How were you introduced to littleBits?
The first time we saw littleBits was through a hack week competition at work. At the time we were playing with Arduino at home, which was more of me playing and them watching. I took the littleBits kit home for a week after the competition, they were an instant hit.
What toys and tools did you grow up with?
Legos, lots and lots of Legos. My dad was also into Ham Radio before I was born. So we had lots of random electronics, all half working, around the house. That, combined with his soldering iron, led me to experiment a lot with electronics as a kid.
How have you used littleBits at home?
The boys have built everything from traps with alarms to lighting systems. The thing we love about littleBits is that it is so easy for the kids to mix and match, their imagination isn’t encumbered by which wire goes where.
What has your family made with littleBits?
The most popular combination in our house is littleBits and Legos. Recently my son has taken to combining little bits with a Lego train to make working crossing guards or “alarms” when the train is coming down the track.
“Understanding how [technology] works and building the skills to interact with it is important. It cultivates creativity and logical thinking”
What’s your kids’ favorite Bit?
Probably the buzzer, it seems to find its way into every contraption.
How has littleBits changed playtime for you and your family?
I think littleBits makes it more fun and interesting for the kids. They can not only be creative in what they build, but take it beyond “blocks” and create something that moves and interacts with them. The questions that come up when trying to incorporate a Bit is always a great opportunity to explain how and why the Bit acts like it does.
Why do you use littleBits with your kids?
I think the first step to learning is having fun. littleBits puts my boys in control of building something, it makes play and incorporating the technology with their imagination easy. As they experiment building different devices they learn about how Bits work and it allows me to explain why they work they way they do as well as how that same concept is used in everyday devices we use. In short, every time they play with littleBits they learn something new about the technology they use every day.
Why is it important for children to play/learn with littleBits?
Technology is more and more dominate in our everyday lives. Understanding how it works and building the skills to interact with it is important. It cultivates creativity and logical thinking – those skills will help them regardless of what they choose to do in their future.