and we're constantly underestimating them.
As someone who learned soldering in his 20s I never imagined it was a task a 7 year old could take on, but that's just what happened today. M (junior product tester) wanted a handheld game system, so of course we got a PiGrrl Zero from our friends at Adafruit.com.
The soldering required for this kit is... extensive. Armed with deer skin gloves that were at least 3 sizes to big M was up to the challenge.
I expected an attempt. I expected boredom. I expected frustration. If I'm honest, I expected failure. I did not expect patience, determination, incredible satisfaction and no small amount of skill. M rose to this challenge, making one perfect solder after another. Even after his hands got tired and he asked me to take over he was still completely engrossed in the process. He read off pin numbers for me and checked over my work, making suggestions and more than once commenting how he wasn't even a little bored.
His results were exceptional, and not for the first time nor the last, I realized I'd underestimated him. Over the years we've seen hundred of kids asking sophisticated questions and executing complicated projects and ideas. And yet, I'm still amazed at what these tiny people are cable of.
Soldering iron: Hakko FX888D
Solder: Lead Free
Great soldering tutorial from our friends at SparkFun.