We came to the conclusion a while ago that for the sake of keeping people, especially kids, enthusiastic, they should get their feet wet with code first. Once they are comfortable with that, then tackle the hardware. To provide the shortest possible route to the first moment of glory, we developed a new arduino shield built specifically for the process of teaching arduino code. By initially bypassing the electronics theory and postponing the breadboarding stage, it takes much of the frustration out of the learning process. Those things can come later, once they’ve already got a pocket full of victories.
The Diyode Code Shield has: Inputs: switch, button, potentiometer, rotary encoder, thermistor, photocell, and hall effect sensor. Outputs: Piezo buzzer, servo motor, RGB LED, Yellow LED, and a relay with screw terminals.