The NXT Step - Assessing with Lego Robots
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The NXT Step - Assessing with Lego Robots

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Workshop delivered by Kent Pledger, Mid Calder Primary School, at the 2011 eAssessment Scotland conference.

Workshop delivered by Kent Pledger, Mid Calder Primary School, at the 2011 eAssessment Scotland conference.

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The NXT Step - Assessing with Lego Robots The NXT Step - Assessing with Lego Robots Presentation Transcript

  • Digital Natives
    • *every child born since 2000 has never known a world without the internet
    • *their brains are hardwired to think differently, more linearly, more compatible to the way computers work, why, because they have grown up in a world of programmable toasters, phones, televisions and gadgets of all kinds
    • *if children can build, play and understand games that work, it is possible that someday they will understand and design systems that work. And the world is full of complicated systems
  • Assessment is for Learning
    • If you don’t have a piece of paper in front of you and boxes to tick, how do you assess your pupils?
    • Practical hands-on 3 dimensional learning, to demonstrate their comprehension of a subject
    • Break your class into groups of 4 to 6 pupils
    • These groups ought to be made up of right & left brain children, ‘thinkers & doers’, different sexes and learning abilities
    • This ‘forces’ pupils to work together to problem solve
    • Make notes of behavioral changes, digitally record their work, facilitate & enable
    • I call this method ‘the great classroom leveler’
  • A Crash Course in LEGO NXT Robotics - Getting Started Meri V. Cummings, Ph.D. NASA-sponsored Classroom of the Future Center for Educational Technologies Wheeling Jesuit University 316 Washington Ave. Wheeling, WV 26003 Phone: 304-243-2499 E-mail: [email_address] URL: http://www.cet.edu/robotics/
  • Why Study Robotics?
    • Robotics is an excellent way to introduce the students to integrated areas (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics)
    • Students participating in robotics learn about careers and experience the same activities as professionals solving real-world problems
    • Everyone – girls and boys alike – should get a chance to see how much fun it is learning engineering skills this way!
  • The Least You Need
    • One computer (ideally, a school computer lab with LEGO MINDSTORMS Education Software installed)
    • One robotics kit, LEGO MINDSTORMS Education Base Set, per 2-10 youth - I recommend you start with a small group (e.g., 4 students) – 1 kit per 2 students is perfect – you might also want several Education Resource sets (spare parts)
    • LEGO MINDSTORMS Education Software to program the robot
  • After you’ve learned the basics, then what?
    • There are lots of robotics competitions kids can participate in, such as FIRST LEGO League (FLL)
    • The tournaments tend to include multipart, real-world problems and research and occur over specific time periods - for instance, the FLL challenge is released in mid-Sept. each year and competitions occur from Nov. through Feb.
  • The Problem-solving Process
    • What is the robot’s task?
    • What behaviors are needed to accomplish it?
    • Create the program – debug then download.
    • Run the program.
    • Is the NXT behaving badly (doesn’t do task)?
      • Check the robot first. If there’s a problem, can you fix it?
      • Next, check the program. Problem? Can you fix it?
      • Last, go back to the beginning and reread the task. Does your program really tell the robot what it’s supposed to do?
  • Challenge 1: Line Program
    • Create and test a program to make the robot go forward in a straight line for exactly 1 second
    • Save your program as your first name and Line (e.g., File  Save as
    • Maria Line  Enter)
  • Challenge 2: Square Program
    • Create and test a program to make the robot go in a square
    • Save your program as your first name and Square
  • Challenge 3: Light Dark Program
    • Create and test a program to make the robot:
    • Go forward until it finds a dark line
    • Stop for 1 second
    • Go forward until it finds light
    • Stop for 1 second
    • Reverse for 4 seconds
    • Save your program as your first name and Light Dark
  • Challenge 4: Tracker Program
    • Create a program to make the robot:
    • Go forward until it finds a dark line
    • Move forward along the edge of the line
    • Save your program as your first name and Tracker
    • Hints : You need a loop, and it’s easier if the robot starts at less than a 90  angle
  • Challenge 5 – Bump Program
    • Create a program to make the robot:
    • Go forward until it finds a wall
    • Turn moving backward for 2 seconds
    • Repeat these behaviors for 5 “wall bumps”
    • Save your program as your first name and Bump
    • Hint : You’ll need to use wait until Touch in for the first step.
  • Bonus Beep Challenge
    • Create a program to make the robot:
    • Go forward until it finds a line
    • Stop for 1 second and beep
    • Repeat for 5 lines
    • For fun, end with a different sound
    • Save your program as your first name and Beep
  • NXT Education Links
    • http: //firsthandtechnology .org. uk/Default .aspx
    • http://thenxtstep.blogspot.com/
    • http://www.thenxtclassroom.com/
    • http://www. educatenxt .com/
    • http://www. nxtprograms .com/index1.html
    • http://www. nxtprograms .com/index2.html
  • Robotics Web Sites
    • NASA Robotics Alliance Project http://robotics.nasa.gov/home.php
    • NASA Robotics Curriculum Clearinghouse http://robotics.nasa.gov/rcc/
    • Mars Exploration Rover Mission http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/home/index.html
    • Robotics Academy
    • http://www-education.rec.ri.cmu.edu/
    • FIRST LEGO League http://www.firstlegoleague.org
    • BEST Robotics
    • http://www.bestinc.org/MVC/
  • Sample NXT Programs Challenge 2 – Square with a sound Challenge 1 – Forward for 1 second Challenge 3 – Detecting Light/Dark
  • NXT Programming Details Select a motor icon (you’ll see a blue border around it) to open its control panel - displayed at the bottom of the screen Additional control panels for sensors and wait for icons have similar displays
    • Due to the limited amount of memory available for the NXT, all currently installed sound files should be deleted
    • Sound files take up a lot of space and should be used selectively
    • Use the same sound file repeatedly in stored programs to cut down on memory usage
    NXT Programming Details (cont’d)
  • Hands-on: Your Turn!
    • Use LEGO MINDSTORMS Educator to program the NXT robot to move in a square
    • Think about the robot’s required behaviours to move in a square
    • What motors have to do what for each behaviour?
    • Which behaviours repeat? You can loop them!
  • Curriculum for Excellence
    • *SUCCESSFUL LEARNERS
    • *CONFIDENT INDIVIDUALS
    • *RESPONSIBLE CITIZENS
    • *EFFECTIVE CONTRIBUTORS
  • Unlocking Hidden Potential
    • Games based learning is all about unlocking pupils’ hidden potential
    • Empowering pupils to take control of their learning
    • Encouraging pupils to mentor other pupils, share skills, work together and problem solve
    • Teachers taking on the role of Facilitator, and pupils pushing learning forward
  • Games are very good at:
    • *giving dynamic ongoing feedback
    • *presenting challenging learning experiences
    • *trusting in the ability of the player/learner
    • *nurturing growth mindsets
    • *maximising potential for peer assessment
    • *presenting purposeful and relevant learning opportunities
    • *ensuring assessment is not 'done to' but 'observed’
    • *giving players/learners the the best chance of success