With the launch of micro:bit next gen, we thought it would be useful to highlight how accessible learning is for the younger students right now. It might surprise you to learn that there is already a wealth of micro:bit accessories and free learning resources suitable for the younger students. Additionally, when creating new micro:bit accessories that require the use of the MakeCode blocks editor, we also create custom extensions designed to make coding accessible to younger learners and beginners. Details of the extensions are included either on product pages or in the learning materials provided with the product (often in the Datasheet).
At Kitronik, we pride ourselves on providing fantastic resources that are fully educational and informative. Many of the free resources we release are specifically aimed at teachers. We've even teamed up with teachers to produce lesson ready micro:bit resources that can be freely download with no paywalls or signups. Take what you need and incorporate it into your classroom activities without restriction.
10 micro:bit Products & Resources Suitable for Children Aged 8+:
Below are five products and five resource suggestions to help you get the most from your schools 30 micro:bits. There are also additional free resources for each of the products below that will be linked here also. If you haven't put in a request for your primary school to receive the free pack of 30 micro:bits, you can do so here.
We've cherry picked 5 products below suitable for the younger learner, the full list can be found here. Most products feature several learning resources, we've listed these resources with the products below.
1 - Kitronik LAB:bit educational platform for BBC micro:bit:
The Kitronik LAB:bit for the BBC microbit offers a super fun way for children to learn about coding in an engaging and hands-on way. It has been specifically designed for the classroom for KS2 computing and is backed by online MakeCode tutorials, simplified custom blocks, and a detailed getting started guide. Supplied in the box are; a battery holder (3 x AA), a wheel and tyre for the motor, and the detailed easy-to-follow guide.
It is absolutely packed with an impressive array of features and devices for easy delivery of fun and informative lessons. The resources we created specifically for the product are;
- 7 online MakeCode experiments that teach you how to create code for each area of the board, they are.
- Make your own switch.
- Making a Dice.
- Colouring a rainbow.
- Traffic lights.
- Controlling motor speed.
- Scare the micro:bit, using sound to drive LEDs.
- Parking sensor
- A Pirate ship for LAB:bit.
- Tech Talks - live stream playback.
The LAB:bit, as you can see, is well supported with resources. The LAB:bit is available as either a single pack or as a Lesson in a box Primary computing pack. The lesson in a box is supplied with a USB drive packed with teaching materials and lesson plans to help you deliver lessons all year, every year. Jump to the version that is right for your school via the buttons below;
2 - Kitronik Simple Robotics Kit for the BBC micro:bit:
Our Simple Robotics Kit is an easy build, entry level, introduction to the exciting world of robotics. Step by step build and coding instructions are included. It has been designed, from the ground up, to be simple to build by even the youngest of fingers. From its one piece cardboard chassis to its clip lead connections, everything goes together in a way that is as free from frustration as possible.
The kit of parts is accompanied by a detailed set of instructions that will not only walk you through the assembly, but it also covers the coding in detail. Even if you aren't confident or technical in nature, you will have no difficulties assembling and using this wonderful kit. Nearly everything you will need is supplied with the kit, including learning resources/guides. The additional resources we created specifically for the product are;
- How to add a servo to the Simple Robotics Kit.
- Adding ZIP Hex LEDs To The Simple Robotics Buggy Kit.
- Add Line Following to the Simple Robotics Kit.
The Simple Robotics kit is available as either a single pack or as Kitronik Lesson in a Box - Simple Robotics for the classroom. The lesson in a box is supplied with a USB drive packed with teaching materials and lesson plans to help you deliver lessons all year, every year. Jump to the version that is right for your school via the buttons below;
3 - Kitronik STOP:bit - Traffic Light for BBC micro:bit
The STOP:bit for the BBC micro:bit provides the teacher with an instantly recognisable teaching accessory. Every eight year old knows what a traffic light is and most have a solid grasp on what the lights mean. Not only does this offer the perfect platform for learning basic coding, it can also double as a road safety teaching prop to reinforce existing teaching methods.
The kit comes in two versions; a pre-built version suitable for younger learners and a kit form version for the older learners. We have produced custom MakeCode blocks to make coding accessible to younger learners, details of which can be found on the product page.
- Online MakeCode tutorials, learn how to code a;
- Teachers Lesson Plans For STOP:bit For microbit.
STOP:bit is available as either a pre-built versions or as a kit of parts. Most Primary schools will be interested in the pre-built version, just attach a micro:bit and clip the base piece on and you are good to go. Jump to the version that is right for your school via the buttons below;
4 - Kitronik LAMP:bit - Street Light for BBC micro:bit
The LAMP:bit features connections which allow the micro:bit to be bolted/clipped directly to it. It has been designed to replicate a streetlight, in form and function and it fits the same aesthetic as the STOP:bit. The board also features a phototransistor that can be used to react to changes in ambient light levels, thus switching on and off the white LED autonomously..
We have created custom code blocks for the MakeCode Editor that are available as an Extension to the editor. Details of how to add them to the editor can be found in the datasheet. The datasheet serves as a getting started guide
5 - Kitronik Simple Servos Starter Pack for BBC micro:bit
Animation not only introduces the learner to basic robotics, it's also a lot of fun. The Simple Servo Control Board offers a simple interface between the BBC micro:bit and up to 3 servos. The board features an edge connector for the micro:bit to slot into and in addition to the servo pin header connections, there are also 6 croc-clippable pads for adding additional devices.
Code it with MakeCode: Kitronik has created custom blocks for the Simple Servo board for use with MakeCode. For details on how to add these blocks, please head to the product page. The blocks simplify controlling servos, making it a suitable activity for the younger learners.
- Simple Servo Control Board - Getting Started Guide.
- Four exciting hands-on Simple Servos Starter Pack tutorials;
- Simple Servo Control Board - Datasheet.
We've cherry picked 5 additional resources below that can be used by teachers to learn from and to adapt for use in the classroom with pupils. The 5 resources below are to introduce the new user to the micro:bit, they contain general information, setup and usage guides and basic coding examples.
The 5 minute micro:bit Guide:
This small and concise guide contains all you need to get started with the micro:bit. First of all, it covers the essential topics required to get you up and running. Then, there is a quick introduction to coding with a practical example. Finally, there are a couple of links at the end to point you to more free guides to help you develop your skills.
The microbit User Guide For Absolute Beginners
This beginner's microbit user guide is a no-frills, straight to the point, collection of essential knowledge. It covers a little more ground than the 5 minute guide above, but it can still be worked through quite quickly.
You will learn how to get the micro:bit ready for use and how to write a couple of programs and then run them on the micro:bit. There is plenty more to learn than is covered here, so once you've learned the basics you can also follow the links at the end of this guide to continue learning.
Learn To Use The micro:bit... Without A micro:bit
This guide is aimed at the beginner that wants to learn but who doesn't have access to a micro:bit. It highlights how useful the micro:bit simulator is in the MakeCode editor!
Parents Guide, oldie but goodie!
This resource is a few years old now and MakeCode looks a little different, but it still holds up and can be followed. It covers a little history, how to use the micro:bit, and half a dozen coding examples to introduce the beginner to some key coding concepts.
Bonus Content - Lesson Plans:
These resources have been specifically designed to help teachers deliver lessons with as little work as possible. Devising quality resources for Teachers has always been a key part of the Kitronik product development cycle. Because the curriculum can be a complicated animal, it has also been our policy to regularly seek advice and direct input from award-winning Teachers.
- :GAME ZIP 64 Lesson Plans By Lorraine Underwood & Kitronik.
- :MOVE mini Lesson Plans By Lorraine Underwood & Kitronik.
- Free Lesson Plans For ZIP Halo By Lorraine Underwood & Kitronik.
- Teachers Lesson Plans For STOP:bit For microbit.
- Free Teachers Lesson Plan For LAMP:bit For microbit.
- Teachers Lesson Plans For ACCESS:bit For microbit.
- micro:bit accessories for 8 plus.
- Beginner micro:bit tutorials.
- Kitronik University micro:bit
- The micro:bit Educational Foundation.
- BBC Teach.
- Microsoft MakeCode Blocks Editor.
- micro:bit next gen.
- Primary School registration.
- Kitronik Newsletter.
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