These days, coding is an essential skill and it is especially important for our future children of the world as technology now dominates a huge amount of different industries. Besides that, learning to code also teaches you how to solve problems and think logically in many creative ways.
I am so thrilled to have the opportunity to review these two Let’s Start Coding Base Kit 2 and Code Car kit to get my children to learn, write and teach each other coding. It is not their first time learning to code as their school have been emphasising coding since Year 5. They have both attended a 2-hour Apple Store Coding Lab for Kids lesson in Birmingham and they found it fascinating. They came home with a big smile and told us that they invented a game and played music using coding.
First, let me tell you a little history of Let’s Start Coding. This company is based in Louisville, Kentucky, which was launched in late 2015 in an effort to provide kids with a fun, guided way to start learning typed code. Since then, many children and adults have been learning coding with fun, hands-on projects! You can purchase kits online either from Let’s Start Coding or on Amazon.Com (they ship internationally) or a full kit on Amazon.co.uk.
The first kit that we have got here is the Base Kit 2 which includes over 55 online projects and 3.5 hours of video walk-through, plus coding challenges. There are over 1000 lines of code that they can tinker with, modify, and customize.
They will learn about:
- Analog vs. digital logic
- How fast computers can process logic and sensor readings
- How computers are programmed to make decisions
- Building basic electrical circuits (ground vs. power)
In total, there are 12 electronics components where children can create projects like a four tone piano and a multi-colour LED light lamp. I love that all the electronics components are really good quality and that they are safe for children to use. There are a few small parts, like the push button and LED lights, which can be stored neatly in a small fold-out plastic toolbox.
All the kits require the user to use a computer with internet access. It didn’t take us long to find our first project. We started off with the simplest project and then we moved on to try the more complicated hands-on projects.
Mr K had no problem understanding the coding but sometimes required a little help from Mr C. There were some trial and error but they managed to produce the right code to reproduce the tune for The Simpson’s famous opening intro.
We did watch a few useful tutorial videos to help us to understand and research different ways to modify the code. The website is easy to navigate and contains helpful resources.
He enjoyed modifying the pre-written code to experience different types of sounds and lights. He was also able to learn much more at his own pace without getting distracted. He is definitely inspired by the kits to write his own coding in the near future. These hands-on projects have given him the confidence to try more programming.
On the other hand, ten year old Ms C required plenty of help from Mr C by helping her to understand the pre-written code. Again, she is able to learn coding at her own pace. She particularly loves the Code Car kit, which comes with a car shape board with four built-in LED lights, four buttons, and a speaker. It also comes with a USB cable, reference cards and 14 self-guided projects.
She enjoys watching the flashing lights to all kinds of sound tones. This kit has provided her with a fun way to learn coding. Who said learning coding is boring! These kits allow them to learn through playing.
To be honest, these kits are not cheap, but they are very well made and should last for a long time. You are honestly paying for good quality, safe components to be used by your children. These kits are perfect tools to get children interested in coding and I would recommend them to anyone.
Disclosure: We received the samples for the purposes of writing this review, however, all thoughts and opinions remain our own. Images used with permission.