Introduction to soldering: Kitty Ears is the perfect introduction to solder skills for children
Everyone should be able to enjoy coding and making, wherever on the gender (or indeed any) spectrum they may be. The Raspberry Pi Foundation, and we on The MagPi, are working on bringing down cultural barriers so young women can start their digital making journey. Products like this kit – featuring cute yarn and awesome LEDs – are one way to help effect this change (£22, available from Etsy).
Many products aimed at young girls can feel patronising and dumbed-down, but despite appearances, this is a legitimate introduction to soldering: you will absolutely need a soldering iron to build this, and there are no short cuts. Once it’s all connected, you get the gratification of the circuit working – an instant, and positive result!
The rest of the build is simple, and involves wrapping yarn around a plastic headband. The process teaches you about common knitting knots, and allows customisation by adding extra trinkets and accessories to truly make the ears your own.
The box comes with extremely thorough instructions, and there are detailed video walkthroughs on Konichiwakitty’s website which show you every step of the process. The components that make up the headband can be used on different builds as well – by adding more LEDs you can make it brighter, or attach it to different headbands with different ears.
It is a fantastic kit, overall. While not all girls like pink cute things, some do (and shouldn’t be shamed for it), and it’s a fun afternoon for anyone who decides they’d like to build one. And Halloween is right around the corner…
A great kit that can truly help some people feel like they can become a maker. With plenty of detailed instructions and videos available, it should be a fun afternoon build.