Many people are scared of electronics. This is because electricity cannot be seen directly, and can be dangerous. There’s also the worry that the electronics itself might explode and burst into flames merely because our auras just do that! We need to get over that fear as electronics and robotics become more common.

Whilst electronics can be damaged, there is no reason why children from the age of about 5 or 6 years old can’t start appreciating and having fun with electronics. There are plenty of kits such as ‘Hot Wires’, that you can get for a few tens of pounds that can start them off in a safe and sane manner. The only issue at this age is that there is a need to keep replacing the LED components as the brighter they shine, the more impressive they are? The mere fact that more current through the LED means that it is more likely to be damaged sometimes takes a little time to hit home…but repair cost is about £14 for the initial soldering iron etc, and then less than a pound each time one fails. Destroying a few components is probably quite good for the learning process anyway.

For more responsible kids (and adults), the Raspberry Pi provides a perfect start to electronics, with loads of support out there for not only programming but also the electronics connected to it. There’s plenty of ‘How tos’ that are only a web search away.