IGNITE Fall 2018 - Page 12

Today’s Tech Challenge: Teach This Robot How to Dance How one school is using an army of miniature robots to introduce kids to coding. Standing just over an inch tall, they can race. They can dance. And perhaps most impressively, they can teach students of all ages to code — without kids being any the wiser. They’re called Ozobots. And at Notre Dame de Lourdes Elementary School in Swarthmore, teachers and students are embracing this robotics technology as a fun way to bring STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) subjects to life. The idea is simple: each Ozobot has a sensor allowing it to read and follow lines on paper or on tablet screens. Students draw lines composed of different colors — using combinations of black, red, green, and blue — to tell the tiny robots to speed up, make turns, or perform spins. In the classroom, that has translated to a multitude of engaging activities allowing students to combine coding and creativity. 12