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Coding with Robots at Battery Creek

Updated: Oct 25, 2023

With technology infiltrating every part of our daily lives, it is a valuable skill to teach students what the building blocks of this technology is - through coding.


Battery Creek High School students had the opportunity to learn more about robotics and coding thanks to a grant from the Foundation and the generosity of The Bargain Box of Hilton Head.


You may ask: What exactly is coding? Coding is the process of using a programming language to get a computer to behave how you want it to.


Ashley Smith’s project entitled “Let’s Be A Sphero Hero” involved purchasing Sphero robotic devices that were not only a big hit with the students, but also incredibly successful in teaching her students how to code. A win-win, right?


Student Operating a Sphero Robotic Device
Student Operating a Sphero Robotic Device at Battery Creek High School

Ms. Smith, a computer science teacher at Battery Creek High School, wanted to introduce the Sphero robotic devices to her students in order to expand the computer science curriculum at the school and allow the students to experience hands-on exactly how coding works.


The students were able to work with the Sphero Edu software to code the robots to maneuver around the room, change colors, and directions.


In addition to coding, the students had the opportunity to learn problem solving skills and how to seek out strategies in order to be successful. When the code did not work at first, the students had to determine where the “bug” or issue was and then find possible solutions to get the Sphero to move or do as they originally commanded. These opportunities helped to build resilience in the students as they often had to attempt multiple methods to reach the desired outcome.


Two Students Collaborating as a Team
Students at Battery Creek High School Collaborating as a Team

Another key component of the “Let’s Be A Sphero Hero” project was the collaboration aspect. Students worked together as a team to code the robots and worked with others to find solutions. In addition, they competed against each other in races and games, such as the golf game created by the students. A little healthy competition can be a good thing to motivate students to try harder!


Looking ahead to next year, Ashley plans to have units built into the curriculum so the students will learn coding, use the robots in a variety of ways, and then be able to share their skills with younger students at community events or school functions.


“The future opportunities are endless in the numerous things they can learn and do with them,” says Ashley Smith enthusiastically.


Turns out being “A Sphero Hero” involves a variety of superpowers – technology skills, problem solving and collaboration – all of which will help these students succeed not only in the classroom but also in life thanks to this creative project and the generosity of The Bargain Box of Hilton Head!


 

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