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Arduino for Kids

Book Description

A cool guide to help kids develop robots and electronics

About This Book

  • Get clearly-written code with descriptions and comments that explain each code section
  • The book comes with separate code files, one entire program at a time, as well as many diagrams and separate downloadable files that contain colored photos explaining steps in the book
  • Kids can build multiple projects during the course of the book; by the end, they will have working projects of their own

Who This Book Is For

This book is for children aged 9 and up, and their parents, who may or may not have a technical background. This book is tailored around the central idea of introducing electronics as a fun and a curiosity-inducing exercise. This book can act as a bonding exercise between parent and child over a single weekend.

What You Will Learn

  • Write simple programs using variables, functions, loops, arrays, and libraries
  • Set up the Arduino and understand its internal functioning
  • Get to grips with connections in electronics and arrive at ways to connect various components yourself
  • Delve into various sensors and their selection and build your own sensor
  • Unravel the concept of resistors and capacitors along with understanding the physics of electronics
  • Become an inventor through interactive exercises (such as making a friend happy with a proximity sensor, and giving "life" to a plant)

In Detail

The mission of this book is to integrate technology with the tools that children already use for crafts so that they feel that the technology is an extension of their playtime. We use coding, sensors, and micro-controllers integrated with art and craft supplies, origami, and Playdough. There are 10 fun-filled chapters that talk to children directly, and give clear instructions for non-technical parents too.

We use Arduino as the controller of choice due to its easy availability and large community. By the end of the book, children will comfortably be able to set up their Arduino, read and understand code, manipulate code, and ultimately write their own code for projects. They will also be able to use basic sensors and know how components connect to each other. All the learning takes place with lots of colorful pictures and the circuits are neatly presented using wiring.

Style and approach

This book will show you the glamour of common and easily available sensors, so that kids and parents waste no time searching for parts. We provide simple yet fun projects with step-by-step instructions that make it easy to get hands-on.

Downloading the example code for this book. You can download the example code files for all Packt books you have purchased from your account at http://www.PacktPub.com. If you purchased this book elsewhere, you can visit http://www.PacktPub.com/support and register to have the code file.

Table of Contents

  1. Arduino for Kids
    1. Arduino for Kids
    2. Credits
    3. Foreword
    4. About the Authors
    5. About the Reviewers
    6. www.PacktPub.com
      1. Why subscribe?
    7. Customer Feedback
    8. Preface
      1. What this book covers
      2. What you need for this book
      3. Who this book is for
      4. Conventions
      5. Reader feedback
      6. Customer support
        1. Downloading the example code
        2. Errata
        3. Piracy
        4. Questions
    9. 1. The World around Us
      1. Solving problems - the best way out
      2. The beauty of taking notes
      3. The human body
      4. Summary
    10. 2. Systems and Logic
      1. What is a system?
      2. What is code?
      3. What is an algorithm?
      4. Logic
        1. How does a control structure work?
      5. What language does your Arduino Understand?
        1. What is a library?
          1. Activity - Understanding the Morse Code
        2. What is a function?
        3. What is a constant?
        4. What is a variable?
        5. What is a datatype?
        6. Application of the control structure
          1. Using loops
      6. The Arduino IDE
        1. Introduction to the Arduino IDE
        2. How to download the IDE?
        3. Verifying your first sketch
        4. Saving your first sketch
        5. Accessing your first sketch
      7. Summary
    11. 3. Components and Connections
      1. Exploring electricity
        1. Venturing into voltage
        2. Conceptualizing current
        3. Revealing the Resistance
        4. Comprehending Capacitance
      2. Understanding Series and Parallel connections
        1. Series connection
        2. Parallel connection
      3. What are sensors?
      4. Physics behind sensors
      5. Exploring common sensors
        1. Distance sensor
        2. Temperature sensor
        3. Humidity sensor
      6. Making your own sensor!
      7. Summary
    12. 4. The Magic Wand
      1. Demystifying microcontroller
        1. Memory
        2. Timers
        3. Arithmetic and logic unit
        4. Analog to Digital converters
        5. Input and output lines
        6. Registers
      2. Coding the microcontroller - the process
        1. Introduction
        2. Process
      3. Power supply
      4. Let's use the IDE
      5. Inside the working of a microcontroller
      6. Open-source hardware and software
      7. Summary
    13. 5. Hello World!
      1. Hey Arduino! Let's get to work
      2. Get the LEDs working
      3. Testing an external influence on LEDs - pushbutton switch
      4. Hi Computer, I’m Arduino! - Using serial communication to make your Arduino talk
      5. Light sensitivity sensor - LDR
      6. Summary
    14. 6. Safety Box
      1. Don't touch my stuff!
      2. What you will need
      3. Let's get to work!
      4. I/O pins
      5. It's all about the logic
      6. This is key!
      7. The working
        1. Conclusion
      8. Make some noise!
      9. The safe
      10. Summary
    15. 7. Make a Friend
      1. Giving life to your toys
      2. Psst...come closer...
        1. Sensing the closeness in reality
      3. Let's get to work!
      4. Digging deep into Arduino libraries
        1. Downloading and installing an Arduino Library
        2. Initializing the Library
        3. Using library functions
      5. Getting familiar with the sensor
      6. Say hello to my little friend!
      7. Summary
    16. 8. Save Energy
      1. Automation? What's that?
      2. Detecting light
      3. Let's get to work!
      4. Reading analog data
        1. ADC to the rescue!
        2. The analogRead() function
      5. Wait, we need voltage!
        1. Coding your way to light!
      6. Let there be light!
      7. The hut that comes to life at night!
      8. Summary
    17. 9. High 5!
      1. You deserve a high 5!
      2. What you will need
      3. Motors and movement
      4. Let's get to work!
        1. The servo library
        2. Getting familiar with the servo
          1. Understanding the code
      5. High five!
      6. Summary
    18. 10. Plant, Meet Arduino!
      1. Making your plants talk
      2. What you will need
      3. I'm thirsty!
      4. Measuring the conductivity of soil
        1. Example of multimeter probes
        2. Let's get started!
      5. Summary