FAQ


What is STEAM?

STEAM is an educational approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics as access points for guiding student inquiry, dialogue, and critical thinking. The end results are students who take thoughtful risks, engage in experiential learning, persist in problem-solving, embrace collaboration, and work through the creative process.


What is the difference between STEM and STEAM ?

STEAM is a way to take the benefits of STEM and complete the package by integrating these principles in and through the arts. STEAM allows students to connect their learning in these critical areas together with arts practices, elements, design principles, and standards to provide the whole pallet of learning at their disposal.


Why is STEM/STEAM important?

The US Department of Education reports that the number of STEM/STEAM jobs in the United States will grow by 14% from 2010 to 2020, growth that is much faster than the national average of 5-8 % across all job sectors.


Why should I choose the BrainPad for my STEM/STEAM program?

BrainPad is the only truly evolving platform. It starts with the software basics and goes all the way into professional programming and tools. Students and teachers have the choice to evolve at their own pace. The BrainPad is more than programming though, you will also evolve in electronics. The BrainPad comes with many sensors built in for immediate use but it also includes expansion headers for additional sensors and electronic circuits.


I am a teacher; how do I get started?

With the BrainPad simulator, you just need a computer with internet access. You do not even need an actual BrainPad to get started! Go ahead and give it a try now at makecode.brainpad.com.


Is the BrainPad limited to the on-board peripherals?

The BrainPad includes expansion headers. These can be wired to other sensors and circuits. This is an excellent path for those with electronic experience or those who want to educate students on electronics, like wiring an external LED for example. The docs have more info.


Can I build a robot using BrainPad?

Yes, and quite easily! The BrainPad comes with two servo motor headers. Those can be used to add two full rotation servos. Have you seen our Sun Seeking Robot?


How does BrainPad work with Microsoft Visual Studio and C#?

The secret is TinyCLR OS. Please visit this page to learn more.


I use an Arduino or micro:bit in my classroom, why switch to the BrainPad?

In short, the BrainPad is easy to start with like micro:bit and it is easily expandable like Arduino. Additionally, the BrainPad is the only tool to evolve with students from basic programming techniques through a professional programming environment. The layout of the BrainPad also makes it easy to visualize the circuit's internals like the inputs, the "brain", and the outputs.


We are on a budget but we want to help our students. How can you help?

We want to help your students as well. There are many ways we can help. Please contact us today.


Can I power up and use the BrainPad without using a PC?

Yes. Any USB power bank, like the ones usually used to charge phones, can be used to power up the BrainPad. Using a phone charger is an option as well. Once the BrainPad is loaded with an application, it will always retain this application and run it when powered up.