Sphero unveils Indi car to teach kids programming
Using different colors, children learn basic programming concepts, such as ordering and solving problems using only specific orders.
These days there are quite a few small cars for children. But Sphero did something unusual: the company released an educational kit for elementary school children in the form of a small Indi car, which looks like Hot Wheels. According to the company, it should help children gain a basic understanding of programming principles and logical thinking.
How does the Indi car work?
The actions of the toy are programmed using special colored panels. Indi has built-in sensors which react to the color of the panels – depending on these reactions the car performs different movements. For example, Indi turns left on red, turns right on blue, brakes on green, and so on. By changing the combinations and the placement of the tiles, it is possible to build a heart for the car.
Using these different colors, children learn basic programming concepts, such as ordering and solving problems using only specific commands, while having fun. The idea is to create different types of complex roads avoiding traps and obstacles using maps. There are also puzzles for children to solve, which is equivalent to creating an application: they have a task and it must be solved using only the available resources.
As the website states, Indi is designed for grade two students. And at a more advanced level, children will be able to reprogram the car themselves using the application on the tablet. In the tasks, children are encouraged to make ready-made mazes, as well as to create their own for Indi.
Sphero Indi Car Outlook and Price
It is an interesting project because most experts agree that in several years, programming will be a basic school subject, and it will be used in almost all fields. So the sooner kids learn basic concepts, the better.
The one-time set costs $ 125 and is available for pre-order now. It is designed for three children and includes an Indi toy car, a set of colored tiles, programming tasks and a storage case.
The entire class kit consists of eight Indi kits and costs $ 1,200. The company will start shipping the Basic and Cool Packs in September. The Sphero Edu Jr mobile app for more advanced learning can be installed for free. The kits also include a teacher’s guide on how to teach a lesson using Indi.
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