Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Fall 2017 Toys
Ages: 12 & Up
Price: $49.95

Snapino, from Elenco, is the next step in Snap Circuit programming. Kids who have experience with building basic electric and electronic Snap Circuits will welcome the opportunity to create programmable circuitry using the Snapino module, which integrates an Arduino board into the foolproof circuitry experience.

Snapino is more flexible and arguably more challenging than the basic Snap Circuits. The Snapino set includes the basic battery, resistor, switch, and LED pieces that form the foundations of Snap Circuits, and it is compatible with other Snap Circuit pieces. The manual provides a concise but informative introduction to electric circuits. The Snapino module, however, connects to a required PC or Mac, and expects the student to be willing to take the leap into computer programming.

The programs associated with the Snapino module are pre-written, so new students can connect and run the operations with no prior programming experience. The manual includes instructions on basic program modifications related to the circuit (for example, students can change the blink rate of an LED or adjust the sensitivity of a phototransistor), but programmers are never encouraged to start from scratch to create truly original circuits. Experienced programmers would be better served by working with an actual Arduino board than with the Snapino module; this unit is ideal for those who are comfortable with Snap Circuits but only ready to begin computer interaction.

Emily Crawford   ©2017 Parents' Choice
Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master's in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Look for this product at:
Elenco Electronics, Inc.

Share This