The Lego brand continues to strengthen its hold on the imagination through a wide range of building blocks of real and fantastical worlds. The company’s foray into robotics for kids and adults alike, then, doesn’t come as a surprise since robotics is, after all, building blocks with movements! The robotic kits market is also becoming better because Lego is truly giving its competitors competition, especially with the likes of the LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 31313 Robot Kit for Kids. Now, don’t be fooled by the “robot kit for kids” label on the product. Even adults with robotics experience found them enjoyable because of the challenge that it can provide. Of course, beginners including elementary school-age children will find it easy to assemble and operate, also providing them with more opportunities to expand their robotics skills.
Features of the Lego Mindstorms EV3 31313 Robot Kit for Kids
The Lego Mindstorms EV3 31313 robot kit is one of a series of Mindstorms products released by the world-famous Lego company. If you already played with the older versions, then you are familiar with this set. Still, there are numerous things to be excited about. If you are new to the Mindstorms series, your enjoyment of the play will be heightened because most of its features seem new and exciting. Speaking of features, the robot kit has the following features that make it stand out among the robot kits for kids in the market. You should be able to check them out when you have the kit in your hands, but it doesn’t hurt to get the lowdown here.
Intelligent EV3 Brick
This isn’t just any old brick! This brick is the heart of the robot kit with a powerful ARM9 processor coupled with a micro-SD card reader, a USB port for connection to Wi-Fi networks, and four motor ports. With such powerful features, your kid can build, program and run their own robots from their iOS and Android-powered tablet devices; the robots are powered by the brand’s easy-to-install EV3 Programmer App.
Building instruction booklet
The instructions are well-written, so there’s no second-guessing whether you and your kid are doing it right or not. You have to log in to the Lego website, download the free EV3 software, and start learning the steps in building and programming the wide range of models. You can start with the four standard models included in the kit and then progress to the dozen or so Mindstorms models currently available. Are you are still uncertain about buying the kit? You can just download the software, try it out, and even experiment with it before buying the kit itself. You should be patient as the software can take the time to download due to its 603MB size (Windows version). When you have downloaded the software, you have access to an intuitive interface that serves as your guide in building and programming your selected models. As you build each model, you will learn more skills in programming – or more appropriately, your kid will increase his knowledge and skills in robot programming while also enjoying his playtime. Just imagine it: he not only learns basic robotics but he’s also developing his troubleshooting, problem-solving, and decision-making skills!
The set comes with everything necessary to build and program the robot. Aside from the 550+ building blocks, which are known as the Lego Technic elements, there are also three interactive servo motors, color sensor, touch sensor, and infrared sensor. There’s obviously the remote control, a must since your kid will love controlling the robot on his own. From the set, you and/or your child can create five different robots, each one featuring specific movements. Lego ensures that boredom doesn’t set in too soon with these distinct features, aside from the challenge of building and programming the robots. The Five robots are:
- EV3 Storm with spinning tri-blade and blasting bazooka
- Track3R, an all-terrain robot that crawls and with four tools
- Gripper, a robot with grasping grippers for lifting things
- R3Ptar, a snake-like robot
- Spik3R, a six-legged robot with tail (i.e., scorpion-inspired)
If your kid is an advanced robotics student, you will find the EV3 a good learning platform, too.
- Comes with all the necessary parts from the building blocks, sensors and remote control to the instructions booklet
- Easy to assemble with the instructions booklet
- Provides hours of fun play with learning modes involved
- Expandable with the right skills
- Several small parts unsuitable for smaller children
- Doesn’t come with an organizer box
The LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 31313 Robot Kit for Kids isn’t just for kids! Adults will also find it an engaging toy that will provide them with hours of learning fun, especially in exploring the capabilities of each of the five robot models. But be sure to leave time for the kids to play with it, too – or better yet, get two kits so you don’t have to share.