I have been compensated for this post in the form of a product. All opinions are mine and mine alone. This post is sponsored by Sphero!
Let’s face it, we are becoming increasingly dependent on technology. From ordering food at a restaurant to checking out at the grocery store, computers play a large part of our everyday lives. This makes it important to me that my kids learn the basics of computers and I encourage them to learn even more advanced concepts. Like most kids, mine become more engaged with learning if they are having fun so when Sphero offered to send me a to a SPRK+ review, I couldn’t wait. I knew it would be just what I needed to get them interested in coding.
On the surface, Sphero SPRK+ is a clear ball with all of its components visible. However, this little device is so much more. The newest in the line of Sphero’s educational robots, the SPRK+ teaches kids (and some adults, me included) the fundamentals of programming through play. Using the Lightning Lab app, users can create block coding which is transmitted to the SPRK+ via Bluetooth to change the color of the lights, map out directions, adjust speeds, and more. The Lightning Lab also lets you interact with other users.
The app gives users access to hundreds of activities, many which are designed on STEM principles. (STEM is the curriculum based on the idea for teaching students in four disciplines – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Once users master certain activities, they are encouraged to learn more advanced programming.
The SPRK+ comes with a charging base with USB charging cable, maze tape, a 360 degree protractor, a sticker sheet, and a user guide. It is recommended for ages 8 and up.
- Durable UV coated polycarbonate shell
- Bluetooth Smart with a 100′ range
- Goes over 4.5 mph
- Built-in LED glow
- Inductive charging
- Over 1 hour of play on a full charge
- App and firmware updates
The SPRK+ was effortless to set up after charging. In no time, my 11-year-old was programming it. He had the ball changing colors, rolling through the house, and chasing his little sister. This doesn’t surprise me since he has been a huge Minecraft and Roblox fan for years. It won’t long before he is using the text-based programming feature. I decided to give it a try since I know absolutely nothing about programming and I was so surprised as how easy it was. Just by dragging and dropping blocks, I had the SPRK+ moving around. While my son is still more advanced than me when it comes to coding, I am slowly learning. The best part? It doesn’t even seem like learning, but more like play.
This robot is waterproof and extra tough. We have banged it into walls, dropped it, and my little one has even thrown it and you can’t even tell. The durability is one of my favorite features since my kids can be pretty tough on toys. I give the SPRK+ two thumbs up for its ability to teach kids through play. When they are rewarded with seeing their coding in motion, they are encouraged to keep learning.
You can pick up a SPRK+ for your kids from the official Sphero Store for $129.99.