK edition, the charger, and a couple of tools to help with programming. It can hold 60-minutes of power on a full charge with its rechargeable lithium-ion battery. The Sphero comes with an induction charger, where you place the ball on the charger and it does the charging without plugging the ball to any wires.
Since the Sphero SPRK edition is clear and see through, it allows us to see the technology inside the robot which makes children eager to learn how to program and interact with the robot. Sphero SPRK Edition App gives us control of the Sphero Robot since we can program the robot to do simple steps such as change colour, roll and flip. There are examples of simple commands to help get the user to code. Most of these commands are self-explanatory and easy as drag and drop. We like how our children worked together to create and solve a simple program to make the Sphero move and turn in a specific direction. There are many creative ways to program the Sphero which will keep the children engaged and help them become more creative.
The app has a growing community where we can view programs created by other Sphero users and share our coded programs. There are numerous apps and games to control and steer the Sphero Robot using any of our Android or iOS device. We like how the Sphero SPRK Edition helps children make learning fun and interactive. It is a wonderful way to encourage STEM education and let our children learn math, science, coding, and technology in a fun way.
Sphero SPRK + Robotic Ball is a dream gift for the aspiring programmer. We can purchase it for $150 at Best Buy.
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