Monday, March 23, 2015

Robot school

This app feels very similar to Fix the Factory and has a lego feel as it uses lego style blocks. The purpose is given right at the start - the robot needs his battery!

The things that this app does well, that some others don't, are the onscreen tips along the way - and the ability to tilt and rotate the board with your finger. 

If you don't reach the battery, your power runs out. Simple! After you've mastered the turns, you then get the open door command.

Your code is represented as blocks, or

You can select to see the code behind it.

I have got to level 6 quickly without many problems - and can see how this will appeal to my year 2 children. However, at level 6 I had a few attempts at debugging my code. I like how easy it is to reorder blocks and also that you can put your blocks at the bottom of the page whilst doing so in order to see the board and correct your algorithm. If you want to add something you just click the up arrow to access the blocks. 

If your algorithm doesn't work, your robot will have a crash abort (!) or it will run out of battery. It all makes perfect sense!

I have reached level 7, which scaffolded me to add a loop and explained why - to save energy.

Another thing I like about this app is that it provides a useful assessment overview with the profile pages. This can help you understand a child's skills even if you haven't been watching them. 

I don't intend to go any further tonight, but there are 45 levels in total. Tomorrow I shall let a year 5 from my code club continue with the game, to give their opinion. Although they are very closed tasks so far, I think it will appeal to a range of age groups at primary - and I've yet to find out what's in store in the next 38 levels! I know that it covers variables as I can tell from the profile page. Watch this space for the views of children.

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