Students learning robotics will work with a number of pieces of equipment but none are perhaps as important as a Raspberry Pi.
Invented in the UK several years ago with the purpose of providing an affordable computer to everyone in the world, the Raspberry Pi is about the size of a credit card. It packs a decent amount of processing power and can be used for the same sorts of tasks normally accomplished by a desktop or laptop. This includes accessing the internet, programming, creating documents, etc.
What makes the Raspberry Pi so incredible is that it's very inexpensive, often less than $40--an entire computer for $40! It can also be connected to standard computer monitors, keyboards, mice, printers, etc.so there's no special equipment needed.
The Raspberry Pi makes it possible for students to have their own computer to work with for programming or to even have multiple Pi's available for different long-term projects. A student can connect the Raspberry Pi to electrical circuits and devices and then write programs to control them. This includes programming to gather data, make decisions, and perform tasks.
Given all the advantages of using a Raspberry Pi, it is our top choice for our Intro to Robotics Curriculum and Kits. The skills a student learns in using the Raspberry Pi in the lessons are transferable later to other projects found online or something else the student dreams up.
To learn more about teaching your student robotics at home, please click here.