LOVE LOVE LOVE! My students K-6 love messing around with the mouse and "coding" it.
Pros: I love that it comes with a game board and color coded arrow cards that match the arrows on the mouse.
Cons: The arches are a little pointless becuase they don't fit correctly and get in the way. The board is a little finnicky to set up as well.
Verdict: At around $50, it's a definite purchase for me.
This does almost the same thing as Robot Mouse
Pros: If you get the mat, it is very versatile. You can create endless games and coding opportunities. It's big and sturdy.
Cons: It's pricey. Also, the arrows on top of the BeeBot are not color coded, which can get confusing. Also, all add-ons need to be purchased (arrows, game mats, etc.)
Verdict: If you are looking for REAL classroom integration, this would be a good option. Other than that, it is a little too expensive for what it does. Expecially when you have options like the Robot Mouse for half the price.
A tethered robot (no bluetooth) that teaches coding to students K-12. MY FAVORITE!!!
Pros: It works with almost any computer or laptop. Including Chromebooks! It is reasonably priced for its capabilities. There are "apps" that go with the Finch that are leveled to a students capabilities.
Cons: The Finch has to be plugged in, and that is sometimes a mild pain because the tires can get stuck.
Verdict: I'd buy five of these if I had the budget. It's my favorite coding tool currently and I recommend it to anyone who asks.
A "build your own computer" kit
Pros: Cool factor is high. The programming activities are well thought out and engaging.
Cons: It is not made to be built and rebuilt, do it doesn't work well in a "maker" setting. Mine broke after three builds. They also only work when hooked up to a screen through HDMI, which a lot of our computer screens don't have because they are older.
Verdict: Hard pass