Author profile picture

Coding complicated? No, even 11-year-old children can do it with a micro:bit . This is a circuit board which includes two buttons and 25 LED lights. By tinkering and coding children can make things like a virtual pet or a pedometer.

In England, more than a million school children are involved in a programme which offers them such a computer, and also the Eindhoven based company NXP has joined. “The plan originates from the BBC“,says Martijn van der Linden, NXP. “They roll it out in schools all over England. NXP has established itself as a partner in this programme. This allows employees with children around eleven years old to request for such a micro:bit.”

The 25 LEDs, two buttons, Bluetooth and the compass allow for much more experiments than just the pedometer or virtual pet. Children can, for example, learn how to pause, start and stop their music. With the built-in Bluetooth, they can make a remote control for the DVD player. There are also various inputs and outputs so that sensors can be connected.

All these projects are on a website with detailed explanations and codes. After connecting the micro:bit to a ‘big’ computer or tablet, children can put other codes on the device. All this aims to teach the 11-year-olds to code and to inspire them.