Guides for product: Circuit Playground Express

Circuit Playground Express is the next step towards a perfect introduction to electronics and programming. We've taken the original Circuit Playground Classic and made it even better! Not only did we pack even more sensors in, we also made it even easier to program.

Start your journey with Microsoft MakeCode block-based or Javascript programming. Then, you can use the same board to try CircuitPython, with the Python interpreter running right on the Express. As you progress, you can advance to using Arduino IDE, which has full support of all the hardware down to the low level, so you can make powerful projects.You can even use code.org CS Discoveries to learn all about coding right in your browser!

Check out our detailed guide with a tour of Circuit Playground Express and details on getting started using MakeCode, CircuitPython, code.org CS Discoveries or Arduino!

Because you can program the same board in 4 different ways - the Express has great value and re-usability. From beginners to experts, Circuit Playground Express has something for everyone. If you are looking for our original, Arduino-only Circuit Playground, check out the Circuit Playground Classic.

    The board is round and has alligator-clip pads around it so you don't have to solder or sew to make it work. You can power it from USB, a AAA battery pack, or with a Lipoly battery (for advanced users). Circuit Playground Express has built-in USB support. Built in USB means you plug it in to program it and it just shows up, no special cable or adapter required. Just program your code into the board then take it on the go!

    Here's some of the great goodies baked in to each Circuit Playground Express:

    • 10 x mini NeoPixels, each one can display any color
    • 1 x Motion sensor (LIS3DH triple-axis accelerometer with tap detection, free-fall detection)
    • 1 x Temperature sensor (thermistor)
    • 1 x Light sensor (phototransistor). Can also act as a color sensor and pulse sensor.
    • 1 x Sound sensor (MEMS microphone)
    • 1 x Mini speaker with class D amplifier (7.5mm magnetic speaker/buzzer)
    • 2 x Push buttons, labeled A and B
    • 1 x Slide switch
    • Infrared receiver and transmitter - can receive and transmit any remote control codes, as well as send messages between Circuit Playground Expresses. Can also act as a proximity sensor.
    • 8 x alligator-clip friendly input/output pins
    • Includes I2C, UART, 8 pins that can do analog inputs, multiple PWM output
    • 7 pads can act as capacitive touch inputs and the 1 remaining is a true analog output
    • Green "ON" LED so you know its powered
    • Red "#13" LED for basic blinking
    • Reset button
    • ATSAMD21 ARM Cortex M0 Processor, running at 3.3V and 48MHz
    • 2 MB of SPI Flash storage, used primarily with CircuitPython to store code and libraries.
    • MicroUSB port for programming and debugging
    • USB port can act like serial port, keyboard, mouse, joystick or MIDI!

    Check out our detailed guide with a tour of Circuit Playground Express and details on getting started using MakeCode, CircuitPython, code.org CS Discoveries or Arduino!

    Make a spinning optical illusion toy with some paper and a motor
    Paper Craft Zoetrope with Crickit
    7
    Beginner
    Starting out in robotics, get up and running in a single setting with Adafruit Crickit and Circuit Playground Express
    Hello World of Robotics with Crickit
    11
    Beginner
    Make a nightlight with just a Gemma M0 and CircuitPython! Or use a Circuit Playground Express for a super-featured version.
    CircuitPython-Powered 3-minute Nightlight
    3
    Beginner
    A CRICKIT based robot snake that can make it's way around a space.
    CRICKIT Snake Bot
    9
    Intermediate
    Use MakeCode and the accelerometer to operate a pair of glider wings.
    Circuit Playground Express Sugar Glider
    12
    Intermediate
    Use blinking light to animate spinning faces, all synced up by Crickit!
    Stroboscopic Zoetrope
    18
    Beginner
    3D print a mount for your robotics projects
    Mount for CRICKIT
    5
    Beginner
    Use NeoPixels on your Crickit Projects in MakeCode and CircuitPython
    Make It Glow With Crickit
    7
    Beginner
    Get this baby sea turtle safely to the ocean!
    Crawling Baby Sea Turtle Robot
    15
    Beginner
    Use morse code to control your Android phone with this project, no soldering required!
    Android GBoard Morse Code Control with Circuit Playground Express
    4
    Beginner
    Get started quickly with the sensors on the Circuit Playground Express
    Make It Sense
    9
    Beginner
    Visualize your data in real time on your computer screen
    Make It Plot
    3
    Beginner
    Send and receive messages using IR with your Circuit Playground Express!
    Infrared Receive and Transmit with Circuit Playground Express
    8
    Beginner
    Make a two wheeled robot
    LEGO Crickit Rover
    17
    Beginner
    Add sound quickly to your Circuit Playground Express and Crickit Projects
    Make It Sound
    6
    Beginner
    Where are those hidden Circuit Playground Express treasures?
    Circuit Playground Express Treasure Hunt
    9
    Beginner
    Scream at The Scream and The Scream screams back!
    The Scream: Interactive Screaming Painting
    19
    Beginner
    Play infrared zombie tag with Circuit Playground Express and CircuitPython or MakeCode!
    Zombie Tag Game with Circuit Playground Express
    5
    Beginner
    Use a Circuit Playground Express to emulate a keyboard
    Make It a Keyboard
    7
    Beginner
    Turn your Circuit Playground Express into a computer mouse
    Make It a Mouse
    4
    Beginner
    Create beautiful complex harmonic curves with this drawing robot!
    Crickit Harmonic Drawing Machine
    6
    Beginner
    Log your Circuit Playground Express data directly into a spreadsheet
    Make It Log
    7
    Beginner
    Control a Circuit Playground Express based robot with your hand motions and another Circuit Playground Express.
    Infrared Hand Gesture Robot Control Glove
    23
    Beginner
    Make a soap bubble blowing robot for bubbly fun
    Make It Bubble
    15
    Beginner