Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:55 am

Best Sensors to Buy for a Classroom?

Mon Nov 19, 2018 3:24 pm

Hello all,

I just started teaching with Raspberry Pi's in the classroom and I have some money from student donations to purchase some sensors. Right now I have a lot of Sense HATs and PiCameras. I was looking to get some fun sensors for my students to experiment with - just maybe 2-5 of each for the advanced kids in my class.

We have done some:
Breadboarding with LEDs and buttons
Bluetooth with the Blue Dot
Sense HAT

What would you guys suggest would be some fun next steps? Motion sensors? Light sensors? Distance/rangefinders? Other sensors I am not even thinking of? Motor controllers? Touch screen?

What have you had the most fun with?

Thank you,

Posts: 2945
Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:49 am
Location: Lincs U.K.

Re: Best Sensors to Buy for a Classroom?

Mon Nov 19, 2018 8:43 pm

I would avoid touch screens as they do not add a lot over using a mouse in my eyes.

I would go for light, sound and movement and get them to create an alarm system and see if they can sneak past it :lol:
Need Pi spray - these things are breeding in my house...

User avatar
Posts: 3966
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2014 3:02 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Best Sensors to Buy for a Classroom?

Tue Nov 20, 2018 7:53 am

I tried to reply yesterday, but it seems they are still having heavy load server problems.


UltraSound ,
they are cheap and you can make music devices with them. ... c-theremin
and of course other boring things like distance and collision detectors ;-) ... like-a-bat

Temperature probes.
DS18B20, while you have temp sensor, it not perfect. These you can stick in the ground, liquids, the air and check against the SenseHAT to create a compensation setting to correct the SenseHAT (maths and reasoning, fun?). If your place is in to STEM ,cross curricular, then they can also be used in Science for experiments. Get the long waterproof probe versions.

And of course robotics kits for simple robots, like car buggies etc. This would then link into BlueDot as you can control it. ... ld-a-buggy
and then ... trol-buggy

Have a look at the GuiZero python module and the things they have designed it for.

UK? Senior, Primary
If UK senior go raid Science and/or Comouting for the micro:bit they have (science should have 5 from a The Crunch kit they where sent)
Use the Microbits on their own or to control thing on the Pi.

If you search for homebrew Alexa/Google Voice get a few bit and pieces to make you own assistant.

Also IR trip wire setups, should be good to build a trap or to use as timing gates for a robot car race.

Return to “Teaching and learning resources”