How robotic gamification helped my elementary students love STEM

Coding is a necessary skill in today’s world, but it is relatively challenging to master, especially for kids. Its complexity is not necessarily because it is incomprehensible, but because it is a new concept for most students. This is especially the case for students in inner-city schools where technology is inevitably scarce due to systemic factors beyond the students’ control.

With numerous programming languages available, it can take time to pick a starting point. Educators have found a solution to this problem: gamification. Platforms like CoderZ offer virtual programming services where children can learn code through games. These games make learning code both fun and engaging for kids.

Through the CoderZ Robotics curriculum, kids learn to create, manage, and communicate with cyber robots in a virtual setting by inputting code. Block code is used because it is easier for children to understand and execute instead of complex text-based code. Learning is more accessible because virtual robots do not require hardware, space, or other associated costs.…Read More

CoderZ Launches New Code Farm Coding and Robotics Course for Grades Four Through Six

DERRY, N.H. – When young students learn coding, they hone skills – such as computational thinking and collaboration – that enhance their success in school and future careers. CoderZ, an award-winning, cloud-based robotics and STEM platform, is helping educators introduce computer science in elementary and early middle school with its new Code Farm coding and robotics course for grades four through six.

Created for teachers and students with no prior experience in coding or robotics, Code Farm provides 45-60 hours of self-paced, gamified activities with real-time feedback and step-by-step instructions. The course offers a broad view of computer science education through a variety of lenses: engineering design, algorithms and coding, ethics and the social impact of technology, and more. The course is aligned with relevant standards frameworks, such as CSTA and NGSS, and includes extension opportunities for middle school classrooms.

Learners use the programming language Blockly to steer virtual robots through tasks such as collecting fruit, avoiding obstacles, and even planting a garden of their own design.…Read More

Brainingcamp Releases ‘Biggest Update Ever’ to Its Math Education Products

AUSTIN, Texas, (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Brainingcamp announced a massive update to its digital math manipulatives. The update is immediately available, just in time for the 2022-2023 school year. The new Brainingcamp will enhance math education for its more than 7 million global users and counting.

“This is our biggest update ever,” said Dan Harris, President of Brainingcamp. “We’ve rewritten every line of code.”

Empowering Math Educators
From the beginning, Brainingcamp’s focus has been on delivering easy-to-use, powerful math education tools, Harris said. “Ease of use is incredibly important to us. We want students spending their mental energy learning math, not learning UI.”…Read More

CoderZ Launches League in a Box for “On-Demand” School and District Coding Tournaments

DERRY, N.H. – April 14, 2022 Schools and districts now can bring the thrill of virtual coding competitions to their classrooms and communities at any time with CoderZ Technologies LTD’s newest offering, CoderZ League in a Box. This latest version of the award-winning code-learning platform enables educators to create on-demand local tournaments in addition to participating in the international CoderZ League: the Virtual Cyber Robotics Competition.

While students can gather at a school or community center for a league tournament, the gameplay occurs on CoderZ’s online coding platform. Teams of students play together in fun “missions” by programming virtual 3D robots while learning the principles of coding. The teams can be any size though three to six students per team is recommended. The competitions can involve students in a single school or educators can invite several districts to participate.

“League in a Box is an easy ‘plug and play’ solution that enables schools and districts to create exciting STEM community events on demand,” said Yaarit Levy, VP Business Development. “This is a fun way to incorporate STEM in the curriculum and promote STEM learning throughout a district’s student population. In addition to students learning coding and robotics, working as a team hones their collaboration skills, achieving mission goals boosts their critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, and the competitive aspect encourages grit.”…Read More

CoderZ launches CoderZ at Home

DERRY, N.H. –March 9, 2022: CoderZ Technologies LTD today announced the launch of CoderZ at Home, a new version of their award-winning code-learning platform that’s designed for homeschoolers and kids looking to learn code outside of a classroom environment. CoderZ at Home takes an integrative approach to code literacy — combining STEM, computer science, and critical life skills to prepare kids for the changing demands of a digital future.  The flexible new interface lets children self-lead through the learning material without any need for parental guidance. 

“Homeschooling and self-paced learning is on the rise all over the world. But learning to code in a home environment presents a unique set of challenges and opportunities,” said Sharon Duchin, Chief Marketing Officer at CoderZ. “In addition, preparing today’s kids for tomorrow’s careers is more challenging than ever with the rapid-fire development in technology. No one is entirely sure what jobs or obstacles 2050 will bring, but one thing is for certain: the role of STEM and computer science will be pivotal.”

By using bite-sized missions designed to feel like a game and blending maximum engagement with a sense of accomplishment, the platform enables learners to gain problem-solving skills quickly and measurably. “We’ve used our combined experience as educators, programmers, engineers, and gamers to create a learning environment that makes coding feel like a game for kids, while empowering them to develop problem-solving, critical thinking and grit skills,” Duchin continued. “Following months of research that includes insights from a pilot study with our target audience, we’re confident that CoderZ at Home delivers an engaging STEM learning experience that will spark kids’ passion for STEM and coding.”…Read More

Sora “Content Bundles” Feature Empowers Educators to Easily Reserve Digital Books for Specific Students

CLEVELAND – January 18, 2022 – Educators who are looking for more efficient ways to support reading outcomes have a new solution: Content Bundles. This new feature allows educators to reserve and bundle digital books from their school’s Sora collection, offering exclusive access for select students based on specific scenarios. Using a code, the students can then unlock and read the ebooks and audiobooks in Sora, the leading student reading app available in more than 53,000 schools worldwide.

“Content Bundles is the very feature we have been looking to implement in our Sora shared collection,” said Ken Zimmerman, Supervisor of Educational Technology at Lancaster-Lebanon IU13 in Pennsylvania. ”This provides us with so many options to filter content to meet specific district, classroom and learning needs.”

Content Bundles are a flexible tool that can serve as an effective solution for many common education scenarios, both inside and outside the classroom. For instance, educators can:…Read More

Computer science claims slight victory in high schools

For the first time, a slim majority of all U.S. high schools–51 percent–offer foundational computer science, up from 35 percent in 2018.

The new statistics come from the 2021 State of Computer Science Education: Accelerating Action Through Advocacy, released by Code.org, the Computer Science Teachers Association, and the Expanding Computing Education Pathways Alliance.

The latest data reveals that disparities exist regarding who has access to and who participates in computer science education. Students who attend rural schools, urban schools, or schools with higher percentages of economically disadvantaged students are less likely to have access to computer science.…Read More

EdisonLearning Joins with Digital Learning Collaborative to Improve Online Education

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL – December 6, 2021 — EdisonLearning, a longtime innovator in public education and leading provider of digital learning solutions for grades 6-12, is proud to announce that it has joined The Digital Learning Collaborative (DLC), a membership organization dedicated to exploring, producing, and disseminating data, information, news, and best practices in digital learning.

“Online and blended learning have become powerful solutions to improve students’ access to a high-quality education, regardless of their life circumstances, socioeconomic status or zip code,” said Thom Jackson, President and CEO of EdisonLearning.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the spread of digital learning, we see the need for collaborative thinking around successes and best practices, which is why we are excited to partner with the DLC to transform opportunities and outcomes for schools, educators and students across the country,” Jackson said.…Read More

Are banned books challenges, or opportunities for innovation?

When I finished Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code, I began researching the validity of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene sharing a bloodline protected by a secret society. When J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was accused of promoting the devil and witchcraft, I dove into the series. When Oprah pulled Jeanine Cummins’ American Dirt off her Book Club, I put it on hold at the library. 

When the world makes a fuss about a book, consider my attention piqued.

Skimming the American Library Association’s list of most banned and challenged books over time, I’ve read more than my share, from To Kill A Mockingbird, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Diary of Anne Frank to Captain Underpants and 13 Reasons Why. I have to say I’m quite surprised Flowers in the Attic didn’t make the list as it made the 10-year-old me… well… blush.…Read More