Introduction: "Libby" the Literary Micro:pet

About: NBCT Teacher, Maker, Grower, Gamer - School Librarian and Coordinator for "Make It...Awesome!" GMS Makerspace and Gardenspace, Seaperch Coach, Girls Who Code Mentor

Libby is your new reading buddy! She perches at the top of your page and cheers you on as you read a great book. Not only is she a smiling face that you can share a story with or can save your place in your favorite story, Libby is coded to do so much more. With her micro:bit inside, Libby is ready to smile and talk to you and keep track of your reading. With the press of a button, she'll start a reading timer with a smile. Press another button to find out how long you've been reading, then when are all done, she'll tell you your total time and be ready to say goodbye. Reading is so much more fun with a friend!


One micro:bit version 2 and battery pack

Access to a 3D printer to download and print the three files to build Libby's frame

(Use Tinkercad files to customize, or Thingiverse files to print)

Tinkercad files

Thingiverse project

2 M3 x 15mm bolts with nuts

Step 1: Designing the Body

Libby was designed to integrate a micro:bit into a bookmark. I started with measuring the micro:bit, 52x42x8mm and used Tinkercad to create the face that will act as the cover to the design. The face includes eyes for the two large buttons, two smaller holes for the two bolts to pass through, cut out mouth and eye brows, and finally two more cut outs for the plugs on the top. In the end, the 3D elements will include three pieces, a front shell with a customizable face, a middle bookmark that include the ears for our friend and a back battery holder with a slot for the wiring. I adapted the bookmark part of the design from another Thingiverse bookmark project by 3DP_Park that has been very successful for me in the past: All three components are held together by two bolts that pass through the three layers, which are stacked together.

Step 2: Libby's Shell Is Done!

After many rounds of testing, all three components are finished. The finished .STLs can be found at the Thingiverse project: or downloaded here. The customizable Tinkercad files are also linked in the supplies above. When printing these files, I have used 100% and 101% file sizes depending on the printer. The electronics should fit snugly but not be too tight.


Step 4: Try It Out!

With the project built and code downloaded, it is ready for a test! I hope you try this project out with your readers in mind and share any improvement ideas in the comments. Happy reading!

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