I was recently very interested to hear about a DIY learning based construction kit camera aimed at children. The camera is called BigShot : The Camera for Education. The camera costs $89 and is delivered with all the construction parts ready for assembly. Using the BigShot website you follow step by step instructions for putting the camera together. The site also contains a Learning section that teaches children about power generators, lenses, image sensors, viewfinders, basic image processing etc.
The whole experience is designed to be quite immersive, teaching children about basic electronics and photography skills, and at the end of the experience you end up with a fully functioning, yet basic, 3 mega pixel digital camera.
The camera has some quite novel features like if you are running low on battery power you can turn a crank handle to charge up the battery. This is a really good idea, I wish I could charge my Lumix battery up with a handle!!
The specs for the camera are as follows:
- Sensor : 3Mega Pixel (2408 x 1536)
- Storage : Internal Flash at around 120 JPEG photos
- Camera Modes : Auto, Flash, No-Flash, Timer
- Lens Settings : Regular, Panoramic, and 3D
- Fiew of View : Regular = 40 deg, Panoramic = 80 deg, and Stereo = 16 deg
- Flash : 1W LED
- Display : 1.4” LCD
- Battery : Lithium Polymer (Rechargeable)
- Backup Power : Hand Cranked Dynamo
- Interface : USB 2.0
- Dimensions : 129mm x 72mm x 40mm
All in all I think this is a great learning tool for kids that ends up with a fully functioning and usable digital camera. When my Son and Daughter a both a little older, I think this would be a great project to do with them.