How this teacher uses story coding to spark creativity and collaboration

When coding merges with storytelling, you have story coding, in which students use computational skills and design thinking as they demonstrate creativity across core curricular areas.

During an ISTELive 22 virtual session, computer science, robotics, and design thinking educator Paige Besthoff demonstrated how story coding–combining storytelling and coding–helps students develop critical skills.

Story coding involves using computer programming to retell stories–students might summarize a story, write original stories, or use programming to create alternative endings to well-known stories. Teachers can use story coding to bring history, science, world languages, ELA, and even math into their lessons.…Read More

Are you teaching with Minecraft and Roblox? You should be

Millions of students use Roblox and Minecraft to create characters and build entire worlds. As educators search for ways to boost student engagement as they inject real-world relevance into their lessons, finding creative reasons to use these platforms in the classroom becomes their goal. Should you start teaching with Minecraft and Roblox?

“Why Minecraft? Why Roblox? Your students are already on these platforms and they absolutely love them. That doesn’t necessarily make for a great teaching tool right off the bat, but the engagement is there,” said Matthew Kreutter, a product manager for Connected Camps, during an ISTE Live22 session.

A Connected Camps team led session attendees through some brief examples of how they can begin teaching with Minecraft and Roblox with simple coding and building activities.…Read More

6 tools to help kids learn coding and robotics

Introducing students to coding and robotics gives them early exposure to STEM in general. This early exposure, according to research, is key to the future of the workforce.

Aside from the cool factor K-12 coding and robotics offers, students will learn a number of skills they’ll take with them well into adulthood, including creativity, problem solving, and the ability to fail without quitting. These skills stick around even if students don’t pursue STEM-related study paths or careers later in their lives.

Coding and robotics can be introduced in any subject, with a little creativity.…Read More

Why girls need more STEM role models

This story was originally published by Chalkbeat. Sign up for their newsletters at ckbe.at/newsletters.

My Advanced Placement computer science course is half girls and half boys. I coach an award-winning robotics team, Retro5ive, that is equally balanced between girls and boys, nearly all of whom are students of color.

Getting there requires combating gender norms and stereotypes every day. This fall, while conducting a two-week Tools and Build module with the robotics team, I held up a pop rivet gun and asked students what it was. Here’s a recap of an exchange between me, a boy who was learning about the team, and a few girls on the team.…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

SESI Kids Win Big! SESI Crixas TEAM from Brazil Are CoderZ League Champions in the Global Virtual Coding & Robotics Competition

DERRY, N.H – Feb. 23, 2022 SESI, Brazil’s Social Service of Industry (SESI), had a vision: To equip the kids in their network of more than 400 schools in all 27 states with the technological skills, knowledge, and tools to become the leaders of tomorrow—the era of Industry 4.0.

Between October 2021 and January 2022, over 50 teams from across Brazil participated in the CoderZ League, an international virtual robotics competition. All teams worked together to solve missions and challenges, while the top competitors advanced to the Brazilian playoffs. Team ‘Takamassa Numuro’, from SESI Crixás in Goiás (GO), advanced to the world championship which was broadcast live to audiences from all over the globe.

During the world finals, SESI’s students competed virtually with teams from USA, Ghana, Singapore, and Hong Kong—before eventually winning the title of world champions for the CoderZ League Junior Division.…Read More

The Steam Foundation Teams Up with MakerBot to Expand Access to 3D Printing for Students

January 14, 2022 — The Steam Foundation and MakerBot have teamed up to bring 3D printing to more students across the U.S. Founded by Aadhav Prabu and Akshar Raikanti, The Steam Foundation is a California-based nonprofit with a mission to make STEAM education equally accessible to all students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The organization, which is also run by a team of students, offers free workshops that teach 3D printing, robotics, graphic design, and coding to students as well as programs to help bring 3D printing into schools.

Prabu and Raikanti are currently juniors at Dougherty Valley High School in San Ramon, Calif., and have been teaching 3D printing for years. They were inspired to start the organization after seeing how engaged students were in their 3D printing club in middle school.

“When Akshar and I ran the 3D printing club, we saw how excited students were for the chance to use the Replicator+. For some of them, it was the first time they had ever seen a 3D printer. We started The Steam Foundation to give more students the chance to learn about 3D printing,” said Prabu. “We’re fortunate to work with MakerBot, a company which has the same commitment toward 3D printing in education as we do.” MakerBot donated 3D printing equipment and materials to support the Foundation’s mission and programs.…Read More

How coding shapes students’ future success

With unpredictability fast becoming our daily bread, what can be more important than preparing the next generations for future challenges? Every parent wants to secure the best foundation for their children, be it for primary school education, academia, work, or life in general. 

In this sense, research has shown us how coding can be relevant across school subjects and academic disciplines. Now it’s time to talk about the other advantages it brings, including the cognitive effects of coding on children’s brains.

This is how coding shapes the future prospects of children.…Read More

Ozobot Brings Learning to Life with MetaBot™ — the First Free Educational Augmented Reality Robot

REDONDO BEACH, CA – December 8, 2021 – Ozobot, global leader of programmable robotics and STEAM-based learning solutions for K-12 education that empower the next generation of creators, today unveiled its newest innovation –  MetaBot™ – the first free augmented reality (AR) robot for education. MetaBot™ is an interactive learning experience that enables all children to build coding literacy and create with technology in any environment using a single smartphone or tablet.  

Research shows that AR immersive experiences enhance K-12 learning outcomes and expand opportunities at all levels of learning¹. Starting today, students and educators of all backgrounds can unlock unlimited possibilities to learn with augmented reality and transform any space into an engaging 3D experience with MetaBot. Whether at home, in the classroom or on-the-go, students can use a smartphone or tablet to bring a 3D Evo robot to life instantly, right in front of their eyes. No physical robots, apps or fees required. 

“MetaBot is our answer to the digital divide and furthers our mission to democratize educational technology while also allowing us to stake a claim in the metaverse with education,” said Andy Fathollahi, CEO, Ozobot. “We believe every student should have access to STEAM education and equity in computer science, regardless of their circumstances or environment.” …Read More

Football Star Jonathan Jones Inspires Kids to Code and Get Active with Unruly Splats

This December, students are pushing their desks out of the way for the Get Active Coding Challenge during Hour of Code and Computer Science Education Week. Unruly Studios is partnering with Patriots football star and two-time Super Bowl champion Jonathan Jones to make computer science in K-8 education more approachable, fun, and physically active.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Jonathan Jones for a national competition combining coding with active play that will reach hundreds of classrooms across the country,” said Bryanne Leeming, CEO and Founder of Unruly Studios. “By teaching kids to code through games they might play at recess, we’re breaking down stereotypes around computer science education and bringing joy into the classroom when it’s needed most.”

For the Get Active Coding Challenge, students can build and play Jonathan’s “Playbook” of games including Race In Place, Relay Races, and the Cornerback Challenge. Students will create the games with Unruly Splats, programmable floor buttons that students code to light up, make sounds, and collect points when stomped on.…Read More