The UVify OOri is a fantastic drone for aspiring race pilots. It is stable and manageable in the living room, but can also run up...
- 5 - Minutes
- Basic FPV
- 50 - MPH
- 500 - ft
The Ryze Tello is one of the most capable and versatile mini drones around, enjoy different designs, code your own flight features, or just fly...
- 13 - Minutes
- 720p - 30FPS
- 18 - MPH
- 100 - Meters
Not your typical drone, the Air Hogs 360 Hoverblade is a self-propelled boomerang. Throw it, launch it, modulate the throttle and enjoy the fun.
- 2 - hours
- No camera
- 20 - ft
The Hubsan H111 is one of the best nano drones for flying around the house. It is a tiny machine that fits in the palm...
- 5 - Minutes
- No camera
- 7 - MPH
- 150 - ft
Aside from those top few drones, the education field is full of some amazing hardware that flies. With the right instructor, anything can be a lesson, but the UVify OOri and the Ryze Tello have proper education programs centered around them. These platforms teach you some drone hardware basics, then promote critical thinking as you code flight features for the drone. The basics of flight are covered, the machine will hover in place, but you tell it where to go in the sky, just watch out for that wall.
The FAA celebrated STEM and drones in education during their Drone Safety Awareness Week.
Best education drones:
Education should begin with safety and drone laws in mind. Like it or not, there are rules to the sky, and controlling a small drone is not hard, but easy to get wrong your first time up. Hopefully these resources can help:
- Do I need to register my drone with the FAA?
- First time pilot, things to know
- Beginners flight training
- Don’t make these mistake!
Best educational drones:
January 2018Release Date
UVify has a rich history in drone racing. They understand that the future racers need to start somewhere, developing the UVify OOri as a fantastic beginner's race drone. Slow and stable for practicing in your living room, this machine can open up to over 50MPH when you want to win a race. Agile, light-weight and fast, the UVify OOri is great for beginners on a budget.
There may be less expensive beginner drones out there, but if quality is of concern to you, the UVify OOri for $295 is hard to beat in the segment.
March 2018Release Date
Built using many DJI parts, and sold on the DJI site in partnership with DJI, it is a common misunderstanding that this is a DJI drone. The Ryze Tello is a fun little machine that serves many purposes. On the surface, it's a functional and capable high-end, toy-class drone. You can fly by mobile device, remote control or, in the case of the Educational versions of this machine, you can code your own functionality.
The Ryze Tello is an attractive first drone for many pilots and parents of potential pilots. There are even a few different partnerships, like the Iron Man edition Tello.
Air Hogs 360 Hoverblade
March 2016Release Date
Before we started globally referring to RC aircraft as drones, Air Hogs had a rich catalog of flying machines. They focus almost exclusively on light-weight, foam and plastic built toy machines. They do not conform to the quadcopter style of most modern drones, instead offering planes, helicopters and fun designs such as boomerangs. That is where the Air Hogs 360 Hoverblade comes in. This is a three-spoke boomerang that has a small motor to keep it on the move. Basically, this is a self-propelled boomerang, satisfying a dream I had as a child.
Check out the Air Hogs 360 Hoverblade for around $30 today.
One of our favorite drones for flying around the house is the tiny Hubsan H111. This is an entry level toy drone that usually sells for around $20. It flies quite well, all things considered, and is a superb machine to practice on during the winter months or before you dive into a larger machine. The built in battery only provides about 5 minute of flight time, there is no camera and no fancy flight features, it's a raw flight experience - which is what we love about it.
It's not lost on us that it comes in Drone Rush colors as well, thank you Hubsan!
Check out the Hubsan H111 for about $18 today.
Pixhawk4 S500 V2
The Pixhawk 2 S500 V2 is a drone kit that you build from scratch. It is more of a project to learn about the Dronecode initiative, that’s open source software with the PX4 flight control. Learning how to assemble a drone and then code its flight is a powerful education, and the Dronecode system can grow with you well beyond your first machine.
Check out the Pixhawk4 S500 V2.
NXP manufactures sensors and smarts for all sort of electronics. Their hardware is working hard behind the scenes of a lot of cars on the road, and their move to drones is proving a good fit. Once again, Dronecode and the PX4 flight control software are the choice here, but NXP has built a kit specifically to head for the HoverGames challenges.
Check out the NXP HGDRONEK66.
Special consideration: DJI Robomaster S1 robot
We won’t pretend for a minute that the DJI Robomaaster S1 can fly, but it is a superb STEM robot. Actually, if you count jumping from ramps to be flying, the S1 is fast enough to get some air… Anyhow, you get to build this machine from parts, there are good instructions, but learning how everything works, what the components are, and how they all work together is a good life skill. Once built, you have a peppy and agile robot that shoots BBs and laser beams! It can also detect incoming hits from each of those for your own war games, or use image sensors to create an elaborate Mario Kart race.
The DJI Robomast S1 runs $499 and up.
That will wrap up here today, remember to begin any drone education program with flight safety and going over the laws. Also, be sure to start with simulators or tiny drones until the students learn how to control the sticks.