Technology… it has truly taken over. When I was in school, we had elective classes like Home Economics and Wood Shop where we had to physically use our hands and minds to create. My oldest is now hitting elective classes and boy have they changed! He has declared he wants to be an engineer when he grows up and wants to take classes to prepare him for such. This year, his agenda includes a class that focuses on building and creating with programs online (nope, no more drawing out blueprints with a compass and ruler!) I consider myself pretty tech savvy, but things are getting to advanced for even myself! When kids get toys that I have to have them show me how to use, you know you live in a tech world! So, I was a little overwhelmed when we chose to review the new Ozobot Bit. But, the more I watch my oldest pay with his new tech friend, the more I learn and less intimidated I feel.
Ozobot Bit is a fun new robot from the makers of the original Ozobot. Many of the same features still exist, but with a few upgrades as well! Straight from the box, it looks a little confusing. There is the Ozobot robot, a case, a shell, a charger, a small instruction manual and a few little mazes etc for easy start up. I recommend putting Ozo on charge and starting with the instruction manual. Also, I would say to visit Ozobot online for a whole lot more info, lessons, printables and more before you even start to use the Ozobot. it’s very informative to get a feel for what you are up against and how much fun there is to be had from such a tiny robot!
Once the Ozobot is charged, the fun can start. I you are looking for the most simple, ready to go fun, you can start with the included maze. Ozobot can be calibrated with an included calibration sheet and then set to paper to begin. He recognizes simple color coded commands instantly knowing when to turn, spin, and more.
Once you see his moves, you will quickly want to create your own mazes! You can easily do this using paper, colored markers, and the included moves sheet to let your Ozobot run your own creative designs!
Of course for today’s kids, that may not be enough. When computers control everything, they want to be able to use the computer! Ozobot Bit has made this not only a possibility, but it takes this seemingly difficult design process to the most simple, point and click usability feature ever. With a quick visit to Ozoblockly, your kids can put their already expansive knowledge of block designs (I know they already play very similar games!) to good use. They can create moves for Ozobot from beginner to advanced level coding by simply dragging their commands into order. Once they have their design set, they follow the instructions to “load” the moves to Ozobot with a few simple clicks. No connections are even needed! This smart little robot can be held directly to the computer (or phone, tablet, etc) and it will read this code! Once finished he is ready to show his moves!
There is so much this little guy can do, It would take me days to write about it all! You have options that range from manual, to computerized, and even include fun apps for your smart phones and tablets like the Ozogroove app shown below for complete dance moves to your favorite music. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Buy one or buy multiple Ozobots and program them to work together, dance, and even race!
While this is an absolute blast, it is also an amazing learning experience that can teach coding and programming at home or even in a school environment (hello teachers! This could make the perfect addition to your curriculum!) They are a must have in our home and as my son progresses through his classes and learns more and more, I just know Ozobot Bit will be included in learning activities in our house many times in the future! Check out Ozobot on Facebook and Twitter to stay up t date on new products, apps, and more. You can also check out fun videos on Youtube to show you even more of this fun robot in action!