New wireless, tablet-ready robot-based learning system for elementary science curriculum teaches science and coding in a hands-on way

At the International Consumer Electronics Show, LEGO Education launched LEGO Education WeDo 2.0, a hands-on science solution designed for elementary classrooms using a robot-based learning system.

The solution combines the LEGO brick, classroom-friendly software and engaging, standards-based projects to teach elementary students essential science practices and skills.

With WeDo 2.0, students explore, create and share their scientific discoveries as they build, program and modify projects. Through a series of collaborative challenges, they deeply engage with science, engineering, technology, and coding, sparking a love for experimentation and investigation.

Teachers receive support through training, curriculum and built-in assessment. The result – a resource that builds students’ confidence to ask questions, define problems, and design their own solutions by putting scientific discovery in their hands.

Featuring curriculum that contains 40+ hours of lessons and activities built on key science standards for 2nd-4th grades, WeDo 2.0 enables students to engage with the science practices and engineering habits of mind by testing multiple designs through eight guided and eight open-ended projects.

For example, in the “Drop and Rescue” project, students are challenged to design a device to reduce the impacts on humans, animals and the environment after an area has been damaged by a weather-related hazard. Students can prototype solutions to a challenge where there is no single right answer, helping teach creativity and problem-solving skills. This also enables educators to tailor lessons to meet all students’ needs, no matter their abilities.

“Teachers know that science and technology skills are crucial for today’s elementary school students, but providing engaging projects that mean something in the real world is a challenge,” said Jeffrey Marlow, a Geobiologist at Harvard University and founder of The Mars Academy education and development program. “WeDo 2.0 offers projects that let students discover the surface of Mars with a model rover, or explore the Amazon rainforest through frog metamorphosis. These science lessons do more than just teach students facts to memorize – they represent an immersive experience that instills a deeper understanding of the scientific method and evidence-based reasoning. Not only are these skills central to science- and technology-based fields, but providing a platform for our students to spark that one idea that could change the world is something they can build on for the rest of their lives.”

The wireless platform includes a Bluetooth low-energy Smarthub element; an electronic-based building brick that is part of the LEGO Power Functions (LPF); a new technology platform for LEGO Education; one motor; one tilt and one motion sensor.

The WeDo 2.0 Core software is an essential and easy-to-use component that is colorful, age-appropriate and has a drag-n-drop interface that is graphical in nature. It also contains a documentation tool that enables students to document their problem-solving process and provides an assessment opportunity for teachers.

LEGO Education WeDo 2.0 is available on iPad, Android, PC, and Macs. Chromebook support will be available in the second half of 2016. A Scratch interface for WeDo 2.0 (both web-based and stand-alone) will be available for Macs in February 2016 and for PC/Windows in June 2016.

For information on how to implement LEGO WeDo 2.0 in your school, or how to transition to WeDo 2.0 from WeDo, visit www.LEGOeducation.us/WeDo.

 

Laura Ascione
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Material from a press release was used in this report.