Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Full STEAM Ahead: 1st Grade Code A Program for Dot to Make Sounds

Code a Program for Dot to Make Sounds
Lesson Plan for 1st Grade
Prepared by Mrs. Yandell


Students will continue to explore using the five senses to explore our environment.  This activity will give our first graders the opportunity to learn the basics to coding while exploring the sense of sound.  


  1. Next Generation Science Standards
  2. Common Core
  3. Integrated Math, English, Language Arts, & Science
  1. The students will understand how God created us with the abilities to experience His creation.
  2. The students will use their five senses to investigate, describe, and compare objects.
  3. The students will use their five senses to enhance their writing abilities.
  4. The students will use their five senses to describe an object.
  5. The students will recognize how they interact with their environment through their senses


  1. Discovering the importance of our five senses
  2. Discovering God’s desire for our senses
  3. Learning to make observations using sense of sound
  4. Learning the importance of observations to identify characteristics
  5. Comprehension
  6. Problem Solving
  7. Creativity
  8. Planning out a series of instructions
  9. Write a program
  10. Test- see if your program works
  11. Debugging- find where you made a mistake in your program instruction and make, make changes as necessary!


  1. Ipads
  2. Dot smart robots


Steps to check for student understanding
  1. How does your sense of sound help you to identify things in our environment?
  2. Can your sense of sound help you learn more about your environment?
  3. Did your group work well together?
  4. Were you able to correctly code a program for your robot?


Students will work in groups of four and use the Blockly app to code programs to make Dot make sounds.  
We will spend the first part of class to go over how the Blockly app works, and review proper robot handling.  
Each group will take turns coding specific programs for their robots.  

Our first graders have been learning about using their five sense to explore their environment… so I thought it would be appropriate to teach coding as we explore sound. The lesson was titled... Code a Program for Dot to Make Sounds.
This was a great opportunity for me to introduce the Blockly app to our first graders!  I chose to use Dot in this activity so that the students would be more engaged in programming rather than all of their attention be focused on driving (Dot can only make sounds and change light patterns.) The first part of the activity, I spent time going over the Blockly app and showed the students which block categories we would use for today's activity (students must be able to read in order to use this app.)
For this lesson, I allowed students to use blocks from the sound and light categories.  Using the sound blocks, students could chose animal sounds, transportation sounds, weird sounds, and even record their own voice.  I gave them freedom to explore the app and create their own programs.  Students worked in groups of two or three and were instructed to take turns adding blocks.  Every student was very engaged and excited about this opportunity to use the robots.  
I would highly recommend this lesson for introducing the Blockly app to younger students.  

How awesome is it that first graders have the opportunity to create programs for robots!  

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