Using inquiry-based learning in your elementary classroom – including coding education

Posted by Natalie Vanderbeck on November 10, 2018

Inquiry-based learning isn’t a new idea in education. While writing my master’s thesis, I studied science classrooms that utilized inquiry-based learning vs traditional teacher-led learning. To be certain we’re all on the same page, let’s define inquiry-based learning: “a student-centered approach where the instructor guides the students through questions posed, methods designed, and data interpreted by the students. Through inquiry, students actively discover information to support their investigations” (Edutopia).

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Topics: Elementary School, Hands-on Learning, Coding, Social and emotional learning, Technology, Collaborations, ROBOTICS, IN THE CLASSROOM, Inquiry-based Learning

Robotics: Connecting school, work, life

Posted by Patty Cooke on October 18, 2018

Administrators and teachers in the Yakima (WA) School District are determined to give their students every opportunity to succeed – in school and in life.

Already home to an extensive CTE program, the district has decided to give students even more opportunities by expanding their robotics programs. To that end, they’ve added nine TETRIX® MAX R/C Getting Started Packages, two Robotics: Urban Search & Rescue Challenge Sets, and 20 TETRIX MAX Dual-Control Robotics Sets to their program.

We had the chance to speak with CTE Technical Support Specialist Eric Franz about the district’s intentional efforts to grow robotics opportunities for students.

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Topics: Hands-on Learning, TETRIX Robotics, 21st Century Skills, USAR, STEM, Technology, ROBOTICS, Competitions

Ada Lovelace: Celebrating women in STEM

Posted by Tommy Ly on October 04, 2018

On Tuesday (October 9, 2018) we celebrate Ada Lovelace Day (ALD), founded in 2009 by journalist Suw Charman-Anderson to honor the many women in STEM (findingada.com); but you might be thinking, who in the world is Ada Lovelace? And why her? English mathematician Augusta King, Countess of Lovelace, more popularly known as Ada Lovelace, made her mark in history by publishing one of the first algorithms to be executed by a machine. And though the term computer didn’t exist in her time, this makes her the first published programmer.

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Topics: Math, STEM, Technology, Science, Culture, ROBOTICS, IN THE CLASSROOM

How to build 64 pages of robots

Posted by Lacey O'Brien on September 24, 2018

Building a robot is a process. There’s prototyping, testing, and eventually a final product. In fact, its a lot like how we build our catalogs.

Our goal for the catalog project is always to build a top-notch catalog for you – the builders, makers, coaches, and educators. We also know the final design needs to fit within a page count that is a multiple of 16. We start with prototyping to decide where and how the products are displayed and what resources are included, all while watching that page count. Then we go into the testing phase, reviewing our first draft for errors, things that might not have worked as expected, or missing information. Like with any build process, we generally reiterate, making changes to what we identified. After retesting until we’ve met our goal, it’s off to production and then ultimately to your hands (or screen). 

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Topics: Hands-on Learning, TETRIX Robotics, Activities, Technology, ROBOTICS, Camps

3-2-1 . . . Launch! Sending robots to the moon with ROVER RUCKUS

Posted by Preston Frazier on September 10, 2018

Saturday was a big day in the world of robotics competitions. FIRST® released the 2018-19 season game details about the earlier announced ROVER RUCKUSSM. It’s already a big hit with FTCers! Because who wouldn’t want to go to the Moon?

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Topics: TETRIX Robotics, Future Ready, Engineering, Technology, FIRST Tech Challenge, Collaborations, ROBOTICS