What's a Microcontroller Educators Course

BASIC Stamp Educators Course 1: What's a Microcontroller

This course focuses on the electronic components and design principles that go into most common digital devices.  Course activities are drawn from "What's a Microcontroller?" and the BASIC Stamp Activity Kit.  The text was written for high school students; discussion will include stragegies for adapting the material to different subjects and age levels. 



  • Introduction to the BASIC Stamp microcontroller
  • Introduction to PBASIC programming with the BASIC Stamp Editor
  • Building a simple light circuit and sending signals to blink lights
  • Building and monitoring a pushbutton circuit to control a light
  • Controlling a servo motor
  • Monitoring circuits to read a dial and a light sensor
  • Playing tones on a piezospeaker


STEM Topics

  • Programming & computing: writing programs, displaying messages, remembering values, computation with math operators
  • Electricity & Electronics: building circuits, voltage, resistance, current, signal generation and monitoring
  • Physics: light spectrum, frequency and sound


Prerequisites & Equipment

  • Basic computer skills required include installing software, connecting peripherals to a USB port, navigating between windows, and using a mouse. No programming or electronics experience is absolutely required, but some is definitely helpful.
  • Bring your own Windows laptop computer, or a Mac running VMFusion; download and install the BASIC Stamp Editor software. Boe-Bot Robot hardware to use during the course will be supplied.

Scheduling & Registration

â–ş Open the Parallax Calendar of Classes & Events (offsite)