Protected: Robots for Coding [#140-0005]
School Name:Noelani Elementary
As the technology teacher at Noelani Elementary servicing students in Kindergarten through third grade, I work to move technology forward-steering away from games and towards multi-media projects where students work together and problem solve to create projects that align with standards they are focusing on in their classroom. One such project involves coding. Some say coding is the modern day superpower. Coding is a set of instructions computer programmers write that computers can understand. Coding is not only the future, it is the present. Coding is what makes our cars and credit cards work-really anything with electronics use coding to function properly. While everyone depends on coding for their lives to run, few actually know how it works. In the next decade, 1.4 million computer programming jobs will be created but only 40,000 graduates will be available leaving a million jobs unfilled. The late Steve Jobs stated: “Everybody in the country should learn how to program a computer... because it teaches you how to think.” Teaching coding to young children allow them to use both sides of their brain to solve problems. It also taps into the core 21st century skill set of: creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking. Students solve problems by collaborating and communicating with others to think critically and design creative solutions. I taught students how to code on their iPads using a kid friendly program called Scratch Junior. In the simplest possible explanation to the kindergarten students, I told them, “Coding is you get to be in charge of the iPad. You tell the iPad what to do.” I have never seen so many five year olds light up in response to a task. The empowerment placed in their lap provided determination, ownership and stamina. Students in first graders worked in pairs to come up with a word problem involving addition or subtraction. For example: A gym had ten basketballs. The coach took six basketballs, how many are left? Students would choose the gym background, code ten basketballs in the gym to bounce, code the coach to walk in and take the six balls with him. While students were able to code their programs to make basketballs bounce, children jump and rockets soar, all the success was still two-dimensional. I am looking to acquire three Dash robots that will allow students to write code on their iPads. These Dash robots actually perform the code the students wrote. It helps transform the abstract idea of code into something far more tangible. It’s basically robotics but in a simpler, kid friendly format for the younger students. I can create problems based on what they are learning in class. For instance, first graders can code the robot to move on a mat divided into blocks with different numbers in each block-which will serve as the answers. If they are working on addition, they can pull an addition card, find the answer to the problem on the mat and program their robot to get to the block with the right answer.
My Students need
3 Dash robots
3 Dash robots