Teach circuit building and basic computer programming in Python with Level A.
Level A is the first 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.
Orders can be placed here on the website or feel free tocontact usfor a custom quote or to submit a purchase order. Each web order or institutional purchase order must include the following three items:
SKU 301 Level A Base Bundle (Includes Level A curriculum, 5 student licenses, 2 Level A component kits)
SKU 302 Level A Student License (for >5 students)
SKU 303 Level A Component Kit (for >2 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.
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, the classroom base bundle includes the curriculum, 5 student licenses, and 2 component kits. Additional licenses and component kits can be purchased for groups of >5 students or if >2 component kits are needed.
Level A Component Kit
Purchase one component kit for every 1-3 students. Each component kit contains:
Raspberry Pi 3 B 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
RGB LED x2
Resistors 220 Ohm x6
Resistors 1,000 Ohm x6
Resistors 10,000 Ohm x6
Pushbutton Switch x3
Jumper Wires x12
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 (optional)
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.
Level A 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.
Gain the skills to independently tackle projects found online.
After completing Level A, we recommend students continue the Intro to Robotics series:
Level C: Incorporating Video and Advanced Programming (Summer 2019)
Level D: Working with Motors and Taking It Mobile (Fall 2019)
Classroom versions of Level A and Level B can be purchased together by clicking here.
What Other Users are Saying
"My kids have really enjoyed seeing what happens when they’ve created a complete circuit. They light up with a feeling of accomplishment. I’ve enjoyed learning alongside them." Deb, West Virginia
"My son is starting college next year, electrical engineering technology will be his major. We are using your curriculum to get a head start on college. He is loving the program. I have to tell him to stop and move on to other school work! He has just a couple lessons left and can’t wait for level B." Rudy, Michigan
"Thank you! My daughter has enjoyed learning step-by-step with curriculum that sets her up for success." Pam, Tennessee
"I purchased Level A for my son, and he loves it! We are only on lesson 2, because of his chemo treatments. However, even though he is on just on Lesson 2 he has learned quite a few new concepts he didn’t already know. This is his favorite class and wants to complete all of the levels. Thank you so much for providing the opportunity to parents to help jumpstart their child’s chosen career path." Kelly, Louisiana
"We just wanted to let you know that my son is enjoying this program very much. He looks forward to it each time and we find that it has filled the gaps that other programs he has worked with have failed to address. He’s very much looking forward to Level B! There is a lot of reading which he doesn’t relish, but he is perfectly capable of reading it and we’ve made a handy little notebook to keep vocabulary words and unfamiliar terms in so it’s been a good experience in early note-taking, too." Roxy, Nebraska
Click hereto view the Level A Sample Lesson A-18 (Final Project)
Level A 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 many lessons are in Level A and how long does each lesson take?
A. There are 18 lessons and each lesson will take approximately 60-90 minutes to complete. In a classroom setting we would suggest allowing a full semester (20-30 hours) to complete Level A. 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?
Also, please head on over to Facebook and join the42 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 students do after completing this course?
A.After a student completes Level A, they will have basic electrical and programming skills they can use to tackle beginner Raspberry Pi projects they find online.Click hereto see a sample of appropriate projects. We also recommend students move on to Level B to continue their robotics education:
Level C: Incorporating Video and Advanced Programming (Summer 2019)
Level D: Working with Motors and Taking It Mobile (Summer 2019)
Q. I’m only interested in my students being introduced to electronics and programming, is there value in only completing Level A 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.
Q. How is the curriculum organized?
A.Here is an overview of the sections of the curriculum (click hereto view the Table of Contents):
Working with electrical components to build circuits (Lessons 1-8)
Setting up the Raspberry Pi (Lessons 9)
Writing computer programs in Python (Lessons 10-18)
Controlling circuits you build with computer programs you write (Lessons 16-18)
Q. How will I receive my order?
A.The PDF file containing the 360 page curriculum can be downloaded following purchase. A hard copy of the curriculum is not available. Please note, if ordering via PO, it is helpful to have the teacher's email address listed so we can get an account set up for the teacher to download the file. Component kits will be shipped out and will arrive shortly.