http://www.arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/HomePageStart with 'blink', and move up from there. It walks you thru the wiring, and the coding. You'll want to have a breadboard and some wire, as well as a few other components.
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the internet is full of arduino resources that can help you to learn from beginning. check these linksarduino tutorials and resourcesarduino lessonsArduino Programming For Beginners: The Traffic Light Controller
well. What about "getting sterted with arduino" by Banzi, his creator?http://oreilly.com/pub/pr/2115some bits of it in this previous free edition(no, now I see isn't anymore)but steùart over herehttp://arduino.cc/en/Guide/HomePagegood work