Lego aims to make learning more fun with WeDo 2.0

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The Mini Milo tasks students with making their own space rover(Credit: Darren Quick/Gizmag)

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Lego Education has updated its aging WeDo robotic learning system with WeDo 2.0. Geared toward schools or parents looking to add some structured learning to playtime, it comes in kit form and is an aid to spark young students' interest in science, computing, engineering and technology subjects.

Aimed at second to fourth-grade students, WeDo 2.0 comprises a robotic kit and complementing learning materials to aid learning in a variety of subjects. For example, Mini Milo tasks students with constructing a Lego space rover while learning about the use of real-life space rovers. Another project, Drop and Rescue, requires kids to design a device to reduce the impact on humans, animals and the environment after a weather-related hazard.

Lego Education promises over 40 hours of projects and activities with each kit. The kits include 280 brick pieces and a Smart hub that interfaces with a motor, motion sensor, and tilt sensor. Connectivity comes in the form of Bluetooth LE, and the projects are programmed via iOS, Android, PC, or Mac – with Chromebook support promised later this year.

"WeDo 2.0 offers projects that let students discover the surface of Mars with a model rover, or explore the Amazon rainforest through frog metamorphosis," says Jeffrey Marlow, a Geobiologist at Harvard University and founder of The Mars Academy education and development program. "These science lessons do more than just teach students facts to memorize, they represent an immersive experience that instills a deeper understanding of the scientific method and evidence-based reasoning."

One kit that contains all the hardware for one child is priced at US$159, while an additional curriculum pack aimed at homeschooling parents or those that want to give their kids some extra tutelage after school costs $289.95. A 24-student pack, which 12 kits (hardware and software) and the curriculum, is priced just over $2,200.

WeDo 2.0 is available now.

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