Levels A and B are the first two of four levels in the Intro to Robotics series. Intro to Robotics is designed to start at the very beginning and systematically teach students electronics, programming, and then how to combine those skills to build a functional robot.
Along the way they will learn how to use common electrical components, read schematics, troubleshoot, and craft every line of computer code.
Important Information for Virtual Classes:
Please note, classroom and student licensing is intended for in-person use. While our program can be used for virtual classes, the purchaser of the curriculum is required to maintain control of the curriculum files and is liable for curriculum distribution outside the licensing agreement. Instructors are not allowed to distribute curriculum files to students in a manner that would allow students to distribute the files to others.
If your class model requires students to have a copy of the curriculum files, each family should purchase a home kit instead. This will allow each family to have their own watermarked copy of the curriculum files. Home kits can be found here.
Orders can be placed here on the website or feel free to contact us for a custom quote or to submit a purchase order. Each web order or institutional purchase order must include the following three line items:
- SKU 303 Levels A and B Base Bundle (Includes Level A and Level B curriculum, 5 student licenses, 2 sets of Level A and Level B component kits)
- SKU 306 Levels A and B Student License (for >5 students)
- SKU 309 Levels A and B Component Kits (for >2 sets of component kits)
We recommend including the classroom teacher's email address on the PO so we can set up a download account for the teacher at the time the order is created. This will allow the teacher to access the curriculum without delay.
Levels A & B Classroom Curriculum and Student Licenses
- 350 page Level A curriculum containing 18 step-by-step lessons
- 575 page Level B curriculum containing 18 step-by-step lessons
The curriculum is available as a downloadable PDF only. We do not offer printed copies.
- In addition to the curriculum, one license should be purchased per student. Please note, five student licenses and two component kits are included in the base kit bundle.
Levels A & B Component Kit
Purchase one component kit for every 1-3 students. Each component kit contains:
- Raspberry Pi x1
- 5 volt Power Supply with AC Adapter x1
- Raspberry Pi Case
- Micro SD Card with Adapter
- Ribbon Cable x1
- Wedge Assembly x1
- Battery Holder with Wires x1
- Breadboard x1
- LEDs x8
- RGB LED x2
- Resistors 220 Ohm x6
- Resistors 1,000 Ohm x6
- Resistors 10,000 Ohm x6
- Pushbutton Switch x3
- Jumper Wires x12
- Piezo Speaker x1
- Slide Switch x1
- 3x4 Matrix Keypad x1
- RFID Reader x1
- RFID Tags x2
- Analog-to-Digital Converter x1
- 10k Potentiometer with Knob x1
- Phototransistor x1
- Level Shifting Integrated Circuit x1
- Infrared Obstacle Sensor x1
- Ultrasonic Range Sensor x1
- Infrared Line Sensor x1
- Temperature Sensor x1
- OLED Display x1
- Capacitive Touch Sensor x1
- 220uF Capacitor x2
- 2200uF Capacitor x1
- Jumper Wires (Short Male-to-Male) x8
- Jumper Wires (Long Male-to-Male) x4
- Jumper Wires (Long Male-to-Female) x8
Please note, all components are ready to use. Any soldering or other critical modifications have been made to each piece of equipment to ensure a student can use the component without issues. Please contact us if replacement components are needed. Part compatibility or required prep work (soldering, etc.) is a potential issue when purchasing components from other sources.
For each component kit purchased, you will also need the following items (not included):
AA Batteries x2
Computer Monitor (or television provided it has HDMI inputs)
HDMI cable (likely currently attached to the computer monitor)
Keyboard and Mouse (use a wired keyboard and mouse if possible)
Internet access, wired or wireless
Please note, none of the equipment needs to be exclusive to the Raspberry Pi. Students may be able to use monitors, keyboards, and mice currently in the computer lab. Double check for the proper inputs and cables.
For more information, check out this video where Julie walks you through the extra equipment requirements.
Levels A & B Scope and Sequence
- Learn how electricity and electrical equipment work.
- Learn to properly use common electrical components that make up circuits including breadboards, batteries, LEDs, resistors, jumper wires, and switches.
- Build both series and parallel circuits and understand how to use Ohm's Law when designing circuits.
- Practice systematic troubleshooting techniques including half-splitting.
- Learn to read schematic drawings.
- Learn to use a Raspberry Pi (a mini computer) including connecting it to peripherals (keyboard, mouse, etc.) as well as downloading files and software updates.
- Learn to use several included software packages including Raspbian OS, Nano, and Thonny.
- Learn to to create basic Python programs including comments, merging strings, user input, mathematical functions, lists, if/else statements, and loops to control electrical circuits and create games.
- Learn to identify and correct errors in Python computer programs.
- Work administratively with files, folders, and directories.
- Continue to expand coding knowledge to include functions, advanced list commands, logical operators, while true loops, advanced string techniques, try/except/finally, and multithreaded operations.
- Understand pulse width modulation.
- Learn to work with new types of switches, a matrix-style keypad, potentiometers, phototransistors, infrared sensors, RFID readers, temperature sensors, an I2C display, and ultrasonic range sensors.
- Learn to use Github and adjust for various versions of Python.
- Work with an analog-to-digital converter integrated circuit.
- Continue to improve troubleshooting skills for both electrical circuits and computer programs.
- Continue to gain the skills to independently tackle projects found online.
After completing Level A and Level B, we recommend students continue the Intro to Robotics series:
Click Here to Download a Sample Packet for Level A (including three full lessons and a detailed scope and sequence for the course)
Levels A & B FAQ
Q. I've never taught electronics, programming, or robotics? How can I use this program?
A. We specifically designed our curriculum kits to be used by teachers with no background in electronics, programming or robotics. With clear explanations, step-by-step instructions, a complete components kit included, and one-on-one support from our amazing team, we are confident you can successfully teach your class these skills.
Q. What age is this curriculum appropriate for?
A. We've designed the program to be used with middle school and high school students. While some users have success using the program with students who are a bit younger, this may require modifying the lessons a bit to only cover the material at a more superficial level.
Q. How will I receive my order?
A. The PDF files containing the curriculum can be downloaded following purchase. Printed copies of the curriculum are not available. The component kits will be shipped to you.
If ordering via PO, please include the email address for the classroom teacher so a download account can be set up at the time the order is placed.
Q. How many lessons are in Levels A & B and how long does each lesson take?
A. There are 18 lessons in each level. Level A lessons will take approximately 60-90 minutes to complete. Level B lessons will take approximately 90-120 minutes to complete. In a classroom setting we would suggest allowing a full school year (60-80 hours) to complete Levels A and B. Earlier lessons may be completed more quickly allowing more classroom time to dig into later lessons when students are practicing both coding and electronics skills together.
Q. What if we have a question or run into a problem?
A. We are here to help! Click here to contact us and we will help you get back on the right track.
Also, please head on over to Facebook and join the 42 Electronics User Group
. It's a great place for current or perspective users to ask questions, get project ideas, and connect with others using the Intro to Robotics program.
Q. What should my students do after completing this course?
A. After students complete Levels A & B, they will have electrical and programming skills they can use to tackle beginner and many intermediate Raspberry Pi projects they find online. We also recommend students move on to Level C to continue their robotics education:
Q. I’m only interested in my students being introduced to electronics and programming, is there value in only completing Level A and B rather than all four levels?
A. While each level builds on the previous level, we have designed this course so a student can stop upon completion of any level and still have solid, complementary skills in working both with electrical components as well as the most common Python coding commands. While we do recommend students continue to work through successive levels, we recognize that won’t be appropriate for all situations and an instructor or student may be satisfied with the skills and exposure gained by completing only one, two, or three levels.
Q. Why does this program teach Python instead of a different programming language?
A. We teach Python for a couple of reasons:
- Python is currently the fastest growing computer language. Companies such as YouTube, Dropbox, Google, Quora, Instagram, Spotify, Reddit, and Yahoo Maps used Python to build their platforms. While programming languages tend to come and go over time, Python is well rooted and is likely to be a popular language for many years.
- Python is particularly well suited to beginners. The code is intuitive and easy to read. It also requires far fewer lines of code to accomplish tasks compared to other popular languages such as C++ and Java.
Q. Are the component kits reusable for the next group of students I teach?
A. Yes! With proper care, the components are non-consumable. In reality some of the more fragile parts (LEDs, resistors, etc.) may need to be replaced fairly regularly but those particular components are inexpensive to replace. Contact us for information on replacement parts so we can help ensure compatibility and help you find a bulk solution if you are teaching large numbers of students.