Why robotics works so well when teaching kids to code and computational thinking?
Computational thinking or programming logic is something it is not so easy to teach kids at school. There are many complex concepts in any programming language and the fact is that most of children are not able to understand them in depth. So, what students would usually do is simply recite the pieces of code mechanically without much thinking.
The reason for this, lays in a simple fact, coding or programming is something quite abstract. Programming languages need to be connect to some real physical world.
Many students may also loose interest to programming when there is no practical outcome. So programming or coding for kids alone does not work too well.
To solve this problem Educational robotics was used as a part of STEM curriculums. The main idea of a robotics class and robotics class tasks-based learning methods is to improve students’ interest in learning, stimulate desire to continue to explore robotics, and support innovative thinking while laying a good basis for students’ continuing education and lifelong development.
By integrating robotics challenges with robot building and coding leads to increased interest in robots coding. It allows students connect the computational logic and task with real physical environment and that way see cause and effect as well as understand programming concepts better. For example, we may ask student in robotics class to code a robot to repeat something 10 times. If a student does not know how to program it, we show it and then we ask to program robot to repeat something 20 times and ask students to complete assignment themselves. In almost 100% cases students can easily do it. They also remember the concept and patter which they can reapply next time on a similar problem.
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