Several months ago we purchased some mBots, programmable robots which can be controlled using a derivative of Scratch. The robots are adaptable and can be made to follow a lot of different algorithms and with the purchase of add-ons are adaptable for higher level coding and exploration. At under £80 per mBot these are quite an inexpensive way to get into coding. We decided to purchase 15 to allow our pupils to share one between them to move on from Beebots and Roamers.
As part of the Future Technology Week I was organising at school I had to plan for year 2, 3 and 4 children to use mBots to code and explore. For the year 2's we used the app mblock on our ipads to allow them to use the intuitive drag and drop interface. For the year 3's and and 4's we used the the same software but get them to look at more complex aspects of coding including algorithm design, command sequences and control flow, conditionals, loops and using the sensors to solve problems.
At my side I had Digital Leaders, children with a keen interest in computing and they supported the teachers in the various classes over the week. The sense of excitement in the class was palpable and the results achieved were excellent. We have now got the teachers keen to try this and have embedded it into our progression document for Computing, so it will be integrated into our yearly practice. The possibilities are truly endless for what can be achieved with this impressive little robot and I hope to share more good pratice here!