Good ideas to spark interest for youngsters?

Hello everybody!

I'm currently doing a bachelor's degree in information and communication technologies. I remember my first time working with an Arduino and it immediately sparked my interest! I would love to pass this spark to young kids aged around 8 years old. My girlfriend is a teacher and I would like to give a workshop there. Anybody got cool ideas which are not too complicated to get these kids interested?

Thanks in advance!

Lights and movement are good. I recall seeing some project where something (lego bricks? marbles?) come up a conveyer to a sorting station. Based on colour, they get pushed by servos to a slide to appropriate bins.

That would be awesome! Maybe that would be a cool introduction to immediately grab their attention. Maybe I could let them do some other stuff on the computer, such as making an LED blink

I'm not sure a blinking LED will cut it to hold interest for long. The sorting project is nice because you can make it into several subprojects such as move servo, detect colour, run motor for conveyer.

Line following robots are popular. Greenhouse controllers are good. I'm not sure that modern kids will be as impressed as I was by programs that flash a light or just send output to the serial monitor. They have higher expectations of what electronic devices can do, so I suspect something more fancy will be needed if you want to hold their attention for long.

Indeed I agree with you. However, how realistic is it that 8 year old kids can program a servo and make detect colour on the first time programming?

I could also make several projects myself and bring it to the classroom so they can pass it around. If they are interested enough I could come back another time to actually let them program stuff.

Some of them will take to it, some won't. Perhaps you could show some Arduino projects and propose an extra curricular program for those interested.

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That is a great idea! Thanks for your feedback :slight_smile:

See post #s 807-810.

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That looks awesome! Maybe I could try it out during my Summer break

Children love bright colors and things that flash, or LEGOs. You can combine Arduino projects with these things. Children are curious about things they have never seen before, and the results may be surprisingly good.

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Yes I saw a color sorting machine for skittles online already. Maybe I'm going to make that because it's not too tricky and I don't mind if they destroy it. I could always add LED strips to it to make it more interesting.