Have you ever had a mechanical toy and wanted to know how it works?
Robotic toys inspire a child's curiosity and interest in STEM learning, but children are rarely encouraged to take apart a robot toy to find out why each part moves or speaks. We've found that children who build their own toys not only gain a deeper understanding of the materials. They also gain more confidence to take control of the world around them.
Part of choosing the right toys for your children is to embrace a life-long love of science and learning. This is exactly why Mecha the Mechanical Dragon Robot was designed for children over eight years old with an interest in how things work. From mechanical engineering to software programming, Mecha is designed to inspire children to truly imagine the possibilities of applied STEM and build the foundations of robotic and programmatic later lessons.
Mecha is both a mechanical dragon toy to play with and a robot that your child will build and program. Mecha the Mechanical Dragon Robot includes 2 DC motors and a drive wheel that help it to move it's mouth, flap its wings, and turn. Multiple sensors are used to detect sounds like a clap or a whistle and interact with your child in play.
When building the dragon is complete, your child can take control through a programmatic mobile app that will teach them how to program the dragon robot's behaviours and responses to interaction. Children can build, deconstruct, and rebuild the robot to gain full understanding of it's mechanical parts, while they program and reprogram its behaviour to explore robot software control.
By building and programming their own robotic toy, children will build a foundation in engineering STEM skills and a lifelong interest in mechanical and programmatic play.
The wonderful thing about Mecha the Mechanical Dragon Robot is what children learn along the way. The challenge of building a dragon robot and teaching it to respond to claps and whistles is fun in itself. But the steps required and the skills learned in making the robot are even more valuable than the finished project. Here are the STEM and developmental skills children and teens will learn when designing their own Mecha dragon.
It takes careful and logical thought to complete a robot and to program its behaviours through an app. Children will learn to apply detailed directions to a real-world project and to apply their own inherent understanding to a mechanical problem to understand the robotics. In teaching themselves to build and program the robot, each stage of the project helps a child practice their critical thinking skills.
Mechanical engineering starts by understanding how gears and motors fit together to make an object move. A mechanical dragon is cool enough, but knowing how its wings flap and where the clap-listening sensors are teach a child the real mechanics behind the modern world. Building a robot gives your child a foundation in mechanical engineering that will benefit them in later advanced classes.
Robotic systems take mechanical engineering to a new level. This explores how a motor moves a wing and has an effect. Learning robotic systems may lead to designing industrial machinery or even prosthetic limbs in applied sciences.
Once Mecha is built, the software and programmatic learning begin. Through the mobile app, your child will grasp the basics of building a program that a computer or robot responds to. They can sequence commands, change the responses to sensor stimuli, and change the program at will. This will introduce children to the basics programmatic thinking and software programming.
Building a foundation of STEM learning is always great, but Mecha's real appeal is that the dragon robot is also a fun toy and mechanical companion. Children feel like they have really achieved something when they put the robot together and get a responsive dragon toy as a reward. The app puts the power of a dragon in their hands, controlling it's robotic responses and playing games with friends controlling or responding to the robot dragon. When children get used to one set of responses, they can program another and the game begins again.
The best thing about Mecha is that children barely notice they're learning, because they're having so much fun.