InkSmith is proud to announce that micro:bit V2s are back in stock and ready to ship!
The pocket-sized micro computers are one of the best ways to introduce students to coding. They're affordable and have unlimited possibilities — making them the perfect tool for teaching coding and STEM.
Due to significant supply chain delays and a global chip shortage, the popular micro:bit has been incredibly difficult to source over the past year. At InkSmith, we have been working diligently and have secured a limited supply of micro:bit V2 Single Boards and Go Packs.
What is a micro:bit?
Made by BBC, the micro:bit is a pocket-sized computer that has been developed to teach digital skills, computational thinking, and ignite curiosity and creativity in learners through coding. With five million micro:bits already in the hands of learners and users, the micro:bit has accelerated coding skills development and digital literacy in an increasingly technology-driven society.
The new micro:bit V2 has the same features as the original, but is now equipped with:
- A capacitive touch sensor that acts similarly to the touchscreen on your phone;
- A built-in microphone that adds the ability to sense and react to sound;
- A built-in speaker to play sounds without requiring additional accessories and equipment;
- Power saving mode that allows the board to be powered-down with the batteries connected; and
- More computing power so you can run AI and Machine Learning workloads.
Coding comes to life when robotics is powered by a micro:bit. There are several products and extensions that are compatible with the micro:bit, including robotics kits. Rather than watching the code on a computer screen, students can download the program onto the micro:bit, connect it to a robot and watch the results.
When it comes to EdTech tools, we can’t help but recommend our own micro:bit powered robotics kits. The k8 Modular Robotics kit is the little robot that can. This purple robot is equipped with a variety of motors and sensor that allow it to be programmed to perform various actions and activities.
The Climate Actions Kits are inventor’s kits designed to provide purpose-driven learning experiences by connecting real-world climate change issues with tangible robotics solutions. The kits come in two formats, the Land Climate Action Kit and the new Energy Climate Action Kit. Each kit was designed to incorporate the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals into the project modules.
When micro:bits are paired with accessories and hardware, students have endless possibilities and activities to build digital coding skills.
Why micro:bits are great for the classroom
Back in 2015, the British Government donated 10,000 micro:bits to students and educators to encourage STEM education and improve digital skills. In a similar move, the Canadian Government’s CanCode program donated 100,000 micro:bits to elementary schools across the country.
The benefits of this program also included educator training, which is vital for preparing to teach tech-savvy students. In as little as an hour, any teacher can learn the basics of using a micro:bit and, thanks to the numerous resources available, implement an engaging and fun coding lesson.
Using micro:bits unlock a world of potential for both students and educators. Students benefit from developing critical 21st-century digital skills, but educators also see improved classroom engagement. Students love to see and experience how their code interacts with hardware, inspiring them to pursue STEM subjects in post-secondary education.
micro:bit resources for educators
Getting started with the micro:bit has never been easier thanks to the countless resources available. To help, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite beginner tutorials from MakeCode below:
- Breaks down each of the technical features of the micro:bit and how to code them.
- Great library of more basic micro:bit coding projects.
- Brings together the micro:bit and the UN's Global Goals to provide inspiring activities for your classroom,
- Classroom resources, lessons, and professional learning.
- Basic tutorials, games, fashion, toys, science, and music projects, as well as live coding webinar videos.
Along with these resources, InkSmith also offers workshops and webinars for both educators and students.
Our Educator Training sessions are available in a variety of topics related to education technology. Sessions focus on building teacher capacity and understanding around future-focused skills and cognitive frameworks which help enhance curriculum connections.
Our Student Workshops are offered in a variety of subjects, and are a great way to get students involved in engaging, hands-on activities in the classroom. We offer in-depth sessions on specific topics like 3D printing and robotics, and workshops that focus on broader topics such as Design Thinking and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
No matter the type of workshop, students and educators alike can engage in hands-on experiential learning that exposes them to new and interesting challenges.