Robotics Kit? (Science project with kid)


Apr 13, 2005
Looked around and this seemed like the proper subforum... I'm looking for a decent brand of entry-level robotics kit that I can do with my kid for her 6th grade science project. (Her choice - but she picked out a $500 kit...)

I have no experience with these things. I can confidently lego the whole thing together, wire it, etc... but she's going to have to figure out how to program it (she already codes through school and roblox).

Anyone have experience / advice?

(Especially about what brand is 'good' and which to avoid).

she already codes through school and roblox).
have you seen that? 'cause i would put heavy quotes around "codes with school and roblox" eveything at the k-8s i was in, everything that was call "programming/coding" was wysiwig/point and click crap.
mindstorm is a good option, maybe mbot/mega or a sillbird kit.
What are you trying to do with it? Most kits are junk compared to just buying some servos, motors, and going at it.

What microcontroller are you trying to use or what does she know how to code? An arduino is pretty manageable at a simple level if you dont have to do too much with it. Even easier to just grab a controller and receiver to use with the servers and motors and do no programming.
Second the PC board suggestion

A nice pi or something. You can get kits with a billion types or sensors, temperature, moisture, light and so on. Some python and you're good to go
Wow - thanks for the responses; more to think about than I expected. I suspect the easy route would be something Raspberry Pi based... but I could be wrong.
I would recommend going the Arduino route, it is very customizable and can do a lot. It does require coding.
Maybe LEGO Mindstorms? Those seem to be good for beginners.
I still have my original mindstorms bricks. I love that thing. The software used to program the bricks was super easy for kids to understand as well.

I have no idea what it's like in 2021 though, mine was the original from back in the mid-2000's.
I still have my Mindstorms (RCX v1) set and two of the expansion sets. I have not used any of the newer systems, but I would suggest a Lego set first.

While I was never involved with FIRST robotics in high school, I was a mentor for a local team ten years later. It was a worth wild experience.