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Lower Age: 12+
Price: $49.95
Year Added: 2017

Snapino is a basic circuit design kit which gives children ages 12 and up a basic introduction to circuits and coding. The kit includes a “Snapino” Arduino board which uses free software from the Arduino website, three LEDs, a light sensor, a resistor, and several wires. Additional parts and programs can be found on the Snap Circuits website. With these components, children are guided through the creation of different circuits. Throughout twenty different projects, children build with the physical Snap Circuit components and practice basic coding with the Arduino board and software. Each project comes with a note that describes what the circuit is doing and how it works. There are also several pages that list the different Snapino parts, such as resistors, phototransistors, and the LEDs. The booklet also illustrates what each of the parts do, introduces the concept of electricity, provides a brief summary of what to do and not do while building circuits, and gives children handy tips for troubleshooting. This toy is a great introduction to the Arduino microcontroller, and children can learn a great deal about coding, computational thinking, and problem solving from the included coding and circuit design activities.


Engineering thinking and design practices the gift encourages children to do or learn about: Define a problem, ask questions about the problem, make observations, learn about the problem, idea generation, plan a solution, try the solution, create a prototype or process, test the solution, analyze a solution, redesign a solution, make improvements to their solution, refine ideas, apply mathematics


Engineering text or context explicitly provided by the gift: Criteria


Additional practices and skills needed by engineers that were addressed by the gift: Spatial reasoning skills, coding, programming



Overall ratings:

  • Children Reviews
    • Rating:  4.6 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “I liked everything about it.” M, 8
  • Parents Reviews
    • Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “I like that it teaches coding, critical thinking, experimenting, problem solving, and more.” parent of 8-year-old
  • Engineering & STEM Experts Reviews
    • Rating: 4.25 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “This toy is exactly what I would want from Snap Circuits. It allows you to program and use the full power of the arduino. I wish it came with more parts but it can be combined with other Snap Circuit sets. Some good things: It can be powered by computer, it has its first program already on it, and is extremely expandable. Unfortunately, it only has 2 LED's and a photodiode.”
      • “This toy is a great introduction to coding and using an Arduino board. It guides children through 20 projects using the snap circuits and teaches them how circuits work and how to code.“