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How to introduce your pre-teen to the world of robotics

By Dhrubaa Ghosh,

Help your child discover the fascinating world of robotics with these smart tips.

Robotics is all around us now, from gym equipment to food appliances and other aspects of our daily life.

Gone are the days when robotics meant building mechanical toys verging on science fiction. Robotics is all around us now, from gym equipment to food appliances, from performing surgeries to making watches. Given that robotics is going to continue its boom in the age of digital devices, getting your kid interested in it might be a great idea. Apart from being a possible career option, robotics can arouse the normal curiosity, creativity and logical thinking skills kids have. Here are some tips for to get kids above 8 but under 13 started on robotics.  

Start early 
An 8-year-old can build something with Lego blocks that we cannot imagine. So, get them building kits and robotics starter kits. Tell them how cars work, point out how tiny mechanical components of watches, mobiles, laptops have been precisely put together by robotic arms. Once you bring robotics to life for them, they would be encouraged to find out more.  

Use stories on robots and robotics  
Kids love robots. They maybe superheroes or villains, mechanical pets, smart gadgets – but robots and robotics don’t lack adventure stories. Movies, OTT series and games around robots and robotics can lead a child to wondering how a certain robotic function happened. Guide them gently towards taking up a basic course in robotics just to get to know what happens inside a robot, and if they have the knack, they will go on.  

Resort to DIY, tinkering and basic electronics 
Apart from the DIY home kits that are available for little robotics enthusiasts, fixing a broken toy or figuring out how an electronic gadget works are also good robotics starters. Challenge your kid to start an assembly they like. It could be as simple as folding paper boxes neatly. Kids think fast, so you can move them to the next stage with electronic sets or Arduino.  

Take help of theoretical learning  
Practical knowledge and theoretical knowledge are both very important in engineering and robotics. One of the best ways to teach theory is enrolling kids into basic robotics or electronics courses. You can even opt for interactive online courses on robotics for kids. Among other things, they will get to interact with instructors and other like-minded kids.