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Middle School Programs

Middle SchoolOur proven line of microcontroller and robotics kits and tutorials offer you the flexibility to equip your Middle School learning environment for guaranteed success. Whether your students are beginners, or are already familiar with programming, we have the right tools for your unique classroom. Parallax’s educational kits foster skill development through individualized learning practices, as well as through collaborative group projects and competitions.  Our wealth of online resources and an ever-growing educational community are a strong foundation to our quality hardware and software options

For students who may benefit from learning programming fundamentals before focusing on the often-challenging concept of language and syntax, we offer the BlocklyProp visual programming tool. Our introduction of BlocklyProp has really helped make a difference in student engagement and understanding, and it has made electronics education accessible to so many more students than ever before.  Code is presented as a series of connectable blocks, which when linked together in series, have a designed logic that is easy to follow and understand.   BlocklyProp can also bridge the gap between in-school and at-home activities, as work is saved online and can be accessed from anywhere internet access is available.

Transferable Skills with BlocklyProp

If you’re considering the BlocklyProp programming route, there are several kit options to choose from: 

  • The Scribbler 3 (S3) robot is a robust and easy to use BlocklyProp-compatible platform that is great for beginners.  It is ready to go out of the box and comes with a few examples pre-programmed so you and your students can get started right away  
  • The ActivityBot robot can be programmed in BlocklyProp and C, with parallel tutorials for each that make transitioning from a visual language to a text-based language simple and comfortable.
  • If you’re more interested in microcontroller studies over robotics, our Propeller FLiP Try-it kit is a great learning tool for prototyping and inventing.

Whichever route you choose, your students will receive practical knowledge that sets the stage for authentic future success in the 21st century.

Programming Kits for Text-Based Languages

Are your students already familiar with programming? We have kits and tutorials for middle school students in Propeller C, PBASIC, or Arduino languages.  

  • As mentioned previously, the ActivityBot Robot is programmable in BlocklyProp or in C, and is our most flexible robotics kit. It has a full online tutorial series for both languages and comes with all of the parts needed to complete them. A wealth of additional projects and tutorials beyond the basic text give you options to meet the needs of every student in your class.
  • The Boe-Bot Rrobot is programmed in the simple PBASIC language and comes with a physical textbook and full kit of parts to accompany it.
  • Our Arduino Shield-Bot robot has an Arduino Uno brain, full kit of electronic parts, and an online or physical textbook with plenty of activities to engage your students.  

Unlike the Scribbler 3 robot, these three robotic platforms feature open breadboards for customization and prototyping.  Accessories can be added to the circuit boards to expand their capabilities.  This open design grants the robotic platform more modular versatility in learning environments. 

Our modern, hands-on approach to educational robotics helps students experience programming in a tangible way, building future skills and practical knowledge while ensuring they stay engaged in the classroom.