Blending the physical and coding worlds together can lead to some of the most powerful STEM learning for kids. Mr. C in Wyoming, RI beautifully captured this in his proposal:
The Sphero Sprk+ and iPad will introduce my classroom full of curious and intelligent students to the benefits of coding/programing. The Sphero will allow my students to see physical responses to digital inputs. An experience like this is physically tangible compared to what many digital sites currently offer.
With the Sphero Sprk+ rolling across our floors, students in my classroom will engage in STEM lessons that will give them an early introduction to a growing field.
Mr. C goes on to describe his 42 elementary school students as ” a generation of video gamers, youtubers, and social media experts.” What better way to bring them the wonders of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics than through pairing the Sphero Robot with an iPad to control them with block coding! The students especially enjoy Friday afternoons doing programming challenges, a special aspect of getting homework done!
Mrs. C shared his thanks:
First and foremost, on behalf of myself and all of my students, thank you again for your donation to our class. The Sphero SPRK+ has not only brought great educational impact to our room, but a multitude of smiles, laughter, collaboration and true problem solving. Working with the Sphero has brought an experience to many of my students who would other wise never have an opportunity to have hands on experience with a robot.
Sure, many students have had time programing through hour of code, however, Sphero allows for actual, physical experience. All of my students have an the opportunity to create simple programs with the Sphero app, and it’s been a blast to see their reactions to what sphero actually does with the commands they gave it. Even more amazing, is how students would work together like engineers, identifying points in their programs which were causing sphero to perform an unintended action.
Not only has Sphero been an exciting component in problem solving, it has provided numerous opportunities to explore mathematical concepts. My students worked with sphero to create rectangles. While programing it, they had to apply their knowledge of rectangles to create blocks of code that would represent the different sides. Once they ran their program, then marked the corners and then used measuring tape to determine the perimeter of the rectangle.
Overall, the thrill that sphero has brought to our classroom is beyond valuable. Students love to “play” with it, all the while learning, exploring and problem solving. Many students, excited over their time using sphero have claimed that they are going to ask for one for Christmas. Others have already received one for a birthday present. Without your donations, these students would not have heard about sphero, nor explored the power of programing one. More importantly, my students who are unable to receive one as a gift due to finances, have the same opportunities as my more fortunate students.
Those opportunities, those experiences, the thrills along with the discoveries are all due to your generosity. Thank you again from bringing Sphero and all the experiences that come along with it, to our classroom.
It’s amazing to see these projects not only deliver tangible skills such as block coding, but also reinforcing mathematical concepts. This combined with in depth problem solving skills being developed are giving these students a great start towards a bright future in today’s technical world. These “video gamers, youtubers, and social media experts” will soon be engineering their own experiences as mathematicians, engineers and software developers!
As always we can’t wait to share the students letters themselves!
Perimeter, Doubling and Coding!
Just it moves!
Really funny dances!
Programming Challenges on the Run!
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