Personal

Kids and electronics

March 17, 2008

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Kids and electronics

I want my daughters to grow up having good fundamental knowledge of things like basic electronics, plumbing, mechanical stuff, construction etc. I recognize that more and more analog things will be digital in her future, but it never hurts to know the basics.

To that end, I recently bought Gia, my three-year-old, her first electronics project kit. I researched this quite a bit — I did not want anything overly complex, nor did I want anything too simple. Something that would be fun and get her to think and ask questions. I found the perfect kit — Snap Circuits.

Although their website is horrible and ugly, their product is awesome. I got the SC-100 basic kit. It has about a 100 projects you can do using a battery pack, motor, speaker, music chip, alarm chip, resistors and a few other parts.

So far, we have created mostly projects that make cool sounds. I think Gia’s favorites were the ones where the motor speed can be increased and then shut off causing the flimsy plastic wheel to become airborne. Another one is a water alarm where two wires have to be inserted into a glass of water to cause an alarm to go off.

Overall, I am pleased with Snap Circuits. It is helping me achieve exactly the goal I wanted while giving dad+daughter some fun things to do besides tinker with home brew computers.

In this picture, Gia is trying out a fun, motion-activated “Happy Birthday” tune player project.

Co-founder/CTO WhenHub; co-founder DNN Software; founder Edaptable; educator; Open Source proponent; Microsoft MVP; tech geek; creative thinker; husband; dad. Personal blog: http://www.kalyani.com. Twitter: @techbubble
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