Best robotics kits for teachers, schools, and students in 2024

Robot Kits

In today’s tech-driven world, equipping students with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) skills is crucial. Robotics kits provide an engaging and hands-on way to introduce students to these core concepts. Students develop critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaboration skills by building, programming, and troubleshooting robots.

Robotics education has gained significant momentum in recent years, offering an engaging platform for students to develop programming, engineering, and problem-solving skills. With many robotics kits available, choosing the right one for educational institutions can be daunting.

Here’s a deep dive into some of the best robotics kits for schools and their pros and cons to help you choose the perfect fit for your classroom.

Why Use Robotics Kits in Schools?

  • Interactive Learning: Robotics kits transform abstract concepts into tangible experiences. Students learn by doing, making STEM principles more engaging and relatable.
  • Develops 21st Century Skills: Building and programming robots fosters creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaboration – essential skills for future success.
  • Boosts Confidence: The sense of accomplishment from completing a robotics project can significantly improve student confidence and self-esteem.
  • Prepares for the Future: Robotics is rapidly changing the world. Exposing students to robotics early on ignites their passion for STEM fields and prepares them for future careers.

This comprehensive guide delves into some of the top robotics kits suitable for teachers, schools, and students, ranging from elementary to high school levels.

1. Vex Robotics Kits: A Versatile Learning Tool

Vex Robotics Kits are designed to introduce students to robotics concepts through hands-on building and programming. They come in various levels, from elementary school to college, and can be used for competition and classroom instruction.

Here are some of the different Vex Robotics Kits available:

a. Vex 123

The Vex 123 kit is an excellent entry point into robotics education, particularly for early elementary students. Its compact size and intuitive programming interface offer a hands-on introduction to coding concepts. Students can program the robot using simple commands, making it suitable for grades as low as first or second.


  • Early coding Introduction: Vex 123 excels at introducing basic coding concepts to children as young as four. Using physical buttons and cards instead of screens makes coding tangible and engaging for young minds.
  • Hands-on Learning: Vex 123 promotes a hands-on approach to learning. Kids build the robot and then physically interact with it to understand the cause-and-effect of their coding sequences.
  • Multiple Learning Styles: Vex 123 caters to different learning styles. Kids can start with pushing buttons, then progress to coding cards and eventually a tablet app, allowing them to learn at their own pace.
  • Social-Emotional Learning: Working with Vex 123 can encourage collaboration and social-emotional skills like turn-taking, communication, and problem-solving.
  • Curriculum Integration: Vex 123 can be used alongside existing curriculums to reinforce foundational literacy and mathematical thinking skills.


  • Limited Functionality: Vex 123 is designed for beginners and has limited functionalities compared to more advanced robotics kits. It won’t offer complex coding challenges for older children.
  • Cost: The initial investment in a Vex 123 robot can be higher than some simpler coding toys.
  • Durability: While Vex products are generally known for durability, some users have expressed concerns about the sturdiness of Vex 123 for very young children.

b. Vex GO

Designed for collaborative learning among two to three students, the Vex GO kit provides a more comprehensive robotics experience. Various sensors, motors, and a user-friendly programming interface allow students to explore engineering concepts while honing their coding skills. The kit has a structured curriculum aligned with educational standards, making it suitable for elementary classrooms.


  • Great Entry Point to Robotics: Vex GO is an affordable and accessible introduction to robotics for elementary school students. The easy-to-use snap-together parts and simpler build options make it less intimidating than more complex kits.
  • Strong Curriculum Integration: Vex GO aligns well with elementary school curriculums, allowing teachers to integrate STEM learning into various subjects. There are project guides and lesson plans available to support this.
  • Develops Problem-Solving Skills: Building and programming Vex GO robots encourages critical thinking and problem-solving as children experiment with different designs and code sequences.
  • Creativity and Imagination: Vex GO offers a good amount of creative freedom within its range of parts. Kids can build various robots and use their imagination to develop different functionalities.
  • Social Learning: Vex GO projects can be fun, collaborative activities that foster teamwork and communication skills as children work together to build and program their robots.


  • Limited Complexity: Vex GO offers a simpler building and programming experience than higher-level Vex Robotics kits. This might not be enough of a challenge for older or more advanced students.
  • Fewer Sensors: Vex GO uses a limited set of sensors compared to more advanced kits. This restricts the types of functionalities and interactions robots can perform.
  • Less Competitive: Vex GO robots are not designed for intense robotics competitions. A higher-level Vex kit might be a better choice if your child is interested in competitive robotics.
  • Limited Reusability: While Vex parts are generally reusable, some of the simpler Vex GO parts might be less versatile for building more complex robots in the future.

c. Vex IQ

Geared towards slightly older students, the Vex IQ kit offers a more advanced robotics experience. Its controller and versatile building components enable students to design and program complex robots. The kit fosters problem-solving skills through hands-on activities and competitions, making it suitable for middle and high school levels.


  • Perfect Middle School Option: Vex IQ bridges the gap between simpler kits and more complex high-school-level robotics platforms. It’s ideal for middle school students ready to step up and take on a challenge.
  • Strong Learning Platform: Vex IQ offers a robust learning platform for STEM concepts. Students can develop their engineering, coding, physics, and problem-solving skills through building and programming robots.
  • Competition Ready: Vex IQ is the official platform for the VEX IQ Challenge, a middle school robotics competition that encourages teamwork, design thinking, and strategic problem-solving.
  • Wide Range of Parts: Vex IQ boasts a vast selection of parts compared to beginner kits. This allows for greater design flexibility and creativity in robot construction.
  • Multiple Coding Options: Vex IQ supports multiple coding platforms like VEXcode IQ (block-based and text-based) and Robot Mesh Studio’s IQ code. This caters to different learning styles and preferences.
  • Durability: Vex IQ parts are known for their durability, making them a good investment that can withstand multiple builds and modifications.


  • Cost: The initial investment in a Vex IQ kit can be higher than some beginner robotics kits.
  • Complexity Curve: Vex IQ has a steeper learning curve than beginner kits. Students will need to grasp more complex engineering principles and coding concepts.
  • Not Ideal for Very Young Children: The smaller parts and more intricate build process might be challenging for very young children. It’s a better fit for middle school or older students.
  • Limited Compared to High-School Kits: While more complex than beginner kits, Vex IQ offers less functionality than high-school-level Vex Robotics kits like VEX V5.

2. Ozobot: Interactive Coding for All Grades

Ozobot offers a range of coding robots suitable for kindergarten through twelfth grade. The Ozobot Bit and Evo kits provide a versatile coding platform that engages students across various grade levels. These robots can follow lines drawn with markers and be programmed using markers and digital interfaces. With a comprehensive curriculum covering mathematics, science, and literacy, Ozobot kits are adaptable to different classroom settings.

Ozobot is a tiny robot designed to make learning coding fun and engaging, especially for younger children. Unlike many coding toys that rely on screens, Ozobot uses a physical approach. These little robots can be programmed using colored markers and lines drawn on paper.

Here’s how it works: Ozobot has sensors on its underside that detect different colors. Drawing lines and color codes on paper allows you to create a path for the Ozobot to follow. Different colors can also be used to give the Ozobot instructions, such as speeding up, slowing down, or even making turns.

Ozobot comes in different models, with the most basic being very affordable. The starter kit typically includes the Ozobot robot itself, colored markers, and a selection of activity sheets with pre-designed paths and coding challenges. A more advanced model with Bluetooth connectivity also allows for more complex programming options through a tablet app.

a. Ozobot Bit

Ozobot Bit is a great entry point for young children (ages 5+) into coding. This tiny robot uses colored markers and lines drawn on paper to follow instructions. Here’s what makes Bit a good choice:


  • Simple and Affordable: Bit is the most affordable Ozobot model, making it accessible for many families.
  • Easy to Use: Coding with Bit is intuitive. Kids can draw basic lines and color codes on paper to control the robot’s movement.
  • Creative Play: Bit encourages creativity as children experiment with color combinations and path designs.
  • Learning Through Play: Playing with Bit introduces foundational coding concepts like sequencing and problem-solving in a fun way.


  • Limited Functionality: Bit offers a basic coding experience. It’s not suitable for complex programming challenges.
  • Small Size: The tiny size of Bit can make it easy to lose, especially for younger children.
  • Needs Calibration: Bit may require frequent calibration to detect color codes accurately.

b. Ozobot Evo

Ozobot Evo is a more advanced option for older children (ages 8+) ready for a bigger challenge. Evo builds upon the core functionality of Bit with additional features:


  • Bluetooth Connectivity: Evo connects to tablets via Bluetooth, allowing for more complex programming through the Ozobot app.
  • Advanced Coding Options: The app offers block-based coding and even text-based coding for experienced users.
  • Line Following and Sensor Tracking: Evo can follow drawn lines and pre-programmed colored paths. It also has additional sensors that allow for more interactive play.
  • Greater Learning Potential: Evo provides a deeper dive into coding concepts, preparing children for more advanced programming languages.


  • Higher Cost: Evo is more expensive than Bit due to its advanced features.
  • Steeper Learning Curve: The app-based coding in Evo requires more learning and might be challenging for younger children.
  • App Dependence: Evo heavily relies on the app for advanced functionalities, requiring access to a compatible device.

3. Sphero Bolt: Interactive Learning with Spherical Robots

The Sphero Bolt kit introduces students to spherical robots capable of traversing various terrains, including water. With its programmable interface, students can code the robot using a smartphone or computer, fostering creativity and problem-solving skills. The kit’s interactive nature makes it suitable for engaging students across different age groups.

Sphero Bolt is a programmable robotic ball that bridges the gap between fun and education. It’s a great tool for introducing kids (ages eight and up) to coding concepts through interactive play. Here’s a breakdown of Sphero Bolt’s pros and cons to help you decide if it’s the right fit:


  • Learning Through Play: Sphero Bolt makes learning to code engaging. Kids can control the robot’s movement, lights, and sounds through coding, making learning interactive and fun.
  • Multiple Coding Options: Sphero Bolt offers different coding options for various learning styles. You can start with block-based coding (beginner-friendly) and progress to text-based coding (JavaScript) for more advanced users.
  • Educational Value: Learning to code with Sphero Bolt teaches valuable skills like problem-solving, critical thinking, and computational thinking. These skills are beneficial not only for coding but also for various other subjects and aspects of life.
  • Durable and Water-Resistant: Sphero Bolt is built to withstand bumps and bruises, making it a good choice for active kids. It’s also water-resistant, allowing indoor and outdoor play (in shallow water).
  • Expandable Platform: Sphero Bolt can be integrated with other Sphero robots and accessories, allowing for more complex creations and coding challenges as your child’s skills develop.


  • Price: Sphero Bolt is a mid-range robotics toy with a higher price than some simpler coding toys.
  • Limited Functionality: While Sphero Bolt offers a good foundation for coding, it doesn’t have the same level of complexity as some high-end robotics kits. It might not be enough of a challenge for very experienced coders.
  • Battery Life: The battery life on Sphero Bolt is around 2 hours, which may require frequent charging for extended play sessions.
  • No Speaker: Sphero Bolt itself doesn’t have a speaker. All sounds and feedback come from the connected device (phone or tablet), which might limit the immersive experience for some users.

4. Robolink Code Drone: Immersive Drone Programming

For schools looking to incorporate drone programming into their curriculum, the Robolink Code Drone offers an immersive learning experience. Students can learn to code and control drones using a block-based programming interface, starting from basic commands and progressing to more advanced coding concepts. With its hands-on approach to learning, the Code Drone kit prepares students for real-world applications of drone technology.

The Robolink CoDrone is a unique drone designed to teach kids (ages eight and up) the basics of coding through flight control. Here’s a closer look at the CoDrone’s pros and cons to help you decide if it’s the right fit for your aspiring young pilot-coder:


  • Coding and Robotics Integration: The CoDrone combines the thrill of flying a drone with the valuable skill of learning to code. This can be highly engaging for kids interested in robotics and aviation.
  • Multiple Coding Options: Like Sphero Bolt, CoDrone offers multiple coding options. Kids can start with block-based coding (Blockly), which is beginner-friendly, and then progress to Python for more advanced programming challenges.
  • Durability: The CoDrone is built with durable materials to withstand minor crashes and bumps, making it a good choice for young learners still mastering flight control.
  • Lightweight and Compact: The CoDrone’s small size and lightweight design make it easy to store and transport. This allows indoor and outdoor flying in calm conditions (away from people and obstacles).
  • Multiple Versions: Robolink offers different versions of the CoDrone. The CoDrone Mini is a good starter option at a lower price. The CoDrone Pro has an optional buildable Arduino remote, allowing for even more customization and advanced control.


  • Limited Flight Time: Like most drones, the CoDrone has a limited flight time (around 5-7 minutes) on a single charge. Frequent charging might be necessary for extended play sessions.
  • Learning Curve: While the coding interfaces are designed to be user-friendly, there’s still a learning curve involved in flying the drone and understanding coding concepts.
  • Limited Range: The CoDrone’s flight range is limited due to its small size and power. Flying outdoors requires a controlled environment with minimal wind or obstacles.
  • Not for Beginners: The CoDrone might be challenging for young children with no experience with drones or coding. Adult supervision is highly recommended during flight.

Incorporating robotics kits into educational settings enhances students’ technical skills and fosters creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration. By selecting the right robotics kit based on students’ age, skill level, and learning objectives, educators can create enriching learning experiences that prepare students for future success in STEM fields.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Vex Robotics kits offer a versatile learning tool suitable for various grade levels, from early elementary to high school.
  2. Ozobot provides interactive coding platforms adaptable to different grade levels, with a comprehensive curriculum covering multiple subjects.
  3. Sphero Bolt offers an engaging spherical robot kit for interactive learning experiences, including water exploration.
  4. Robolink Code Drone introduces students to drone programming, fostering hands-on learning and real-world applications.
  5. Incorporating robotics kits into educational settings enhances students’ technical skills while fostering creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration.