I love using Robots in my classroom! I teach fifth grade and my students get so excited about learning with robots. Here are a few tips I have found useful!!
Tip #1 How to Get Robots for Your Classroom
I received most of my robots through grants from Donorschoose. If you are not familiar with this nonprofit grant organization, click this link to get started http://share.donorschoose.org/n7MnC
There are two different types of Ozobots and I have both. One type connects to your iPad and has Bluetooth, the other one is much cheaper and students can code on paper with it. I’m having a problem because I have several iPads that don’t have Bluetooth, so now I have more robots than iPads that they work on.
Tip #3 Give Students Time to Explore with Robots
Just like any new manipulative in the classroom, students need time to explore with robots. Giving students time to see how the robots work before giving them instructions is important. This saves time during instruction time, because students have already gotten the chance to “play” with them.
Tip #4 Activities for Ozobots
Students work in groups to create a maze for the Ozobots. Each person has a piece of white cardstock paper and designs a path with a different code on it. Students put their pieces together to create a huge maze.
Tip #5 Making Time for Robots
I don’t want these robots to still be brand new at the end of the school year, so I need to find time to get my students using them. That is the million dollar question every teacher always asks! How do I find time? I have to be creative with this, so I find ways throughout the year to add in time for exploring with robots. Rainy day recesses in my classroom look more like STEM Stations. I have different stations set up with different activities. One station always has the Ozobots with a huge sheet of bulletin board paper. Students can work together to create a huge path for the Ozobots to travel. Another station has the Dash Robots and Sphero. Students can use the app Blocky to learn to code.