by Jessica Yandell
Over the next few weeks, my goal is to make it into each grade level and introduce Dash & Dot. Over this school year, my plan is to create lessons and projects that incorporate our smart robots and pertains to each grade levels thematic units.
Last week, I had the opportunity to visit all of the fourth-grade classrooms and give them an overview how to program Dash & Dot using the Blockly app. The Blockly app is more advanced than the Go app that I used with the lower grades and is recommended for ages eight and up. I started their STEAM lesson by sharing a powerpoint that demonstrated how each block category on the Blockly app is used. I referred back to the lesson, “Explorers of Coding,” and reminded the students they have to give specific instructions when writing programs.
As an introductory lesson, I let the class split into groups of four to practice programming a Dash robot using the Blockly app. Their goal was to use at least one block from every category in their program. At the end of class, I allowed each group to share the programs they had written. I concluded the lesson by re-emphasizing how important it is to code specific instructions, or else the program may contain an error.