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Showing posts with label STEM. Show all posts
Showing posts with label STEM. Show all posts
STEM and My World - Physical and Digital STEM Activities for Social Studies

STEM and My World - Physical and Digital STEM Activities for Social Studies


As we prepare our youngest students for the future, we believe in the promotion of digital literacy as well as the importance of "unplugging" for hands-on collaboration. Created by Brooke Brown and Brittany Washburn, STEM and My World brings early childhood social studies to life with interactive digital activities and an engaging collaborative STEM challenge.
As we prepare our youngest students for the future, we believe in the promotion of digital literacy as well as the importance of "unplugging" for hands-on collaboration. Created by Brooke Brown and Brittany Washburn, STEM and My World brings early childhood social studies to life with interactive digital activities and an engaging collaborative STEM challenge.

STEM and My World activities are designed for the primary grades classroom but are also great to do at home. Since there are so many great activities included, it can be something done over multiple sessions at school and at home. These STEM Challenges and Digital slides make a great addition to the social studies units on the same topics. 

DIGITAL SLIDES
The digital slides that go with each unit are in Google Slides but can also be used in PowerPoint. Students interact with the slides by completing drag and drop and simple typing activities. We've included links to videos to enhance the understanding of each topic. 
STEM and My World

STEM Challenges
These hands on STEM Challenges are a great opportunity for collaboration and problem solving. You can complete them with materials on hand, and the teacher charts and vocab cards are provided to help you facilitate learning. 
STEM and My World

MAKERTECH MATS
We all want our students to master technology tools and use them to create original works. Each of the tech tools in the MakerTech guide are designed to allow students to explore digital tools while creating something using the steps of the engineering design process. The best part is that nearly every topic and subject area can be explored using these tools, so they can be used as a part of your daily academic activities, not as an extra thing to fit into your schedule.
STEM and My World

Right now we have 3 units available to try with your students. 

STEM and My World - Landforms and Mapping

Landforms Includes the following:
*32 slides of interactive digital Google Slides activities for landforms and mapping, compatible with ANY device
STEM and My WorldSTEM and My World
STEM and My World
*FOUR STEM Challenges with lesson plans, teacher charts, vocabulary cards, and student templates:
1) Me on the Map
2) Road Trip
3) Crafty Compass
4) Landform Construction
STEM and My World

STEM and My World

*Makertech Mat choice board for Makerspace extensions
*App poster
STEM and My World

STEM and My World - My Family

My Family Includes the following: 
*13 interactive digital Google Slides activities for family structures, compatible with any device
STEM and My World

STEM and My World

*"Building Generations" (Family Tree) STEM Challenge with lesson plan, teacher chart, vocabulary cards, and student template
STEM and My World

*Makertech Mat choice board for Makerspace extensions
*App poster
STEM and My World
Click here for the My Family Unit


STEM and My World - Fire Safety

Fire Safety Includes the following:
*16 interactive digital Google Slides activities for fire safety, compatible with any device
STEM and My World

STEM and My World

STEM and My World

*"Escape to Safety" STEM Challenge with lesson plan, teacher chart, vocabulary cards, and student template
STEM and My World
STEM and My World

*Makertech Mat choice board for Makerspace extensions
*App poster
STEM and My World
Click here for the Fire Safety Unit

When students are finished
• Create a class eBook in Google Slides where students each get one slide to insert their final product.
• Create a Padlet and have students upload their final product.
• Have a “gallery walk” where students have their final product up on their screen while they walk around to see classmates’ creations.
• Have students present their final product to the class.
As we prepare our youngest students for the future, we believe in the promotion of digital literacy as well as the importance of "unplugging" for hands-on collaboration. Created by Brooke Brown and Brittany Washburn, STEM and My World brings early childhood social studies to life with interactive digital activities and an engaging collaborative STEM challenge.

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Brittany Washburn
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Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom

Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom


Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov

One of the coolest parts of the job as a tech teacher is getting to test out robots. In this blog post I'm going to tell you all about KOOV from Sony. They are paying me to write this blog post, but all of the opinions are my own. I really think it will make a great addition to any STEM or Computer Lab classroom. 


Features of KOOV

First I want to tell you about the KOOV Trial Kit. They also have an Educator Kit that includes more parts, but the Trial Kit can definitely get you started and see if it is a good fit for your classroom. 

One of the things that sets KOOV apart from other coding kits is that students can actually build with it! The kit comes with KOOV blocks in 7 different shapes and 7 different colors, which is ideal for learning about 3D building. 
Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov
To help students learn the fundamentals of coding, there are these sensors that can be programmed. The kit comes with 5 sensors that include LEDs, a buzzer, IR Photoreflector, motors, and the KOOV Core. This combo is perfect for building models that can interact with their surroundings. 
Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov
In addition to all of the physical pieces, there is a great app with a user-friendly interface that makes it perfect for elementary students. Students use the drag and drop coding blocks to program the sensors, so it should be a familiar experience to other coding programs we use. It is the same app that is available in the full Educator's Kit. 


Using KOOV in the Elementary Classroom

The app has everything you need to code your KOOV. I love that they made options for Chromebooks, Windows devices, and IOS. This makes is so versatile for all of our unique setups. 
Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov


Interested in 9 Digital STEM Challenges to go along with KOOV? There is a file in the TRY section of my Free Resource Library that you can use with students. Just sign up for a free account and then navigate to the "Activities to TRY" area and look for the picture of KOOV to find the activity. 
Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov
You know I'm always talking about ways to bring collaboration into the tech lab. When we think of coding, sometimes the image that pops into our mind is someone with noise canceling headphones working for hours over his/her laptop. That doesn't appear very collaborative. 

That is why I love this next generation of classroom coding kits. They practically require collaboration and problem solving skills. Students can work through the challenges together until they get it right. 


Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov
The digital STEM challenges I provided really only go over the very basic commands that are possible with KOOV. There is so much more to do using the 3D building blocks that the possibilities are nearly limitless. 

Q&A

I'm pulling the Q&A directly from the KOOV website
Can children use KOOV on their own?
Yes. The KOOV app was developed so that children can learn while playing on their own, as it explains the way to build blocks and coding in a concise and intuitive manner.

Can I enjoy KOOV even though I don't know how to code?
Yes. KOOV uses visual programming so that even beginners can quickly understand how to code. In the Learning Course, students learn how to build robots and how to code step-by-step, so that without previous experience they can learn while having fun. In Robot Recipes, we have pre-coded and pre-designed a wide range of run robots so that even beginners can instantly start enjoying KOOV.

In which countries is KOOV available?
The Educator Kit and Trial Kit are available to ship only to residents of the USA although KOOV is sold in both Japan and China. These products may not be shipped to purchasers located in the state of Washington.

Do I need anything to use KOOV?
You will need three 1.5V AA/LR6 alkaline batteries, a Phillips screwdriver and a compatible operating environment to run the KOOV app.

How can I contact the KOOV team if I have any questions?
For technical questions, contact us at KOOVSupport@sony.com.  To speak with someone directly, call 1-866-935-7665 M-F from 7am-5pm.  For all other questions contact us at KOOV@sony.comWe are happy to answer any questions you may have.

What is STEAM and how does KOOV teach kids about STEAM?
STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math. Through KOOVs Learning Course, we provide children with over 50 hours of engaging STEAM content, working as an introduction for many kids to these exciting fields.

What operating systems is KOOV compatible with?
Windows: 7/8.1/10 64bit
Mac OS: 10.8 and above
iOS: iOS 10 and above, iPads made in 2013 or later
Chrome OS

How does KOOV connect with my computer?
Via Bluetooth and direct USB on Mac, IPad, Windows and Chromebooks devices..

How long do KOOV robots last on batteries?
This really depends on the number of sensor and actuators that you use. The Alligator can work for several days without new batteries, while a robot with two DC motors running continuously can last for around 45 minutes.

Can KOOV be used offline?
Offline options are available.

Is the software free?
There are no additional charges for the KOOV App, Classroom Management software or for student logins/licenses.

Special Deal

For a limited time only, you can get the Trial Kit or the full Educator Kit at a huge discount. Hurry though, the offer is only good through 12/29/19.


KOOV SALE - From NOW until 12/29/19 -> HERE

Save $50 on the KOOV Trial Kit $249.99 à NOW $199.99 

Save $100 on the KOOV Educator Kit $519.99 à NOW $419.99 

New information about the First Annual Sony KOOV Challenge

In March 2020 Sony will host the First Annual Sony KOOV Challenge in the USA. To sign up to participate in the challenge, please go please go HERE


Using the KOOV Kit in the Elementary Classroom #SonyKoov

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Brittany Washburn
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Small Motor STEM

Small Motor STEM


Small Motor STEM

What is Small Motor STEM?

We have all of these amazing small motor materials and let students explore them, which totally serves its purpose. I want to take it to the next level, though, and give students STEM challenges to complete with the small motor materials. Voila, Small Motor STEM is born!

Pixel Art is really trendy in edtech right now, so I was racking my brain to come up with a way to take it offline and do it in a way that is independent for students. 
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

Combining Pixel Art with design constraints and small motor materials means that these activities meet so many standards. This list is really just the beginning. If you combine any extra writing activities (planning and/or reflection) you can bring in even more!

STANDARDS
ISTE: 1.b, 1.c, 2.d, 4.b, 4.d
CSTA: CPP.L1:3-04, CPP.L1:6-05, CT.L1:3-03, CT.L1:6-01, CT.L1:6-02, CT.L2-07
NGSS: K-2-PS3-2, 3-5-ETS1-2
CC Math Standards: 2.G.2
CC ELA: SL.1.1, SL.1.2, L.1.6 SL.2.1, SL.2.2, L.2.6 SL.3.1. SL.3.3, L.3.6 
Computational Thinking Practices:
Creativity
Collaboration
Communication
Persistence
Problem Solving

Getting Organized with Small Motor STEM

The cards are color coded for the level.
Level 1- Black outline
Level 2- Blue outline
Level 3- Orange outline
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
Level 1- Provide students with one of the Small Motor STEM Mats and the full pixel designs. Students will recreate the design using any material they have available.
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

  • Level 2- Give students design constraints by limiting their materials and providing them the pixel designs that require them to finish the image by mirroring the other half.
    Level 3- Require students to go without the grid and recreate the designs with limited materials.
    Collaborative Option- Students work in pairs where one holds the design card and dictates to the other student which color(s) to put in which spaces on the grid. Communication is key!
  • Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
    Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

1.Print, cut, laminate the cards in the levels of difficulty you want for your students.
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

2.Put the cards on a ring or in a task box.
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn


Materials to use for Small Motor STEM

The materials that can be used for these tasks are nearly limitless. They just need to be relatively small and have the right color selections.

Materials Ideas:
  • Pom-poms
  • Blocks of any kind
  • Perler beads
  • Craft beads and pipe cleaners or ribbon
  • Buttons
  • Hole punch dots
  • Foam balls
  • Snap cubes
  • Counting bears
  • Centimeter cubes
  • Counting chips
  • Lite-Brite
  • Markers/Crayons/Colored Pencils

Anything else you have on hand that has enough pieces in the right colors
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

1.Have a place in your classroom where you store these materials for quick access.
2.Challenge students to come up with resources to complete the designs.



Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
You can even do a life-size grid! I made this out of plastic cups and counting bears. 

Bringing in the Academics to Small Motor STEM

Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
The vocabulary cards and recording sheet give you what you need for a mini-lesson about Pixel Art and following a "program" to complete the designs, as well as a reflection activity that asks students to write about their process. 

I recommend printing and laminating all of the vocabulary cards to have on the wall or displayed near your STEM or Makerspace area for students to use as a reference during their activity time. 

Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
Here are some other photo examples to show the materials students can use. The possibilities are nearly endless!

Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn

Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
 Don't have quite the right colors? No problem, just replace them with what you do have.
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn
 The grid isn't a perfect 10x10? Challenge students to figure out how to still make the design proportional (something like if they choose to skip a space vertically they may or may not also need to skip a space horizontally).
Small Motor STEM Activities by Brittany Washburn


It would mean the world to me if you'd send me some photos (or post them on social media and tag me so I can see them) of your students completing these challenges. I can't wait to hear what they think!

Small Motor STEM

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Brittany Washburn
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Using Sphero BOLT In the Elementary Classroom

Using Sphero BOLT In the Elementary Classroom


Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.

One of the coolest parts of the job as a tech teacher is getting to play with robots so naturally I was thrilled when Sphero offered to send me their newest robotic ball, BOLT to try out.

After I made sure BOLT was charged, setting it up to use took less than 5 minutes. I downloaded the app, connected the bot, and tapped around to find the controls.

I had never played with any Sphero bot before, so this was very fun for me. I was immediately impressed with how well BOLT moves. Not only is this bot fast, but the controls from the app are also more accurate than other bots I've used. I wanted to make sure that I had a solid understanding of what could be done with BOLT, so I headed to the Sphero website to find out.

From the Sphero website:
  •  available for download on iOS. Works with the Sphero Arcade and Sphero Template playgrounds

Tech Specs

  • Bluetooth Compatibility: Bluetooth Smart
  • Batteries: Rechargeable lithium-ion
  • Battery life: 2+ hours
  • Charge Time: 6 hours
  • Height: 73mm diameter sphere
  • Weight: 200g

Video


Features 

  • Learn to code by drawing, using Scratch blocks, or writing JavaScript text with the Sphero Edu app. 
  • The colorful LED matrix is fully programmable and easy on the eyes.

  • BOLT to BOLT infrared communication allows for new games and advanced movements.
  • Auto aim your robot thanks to the built-in compass.
  • An ambient light sensor allows you to program based on your room’s brightness.
  • A long battery life of 2+ hours per charge can handle even your biggest projects.
  • It’s fun to take for a spin. Simply drive BOLT and play games.
  • BOLT is approachable yet advanced with more features, more power, and more fun.
  • What's In The Box

    • Sphero BOLT
    • Inductive Charging Base with USB cable
    • Protractor with heading, directions, and clock
    • Sticker sheet
    • Quick Start Guide to get you rolling
    • Sphero Edu app available for download on iOS, Android, Kindle, Mac, Windows, and Chrome
    • Sphero Play app available for download on iOS, and Android
    • S
    • wift Playgrounds app available for download on iOS. Works with the Sphero Arcade and S
    • phero Template playgrounds

    Tech Specs

    • Bluetooth Compatibility: Bluetooth Smart
    • Batteries: Rechargeable lithium-ion
    • Battery life: 2+ hours
    • Charge Time: 6 hours
    • Height: 73mm diameter sphere
    • Weight: 200g

    Video


Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.

Using Sphero BOLT in the Elementary Classroom

Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.

The Sphero Edu app has everything you need to program your BOLT. I set mine up on my iPhone first to try it but I definitely recommend an iPad for using with students. 
Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.
This is what the "remote control" screen looks like, and it is even cuter on an iPad. It lets you choose the color of the display (which naturally I made coral) and then lets you drive BOLT around like a remote control car. Students will love exploring how BOLT moves using this screen. I recommend starting here with a guided activity so that students can learn what BOLT is capable of before using the bot to do learning activities. 


Interested in 9 Digital STEM Challenges to go along with Sphero BOLT? There is a file in the TRY section of my Free Resource Library that you can use with students. Just sign up for a free account and then navigate to the "Activities to TRY" area and look for the picture of BOLT to find the activity. 
Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.


Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.
Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom. 

Q: How do I aim BOLT?
A: Unique to BOLT, this robot can be auto-aimed. Simply tap the aiming button within the app to get started. *It is really cute too. When I tested this out with my 4 year old nephew we joked that BOLT's butt needs to be facing us and we made it do a little dance with the aiming feature.*

Q: How do I charge BOLT?
A: Plug the charging cradle into a USB power adapter and directly into a wall outlet.

Q: Is BOLT waterproof?
A: Yes.

Q: Where do I download the app?
A: Search for "Sphero EDU” in iTunes or Google Play stores to download for free.

Q: What is the battery life?
A: BOLT has the long battery life of 2+ hours on full charge. *Keep this in mind if you plan to use it all day with students. You'll need to recharge a few times.*

Q: What is the range on BOLT?
A: BOLT has a 100 foot range.

Q: Are there accessories available for BOLT?
A: Each BOLT robot comes with a protractor, sticker sheet and a quick start guide to get you rolling

Q: Will the app come in my language?
A: BOLT is available in the following languages: English, Arabic, Chinese (Simplified to Traditional), French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Spanish and Swedish.

BOLT uses Scratch Coding Blocks

The block coding feels just like what we are already used to with Scratch, just laid out a bit differently. Everything is there that you would expect, from the motion to the sensing to the sounds blocks sections. It ends up being very meaningful for students to code something on the app and then physically see the result with BOLT. 
Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.

If your students are ready, you can even have them explore and contribute to the growing community files on the Sphero website. This makes it a collaborative experience because it gives students the ability to see and test other codes. 

Are you starting to think about how you want to use BOLT in the classroom? 

Take a moment to read through these Q&A directly from the Sphero team.

Sphero Q&A

Q: How does BOLT differ from SPRK+?
A: BOLT is our most advanced robot to date. BOLT has seven sensors (motor, encoders, gyroscope, accelerometer, 8x8 matrix, infrared, magnetometer and light sensor), four of them being unique to BOLT (8x8 matrix, infrared, magnetometer and light sensor).


Q: Are these products geared solely for the classroom?

A: Our robots are designed to mirror life, both within and beyond the classroom. There are limitless opportunities to recreate, reinvent, and redefine. Our goal is to keep kids learning through the excitement of play.

Q: What does the acquisition of Specdrums mean for Sphero?
A: We’re thrilled to be bringing in the Specdrums team to tap into the “A” of STEAM learning. We’ll have more on this in November!

Q: Will there be any future Disney products?
A: Through our relationship with Disney we were able to learn from the best in the business in terms of making personalities come to life. Our goal with future products will be to draw on that, as well as continue to build on our successes, expand creative play and STEAM efforts, and keep products scalable for all ages.

Q: Why education?
A: In today’s tech-focused, hyper-changing world, STEAM education is more important than ever. But there is a crucial element missing in most curriculum - the fun. That’s where Sphero comes in. But it’s broader than that. We engage kids in meaningful journeys. We afford them the chance to create, to consider, to challenge. In short, we use coding to help kids decode lifelong skills and lessons. All so they can become the highly intelligent, emotionally-fluent creators of tomorrow.

Q: What’s next for Sphero?
A: In the coming months we’re going to be unveiling some new products that will embrace the knowledge that play is a powerful teacher while going even deeper into STEAM principles - but continuing to be seriously fun. We’ll continue to be exciting kids, and kids at heart, to play to learn and learn to play.


Q: Will there be Power Pack options to purchase BOLT?

A: Yes, BOLT will be available in a 15 pack Power Pack, ideal for classroom or group learning settings.

Q: Where can you purchase BOLT?
A: Sphero.com, Apple (exclusive 2 weeks), Best Buy, Amazon



Once your students master the basics, the possibilities are truly endless for using BOLT in the classroom.

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Brittany Washburn
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