Robotics Toys

Do you want your kid to learn robotics? This is not hard. Your kid will build robots and develop his or her mind. Stay here to learn more about this fascinating discipline.


I’m a lover of vintage educational toys, I admit that. Yet, these days there is nothing like a robotics kit to educate and entertain the young.  

The world is changing so fast, that the skills set one needs to make it through are not the same they were a few years ago.  

I would like to suggest, though, that there is one skill that will prevail for ages. It will bring blessings to those who master it.  

It is a skill that was present since the days of Nikola Tesla and remains valid until these quarantine days.  

Learning Skills, especially if you can become a self-taught person.  

The thing is this skill is very rare and hard to develop, as the whole system these days works to impose ways and forms.  

But…  

There is still hope. You still can surf the internet and find tutorials for everything. And following those tutorials is what sparks the self-teaching spirit.  

As a partisan of this idea, there is nothing like an educative robotics kit to become a self-taught person. Even in a regular day job, these skills are always valued.  

This is why today I want to give you some recommendations of the best robotics kits out there for kids and adults.  

The one thing that surprises me about these kits, is that you can start learning while you play. I’m sure you’ll enjoy these kits and the skills they will help you develop.  

What are the best robotic kits?

Educational Robotics Kits for Kids

Educational Robotics Kits for Adults

How Do I Teach my Child Robotics?

Kid building robot

While there are a bunch of books you can try to do this, there is nothing like a robot to teach robotics.  

Of course that robots could be very expensive, so this is where robotics kits come to save the day.  

Robotics kits used to be expensive toys a few years ago, but today you can find some of the top rated for less than $100 USD.  

The ones presented on this page are exactly that. Educational tools that kids can use to learn to master robotics.  

And the thing with robotics is that it involves several engineering skills.  

On one side we have electronics, which are essential to give life to your creation.  

Mechanics play a crucial role as well, since your robot needs a body, wheels to move, grips to grab things, and so on.  

Coding as well is plays a huge role in robotics, as the code are the instructions you want your robot to follow.  

All these are the foundation of robotics. This is why there is nothing like a robotics kit to learn about electronics, mechanics, and coding.

What is Robotics and Coding?

Dad and kid coding a robot

From all three, coding may seem the most intimidating for most people. The truth is that coding is one of the easiest skills to learn these days.  

There are so many tools you can use to start coding that it is incredible that most people still wonder about this.  

Coding itself can help you build a lucrative career. The world will need more coders as technology moves forward. And since that seems to be the direction of the world, learning to code should be mandatory in every school.  

The beauty of coding is it teaches a person how to think. We as humans don’t think of how our thoughts very often, or why our thoughts are the way they are. But coding helps us make ourselves that question and build things from there.  

If I may, this has philosophical benefits too.  

I know it may sound complex, but it is simpler than it sounds. It is pretty interesting and an exciting field to anyone.  

If you are curious about this, I invite you to visit a place called code.org. This website has a bunch of references and tools that even kids can use today for free.  

But, there is nothing like apply code to a physical thing and see how it moves, what it does, how it responds. That is such an eye opener when you do it for the first time.  

And for this is that robotics kits are the number one thing in your to get list.  

What is the Best Coding Robot for Kids?

Kids having fun with robots

It is hard to say which among all the available is the best, as all kits have something unique to offer.  

But…  

I like any kit that comes with everything you need to assemble it inside the box. And of course, a kit that shows you the way mechanics, electronics, and coding interact.  

This is why I included several on this page. All these are educational kits that will help people learn robotics.  

Now…  

If you want me to choose one over all the others, I would go with UBTECH JIMU Robot Builderbots Series.  

UBTECH JIMU Robot Builderbots Series

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UBTECH JIMU Robot Builderbots Series

  • Introducing buildable, codable Robots from UBTECH Robotics construct DozerBot, DirtBot or design your own JIMU Robot creation.
  • Learn to use Blockly coding to program your robot to navigate obstacles, carry objects, create color effects and more.
  • Test your skills with new Blockly coding challenges
  • Create entirely new, custom actions with the PRP (pose, record, play) function.
  • No tools required – our 3D, 360° animated building instructions walk you through the steps.
  • Includes 410 snap-together parts, 2 smooth motion robotic servo motors, 2 DC motor, 1 ultrasonic sensor & rag light, 1 main control box. USB cable and quick start guide included.
  • Free app! Works with both Android and Apple Smart devices. A compatible iOS or Android device is required.
  • JIMU Robot is the award-winning interactive robotic building block system for ages 8 and up. Awards include Tillywig 2018 Brain Child Award, CES 2017 Innovation Awards honoree, Time to Play Magazine 2016 holiday most wanted list, and IFA awards 2015 best of show.

Pros

  • Involves mechanics, electronics, and coding
  • Coding is done using blocks
  • Does not require tools
  • Low price considering all you get

Cons

  • Only 2 ways to build the model

The reason I chose this one is because it requires kids to code the instructions you give to the robot. So if the robot will do something, you first have to put some code into it.  

What is great about it is that it uses a form of code in blocks, which is pretty intuitive and appealing to the eye.  

This means it is not complicated and it does a great job in teaching kids how to code, and the logic behind coding.  

The logic behind coding is the most important skill to develop for any coder. Knowing how to break down a problem and bring a solution, is the ultimate skill for coding.  

When you have these steps, it is easy to apply the piece of code each one requires to solve the puzzle.  

And this is exactly what this kit will teach your kids. Not to mention that it is a Lego-type toy and it is super fun to assemble.  

It has 410 different parts and you can build at least 2 suggested robot versions. But imagination will set the limits here.  

Since this is a programmable kit, it is far more interesting than other toys that will do the same thing always.  

Here are other models from UBTECH in case you want to explore possibilities. All these operate under the same principle but give your child the option to build more things.

For kids, other interesting options I found are these.

The Mech-5 from Teach Tech

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Elenco Teach Tech “Mech-5”

  • Mech-5 is a one-of-a-kind Mechanical Coding Robot.
  • This mission-based, entry level robot is designed to inspire young engineers to learn about mechanical engineering principles and coding basics.
  • This stem robot can throw, lift, kick, draw, and more, All by snapping the Coding buttons onto the Coding wheel.
  • Build it. Code it. Watch it move!
  • Learn by doing. Geared toward future engineers ages 10+.

Pros

  • Involves mechanics and coding
  • Coding is done using mechanical blocks
  • Does not require tools
  • Low Price

Cons

  • Only 5 ways to build the model

This robot is a programmable one, but the way you program it is not what you’d expect. Coding this robot involves assembling different parts on the core of the robot. Each piece assembled gives an instruction to the robot, and that is how it knows what to do.  

This is a different form of coding that results very intuitive and educative as well.   The robot as well needs assembly and that is part of the fun with the kits.

AoHu 12-in-1 Science Solar Robot Kit for Kids

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AoHu 12-in-1 Science Solar Robot Kit for Kids

  • ☼☼〖12 different types of robots〗: This science kits contains 190 pieces parts including pistons, shaft, gears, tires, etc. Kids can use their imagination and creativity to create 12 different types of building robots, these real working robots can move on land or water, it is attractive, challenging and creative for kids.
  • ☼☼〖Powered by The Sun〗:No battery required. The robot kit includes a solar panel that powers the positive and negative cables. It collects solar thermal energy into an electric drive motor to support the robot’s smooth crawling. The kids will build a truly working solar motor that allows the robot to walk freely in sunlight, which will allow kids to understand the the role of solar energy, know the environmental concepts of renewable technologies and renewable resources.
  • ☼☼〖STEM Education Through Play〗: This is a good STEM educational toy. It can not only teach kids how to use solar energy to design robots, but also allow kids to experience and understand renewable energy while playing, let kids be curious and yearn for science and robotics. This STEM toy also lets your little boy or girl know about engineering, robotics and mechanics, enhances logical skills and critical thinking, bringing countless happy hours to your little engineer!
  • ☼☼〖DIY Assembly Creative Ability〗: We provide detailed information on 12 different types of robots design guides from level 1 to level 2, are perfect for boys and girls over 8 years old. In the process of assembling building set, children can experience the joy and accomplishment brought by continual conquest, which will help the children’s creative thinking ability. Great robot kit toys encourage your kids to learn through games, many possibilities are waiting for our little builders!
  • ☼☼〖Great Creative Gifts〗:It’s an educational toy set which is great for kids training their hand-on skills and creativity. To build it with your children, family or friends to experience the pleasure of DIY. It will good for kids hands & brain development, enhance the relationship between parents and children. In addition, it can be a geat gift for birthday/Christmas/Children’s day/summer camp activities, or a good choice for someone who are DIY Lovers.

Pros

  • Involves mechanics
  • 12 different ways to assemble
  • Does not require tools
  • Low Price

Cons

  • Does not involve coding

This model here is one of the most versatile of all. It is a 12 in 1 educational robot kit. This means you can assemble 12 different robots with the pieces inside the box.  

The price is not bad, as it is less than 50 USD as of the writing of this post.  It works with a solar cell, and it is one of the best solar robot kits in the market.  

The instructions you need to build these robots are inside the box.  

I would say the only downside of this kit is that is not programmable. So no coding involved. I see this as a downside because I can’t stress enough the importance of your kid learning to code right now.  

Other than that, it is a super fun kit to have fun with.

14-in-1 Educational Solar Robot 

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14-in-1 Educational Solar Robot

  • BUILD AND TRANSFORM A ROBOT – The 14-in-1 Educational Solar Robot kit allows your future engineer to build a robot and transform it to 14 different robot modes, with unique movements and designs. The robot can be changed from a running beetle, to a rowing boat, to a walking crab, or even to a zombie-chaser.
  • CHALLENGE AND EDUCATE – Curious learners will be challenged with building and interacting with the 14 different robot designs and functions. Boys and girls will learn about solar energy and robotics from the comfort of their home or classroom- while having tons of fun. This kit includes educational instructions and two levels of complexity for the robot builds.
  • POWERED BY THE SUN – With alternative energy playing such a pivotal role, there is no better time than now to start children on the path to learning basic concepts behind robotics and renewable energy resources. Fortunately, this product is powered by the sun, so there are no batteries required. The robot moves in the direct sunlight and allows kids to create and use their infinite imagination.
  • WORKS ON LAND OR IN WATER – The robot has modes that work in both the land or in water. Some modes will walk or crawl and others will float or swim. Explore mechanics and science on your tabletop, floor, pool or bathtub. Switch up your environment keeps this toy interesting for your child or student.
  • S.T.E.M. LEARNING – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics; rather than teach the four methods as separate and individual subjects, STEM consolidates them into an interconnected learning standard based on real-world applications. Each Build-Your-Own Robot Kit is a working model that demonstrates STEM concepts for ages 10 and up.

Pros

  • Involves mechanics
  • 14 different ways to assemble
  • Does not require tools
  • Low Price

Cons

  • Does not involve coding

Here is another 14 in 1 educational solar robot kit. It comes with everything you need to build 14 different models inside the box.  

Like the previous model, it works with solar energy, which is great since you won’t need any batteries.  

The kit needs assembly so this will be part of the fun with it.  

This kit is not programmable so no coding for it. I see this as a downside but that makes it more suitable for kids.  

The reason I say this could be a downside is because coding is an essential part of robotics kits. And you kids should be learning this as soon as possible.  

Right here on this page I have mentioned other kits that are programmable and perfect for kids as well.

What is the Best Coding Robot?

Code for a robot

If you are looking for things that are a bit more advanced, then your pocket may start feeling the impact.  

There are robotics kits that can be in the thousands of dollars price range. If your budget allows it, you’ll have a great time coding those.  

But…  

Most of those robots come prebuilt and part of the fun is missing in these cases.  

This is why I find far more enjoyable a kit that also makes you build something.  

Now…  

If we are looking for the best coding robot kit and perfect for beginners, we have the Arduino boards.  

Arduino is an open-source board and has everything you may need for any size project. You can build anything with garbage and attach an Arduino board and that garbage will come to life.  

Arduino uses a C language for coding, so while it can seem a bit intimidating, it is very fun to play with. I have to say Arduino focuses more on electronics and coding. Yet these boards and kits are pure gold when speaking about STEM and education.  

Every year Arduino develops, improves, and make more accessible more tools for everyone.  

If you want to explore Arduino boards, your best option is to go with the starters kit. You’ll have to do some assembly of electronic components but this is all part of the fun.

Arduino Starter Kit 

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Arduino Starter Kit

  • It’s a quick and easy way to get started with the learning of STEAM subjects at home, and it can be used to think critically, learn collaboratively, and solve problems.
  • This kit walks you through the basics of Arduino and electronics in a hands-on way. No prior experience is required, as the kit introduces both coding and electronics through fun, engaging, and hands-on projects.
  • The kit comes with a 170-page project guide book and includes over 100 components.
  • You’ll be able to build 15 different projects using components that let you control the physical world with different kinds of sensors and actuators.
  • Plenty of free activities and materials are available online, along with lots of inspirational tutorials and videos that mean you can continue using the kit in creative ways even after you’ve completed the projects..

Pros

  • Best Kit starter for any project
  • Instructions for 15 different projects
  • Scalable to any level
  • Comes with over 100 components

Cons

  • Does not involves much mechanics
  • May seem a bit expensive (although here is with a discount)

You may find this kit a bit limited as it is not a robotics kit per se, but a board that you can use to attach to something else.  

If this is your case, then that is why I’m including some options for you that are a lot like Arduino and are robotics kits.  

In some cases these may be a bit more expensive but everything you need to build a robot comes inside the box.  

But…  

I want you to know that Arduino is the perfect choice if you want to build something else than a kit. If you have a home project and want to add life to it, Arduino is the best choice.  

Let’s go to the other robotics kits and learn more about them.

ELEGOO UNO R3 Project Smart Robot Car Kit V 3.0 

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ELEGOO UNO R3 Project Smart Robot Car Kit V 3.0

  • ELEGOO Smart Robot Car: An educational STEM kit beginners (kids) to get hands-on experience about programming, electronics assembling and robotics knowledge. It is an integration solution for robotics learning and made for education.
  • Complete Package: Contains 24 kinds of module parts including obstacle avoidance, line tracing module, infrared remote control and also you can control it via phone and tablets of Android and iOS system, etc.
  • Easy to Assemble: All the module interface has been modified with XH2. 54 ports as to make it much easier and convenient to assemble the car and reduce the chances for errors.
  • Refined Tutorial in CD: HD rendering instructions on how to assemble the robot car from scratch and all the necessary programs and codes are included.
  • Upgraded Package Design: More minimalism design and make it a perfect gift for your kids and friends. Note:(Applicable Age : 12+)To use Elegoo starter kits requires basic electronic knowledge. If the user has no experience, it would be better to have someone lead and teach them while studying.

Pros

  • Great Kit for starters
  • Detailed assembly instructions
  • Compatible with Arduino

Cons

  • Just 1 project

This is one of the top rated kits out there. ELEGOO UNO R3 is a kit that will allow you to assemble a car that do a bunch of things.  

Among its abilities are following a black line (this is a classic one in robotics) and avoid obstacles.  

It can follow instructions from an app on your smartphone, via bluetooth, or a remote control.  

Programming this one is very easy, and the board is compatible with Arduino, so you can expand a bit your options.  

It uses 2 AA batteries and the instructions you need for assembly and coding are inside the package.  

This is a must have if you want to start with coding robots.

OSOYOO Robot Car Starter Kit for Arduino UNO R3

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OSOYOO Robot Car Starter Kit for R3

  • SIMPLE, EDUCATIONAL, FUN PROJECT — Control your OSOYOO Robot Car V2.0 System by Android and iOS App, allowing many additional functions such as imitation driving, WiFi controlled auto driving and battle bots (must purchase at least two kits). This intelligent, new technology supports various projects such as line tracking, object motion following, obstacle avoidance and gravity sensing control.
  • PROGRAMMABLE STARTER KIT FOR KIDS, TEENS, ADULTS AND PROFESSIONALS – The OSOYOO Robot Car Kit V2.0 is fully compatible with R3 board. Great for any skill level — whether you’re a pro, enthusiast, or a beginner, assembling your new robotic car kit will help you learn to create circuits, program sensors and actuators, learn about the Internet of Things (IoT) and get hands-on programming, coding, electronics and robotics experience.
  • THE BEST VALUE PACK — This Ultimate Gift Bundle Includes Everything You Need To Build and Engineer Your Own Robotic Car: Basic Board, USB Cable, Model X Motor Driver Module, WiFi Shield, Bluetooth Module, Ultrasonic Sensor & Holder, Servo Motor, 5 Line Tracking Modules, 2 Obstacle Sensors, Buzzer Sensor Module, Infrared IR Remote, Receiver, & Transmitter, 18650 Battery Box, battery and charger, Voltage Meter, 2 Piece Acrylic Car Chassis, 4 Motors & Metal Motor Holders, 4 Wheels
  • MORE THAN THE BASICS: ADDITIONAL ACCESSORIES INCLUDED IN DIY ROBOTIC STEM SET — 2 8-Pin Female to Female Jumper Wires (20 cm), 2 20-Pin Male to Female Jumpers (20 cm), 1 Male to 5 Female Jumper Wire, 3-Pin Female to Female Jumper, 6 Pin Male to Female Jumper, Screws & Nuts for Sensor and Module Assembly, Philips Screwdriver, Basic Tutorial CD with Video, Pictures, Sample Project Code, & Step-by-Step Instructions. Designed for Easy Assembly and Great Performance
  • GROWS WITH YOUR KIDS – OSOYOO Robot Car Kit for Arduino is a perfect gift for your kids who are interested in programming, robotics, electronics, or mechanical design as it can improve logical thinking, mechanical, and electrical abilities of your kids and let your kids learn how to build and program fully-functional robots

Pros

  • Premium Aluminium Construction
  • Detailed assembly instructions
  • Graphical, Arduino, and Python programming
  • 10 different projects

Cons

  • Just 1 project

Here is another top rated robot car for beginners that will take you through many stages of robotics.  

It requires assembly and mounting everything where it belongs.  

This educational robotics car kit has everything you need to start with robotics.  

It is compatible with Arduino, and all the instructions you need are inside the package.  

This robot car can follow a line, as it has 5 different modules to do that. It can also avoid obstacles, and you can get creative with this as you program more and more options.  

You can control the robot using your smartphone via bluetooth, a remote control, or via WiFi.

Makeblock DIY Ultimate Robot Kit

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Makeblock DIY Ultimate Robot Kit

  • Ten building forms will meet all your need for different application scenes – Robotic Arm Tank, Robotic Bartender, etc.
  • Great for learning robotics, electronics, graphical programming, Arduino programming and Python programming;
  • Anodized 6061 aluminum mechanical parts with threaded-slot design brings an easy way of building the robot;
  • Three powerful encoder motors enable you to feel every step of the robot;
  • Wirelessly control your robot with smart devices through Bluetooth connection.
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Makeblock mBot Ultimate Robot Kit - Premium Quality - 10-in-1 Robot - STEM Education - Arduino - Scratch 2.0 - Programmable Robot Kit for Kids to Learn Coding, Robotics and Electronics
  • Ten building forms will meet all your need for different application scenes - Robotic Arm Tank, Robotic Bartender, etc.
  • Great for learning robotics, electronics, graphical programming, Arduino programming and Python programming;
  • Anodized 6061 aluminum mechanical parts with threaded-slot design brings an easy way of building the robot;
  • Three powerful encoder motors enable you to feel every step of the robot;
  • Wirelessly control your robot with smart devices through Bluetooth connection.

Here is another cool option for a robotics kit. This is the 10 in 1 Makeblock DIY Ultimate Robot Kit.  

To begin with, the price of this kit is a bit higher than the ones you saw on this page. Yet the quality of it and everything it does justifies its price.  

To begin with, you are getting 10 different options to assemble this robot.  

Learning to code is fantastic with this kit. You can program it using Scratch (a graphical programming language), Arduino and Python.  

Most things these days work using Python and a version of the Arduino language. And this is why this kit definitely delivers regardless of its price.  

Something else you have to know is that some pieces of this kit are aluminium, which adds strength to your robot.  

This means it can do more than follow a line and avoid obstacles. It can carry objects.  

You can control this robot using bluetooth devices.  

This is definitely one of the best robotics kit I have ever seen. The anodized aluminium parts make this a premium item.

Closing Thoughts About these Robotics Kits

Different parts of a robot

I am an engineer, and I remember when I first used Arduino boards or other options to build my own robots.  

I remember the initial feeling, it was intimidating. Yet I was 17 at the time. If you start your kids in this and present the task as play, the moment they start building they’ll love it.  

I would say as well that coding was the most intimidating part, but again, this is the magic behind these kits. They make everything look so simple.  

Besides, the options I presented to program with blocks make this even easier and fun to start with.

And even if you are 30 or 90 (I’m in my 30s right now), these kits are super easy to follow and will teach you a bunch of things. Especially things you once thought were challenging.  

I definitely recommend these kits to anyone as there is no reason to not start with them right now.  

Have fun learning and let me know if you have any comments or questions.