Getting to make and play with my own R2D2? Am I dreaming here? Nope and neither are you! You can embrace STEAM at home with littleBits R2D2. As part of the #ThorRagnarokEvent I participated in a group project to learn more about the R2D2 from littleBits and recieved one to review. Oh- and one to give away- details below! All nerdy STAR WARS love, however, is my own. Affliate links (if you purchase through a link, I make a little bit of money) included in this post.
You might have heard me groan rather loudly last week when I noted that the school calendar had not only an early release on Friday, but school was out on both Monday AND Tuesday following.
I love my kids, I do. I mean, they are adorable, wouldn’t you say?
But as a work from home parent, those school hours are precious, y’all! (I love you, teachers, I do I do I DO!)
Thankfully I had a fun STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) project for them to partake in that needed little oversight from me.
Look, don’t judge. I have to work my way up to the 2 weeks off at Christmas and that’s still 5 weeks away! I was not prepared for this crazy 4 1/2 day weekend that was sprung upon me.
littleBits to the rescue!
I enjoyed some hands-on?time with littleBits during a press event I attended in October. It was WAY too much fun!
You probably saw me talking about it on Twitter with #littlebits and #inventorswanted.
Frankly, when I heard we were going to play with a make-it-yourself R2D2 I kinda lost my mind.
You see, like a lot of women of a certain generation (holla, Gen Xers!) R2D2 and I go way back. He was my first droid crush as a kid.
I still dork out a little whenever we run into each other- see above. Ha!
Getting a chance to hang with a mini R2D2 was pretty cool and the littleBits team welcomed us with open arms.
We chatted about the company,?played with R2D2, and learned some interesting facts.
Did you know that 65% of grade school kids will have a job that doesn’t exist yet? Mind blown, right?
That’s why getting STEAM in front of our children is something parents need to make a priority. I’m all about this action and actively encourage my kids to participate in programs at school that fosters STEAM learning.
Part of the littleBits mission is to take the mystery out of “black box” electronics.
You can see everything inside, you can rearrange everything inside, and you can touch each part as you put it together.
No mystery here!
The color coding magnetic building blocks make building and re-building easy for most kids (ages 8-12 recommended, but my 6-year-old rocked it!).
Once you’ve put your R2D2 together, you can rest assured that reconfiguring him is pretty simple. You can also use your creativity to dress him up with included stickers.
Once you’ve created your Droid, it’s time to play. The free app allows you to drive R2D2 all over the place making noises as he goes.
The littleBits Droid Inventor Kit is a fun product and great toy for the holidays. If you have kids in the 8-12 year age range, this is something you’d want to put on their Christmas gift list!
And these Black Friday & Cyber Monday deals are pretty SWEET.
Check it out: there will be a 20% off discount on littleBits at?Amazon.com,?Walmart.com, ShopDisney.com, as well as Walmart and Disney stores nationwide from?Thursday, November 23, 2017, through Monday, November 27, 2017!
STEAM at Home With littleBits R2D2
When I pulled out the box the older kids immediately jumped out of their seats to start in on this project.
I mean, it was a combined STAR WARS and tech activity, so of course, they were down for this one!
STAR WARS is kinda a big thing over here and we’ve been talking about the new movie for weeks.
Side note:?STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI comes out on December 15, folks- grab those tickets now because you know this one is going to be good!?
I let them take over and watched as they worked together to create our R2D2 Droid.
Following along with the directions on the app made putting R2D2 together a literal snap!
What’s cool about this tech is that you can easily change things up to make your Droid do anything your imagination can come up with- and you know kids these days can come up with some brilliant ideas.
I heard my daughter saying she wanted to make R2D2 bring her a glass of water and my son decided he’d use R2D2 to take his dirty clothes to the hamper.
I said go for it- if you can dream it, you can create it as far as I’m concerned!
When we had a fully functioning Droid, I suggested they start to “dress” him with stickers.
I was ignored.
R2D2 went straight on the floor for a driving lesson. Yep- naked as the day he was born!
Don’t worry, we dressed him up later after everyone had a turn.
When we learned about littleBits at my event, I was pretty sure that my kids could make this work without too much of a struggle.
I was thrilled to see that it offered enough of a challenge to raise a few questions as they built it, but not too challenging to frustrate them.
I honestly didn’t need to step in except to tell my daughter that she needed to let her brother have a turn!
My oldest is 14 and my youngest is 6. Everyone is pretty adept with tech so it wasn’t too surprising to see that even the smallest could make R2D2 drive around.
She loved making him beep too.
littleBits Competition: Droid Inventor Kit
Check this out: littleBits is launching a global inventor movement.
Sure, they have great products that look to expand the STEAM movement but they are so much more!
Recently a new competition was announced: littleBits Competition: Droid Inventor Kit.
The competition invites people like you and me (including kids, families and STAR WARS fans) to create and share their own Droids.
The competition kicked off on November 15, 2017, and runs through January 10, 2018. Residents of the US, UK and Canada are eligible to submit their own designs.
Oh wait- there’s more! What’s a competition without celebrity judges? No competition I’d want to enter, that’s for sure!
STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI stars Daisy Ridley (Rey) and Kelly Marie Tran (Rose Tico) are judging the contest alongside Ayah Bdeir (littleBits CEO & founder) and Kathleen Kennedy (president of Lucasfilm).
Y’ALL. Look at all that GIRL POWER representing right there! Whoa.
Check out more info about the competition–and the killer prizes–here.
I can’t wait to follow along and see the amazing creations I know the STAR WARS community will put together.
You can buy your littleBits R2D2 HERE!
This one is for the teachers out there.
How would you like a littleBits R2D2 Droid in your classroom?! Cool right?
littleBits sent me an additional Droid and I’d love to pass it along to one of you!
This contest is open to any US resident who is also a teacher.
Then leave a comment below with the name of your school, which grade you teach, and your Twitter handle used in the step above.
I’ll use Random.org to generate a winner.
Contest is open November 20, 2017, at noon ET and closes on December 1, 2017, at noon ET. Winner will be notified via email.?
LITTLEBITS DROID INVENTOR KIT
Patty Holliday is a Marvel loving, Disney obsessed wife, and mother of four. She’s a travel agent specializing in Disney & Universal vacations- and loves a candid confession. Find her in Virginia (or anywhere frequent flyer miles or her trusty minivan takes her.)