Why Teach Programming with Microcontrollers?
Many STEM and STEAM initiatives include units on programming. Why choose microcontrollers over computers alone?
- Microcontrollers can demonstrate the essentials — students learn about variables, constants, operators, counters, open and closed loops, conditional branching, and subroutines or function calls.
- Microcontrollers can interact with circuits through their input/output pins — students stay engaged when controlling lights, pushbuttons, beepers, sensors, and motors.
- Microcontrollers are everywhere — students gain an understanding of appliances, toys, and personal electronics. Learning to program them gives students an understanding of how their world works.
- Microcontroller-based equipment is used in many career fields — students gain technology literacy applicable to agriculture, construction, environmental studies, engineering, forensics, health sciences and medicine, manufacturing, media, medicine, music, scientific research, etc.
Parallax Microcontroller Languages
Click on an image below to learn more about each Parallax microcontroller programming language option.
Looking for Arduino or other options?
- For Arduino or RobotC see our Board of Education Shield for Arduino page
- For Python with the Scribbler 2 Robot, see the Institute for Personal Robotics (offsite)
Examples are Color-Coded
Throughout this site, text-based example programs are color-coded with a stripe to help show which language you are reading. Example code download buttons are color-coded to match.
' PBASIC code is marked with a green stripe
/* Propeller C/C++ code is marked with a blue stripe */
'' Spin code is marked with an orange stripe
//Arduino code is marked with a turquoise stripe