This Home Learning Guide will give you some tips and suggestions for helping your children enjoy a successful virtual learning environment.
How to Integrate Hands-on Learning with Virtual Learning at Home
Exploring Robotics lessons and activities are easy to have a combination of on screen and screen-free activities, so your child will stay more engaged with the assignments. Some lessons are easier to combine with hands-on projects than others. Exploring Robotics lessons have been optimized for Student Paced Learning. This is the easiest way to integrate robotics and STEM into home learning, without you having to be an expert in coding or robotics!
What are Student-Paced learning lessons? Student-Paced learning describes learning environments that allow the student to move through the material at the pace that works, without stringent deadlines. Self-paced courses might be self-directed, but often they are instructor-directed courses the student is given the option to pace for comfort. The content is usually provided in the form of previously recorded video lectures that supplement worksheets, activities and hands-on tasks.
The biggest problem we have now in this unique time is that a majority of the educational content is prepared in a traditional manner, where the teacher lectures and 24 students all watch at the exact same time. With student-paced learning, videos and step-by-step instruction can be done on their own, and teachers can check in on progress. Students complete activities and can demonstrate what the robot does via photos, video, or during a video meeting with the teacher. Each student can set their own path and it can be faster or slower based on their prior experience and learning style. Because robotics and coding might be new to both you and your child, having the ability to self pace is very important in the success of your child in the at home learning environment.
What is your role as a parent?
With schools closed, many parents are being forced to work at home alongside their children. Take a look at the checklist below to see more about what the role of a parent might look like during this time:
The primary thing every child needs is someone to show an interest and encourage them to continue. This is especially true with STEM learning. Students may face temporary frustrations until they figure out how something works. Say things like "I know you will figure it out, like you have before." or "Maybe we should take a little break and come back to it after lunch, or tomorrow." If they are stumped, it is a great idea to sleep on it. Our brains work out many difficult things in our sleep.
Manage your expectations
Your day-to-day routine will be temporarily changed, and the usual lessons your child experiences at school may not be perfectly duplicated at home. The difference between learning at home and learning at school might seem like a huge one, but anything your child does academically will help move your child forward regardless.
Accept that typical school testing schedules will be cancelled or postponed. But just because your child is not being tested, that doesn't mean that learning should stop. Children need to continue to use and learn math, reading, writing, and science or they will fall behind. The good news is these can be integrated into fun robot activities. STEAM lessons have Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts (including reading and writing), and Math.
Check your email for updates from your child’s school
As schools shut down and turn to distance learning, don’t forget to check for updates from your local school district. Remember to share any updates from the teacher directly with your kids, as they will be happy to hear from them!
Create a new “normal”, at least for now
Teachers begin every school year with the basics of setting up a classroom routine. As a parent, it’s likely that your household also has a routine that your family already has in place. But now that school is out prematurely, your usual daily agenda will also need to change to accommodate the new learn-from-home schedule. With that in mind, try to create a new normal, so your child knows what to expect each day.
What type of robotics systems are right for my child while at-home learning?
Not only is it important to make sure the hardware is in the right age-range for your child, but that the curriculum and lessons have been optimized for the grade level your child is currently in. Here is a grouping of STEM based robotic systems for each grade area.
We are with you and everyone that is doing their part to flatten the curve and help each other through this difficult time. Durning school shut downs, It is so important that students don't fall behind or lose interest in learning: especially STEM. STEM students will be the solvers of these big problems we face in the future.
We are ready with comprehensive robotic kits for at home learners grades K-12. Our curriculum is online and available for students to use on any device - whether at school or home. These kits help engage students with hands-on STEM and there are many hours of coding activities with each.
Virtual STEM Class from Home
Teachers can offer a virtual robotics class during a 1 hour schedule to engage students in coding and STEM lessons from home. Students participate in self-paced online Integrated STEM lessons. Packages of robots and materials can be sent home with students (or shipped).
Teachers and students can receive Free access to online STEM courses and discounts on our robots while schools are closed for COVID-19. Parents who are taking on teaching roles outside of a classroom will also find discounted Home School packages to purchase separately.
How it Works
Student STEM Lab Stations (Plastic storage boxes with a robot, math tools, writing and art materials) go home with students.
Teachers assign activities and students complete challenges each day.
Students access online lessons with step-by-step instructions and videos, complete the activities, fill out Google docs worksheets, and demonstrate their robot completing the challenge to teachers either with photos or videos.
Math and Science are applied during the hands-on activities.
Technical support is provided for teachers via email, phone, and video conference.
Top 10 FAQs: What to Know About Exploring Robotics Online Courses
Each curricula has 40+ hours of online lessons accessible from any device, and include coding, science, math, and engineering.
Teachers can assign 15 to 30 minute activities for students to complete each day.
There are tutorials with step-by-step instructions and videos built into the lessons, to provide self-paced learning for students.
A device (tablet, chromebook, or laptop) is needed for students to access the lessons and the Apps for coding.
Most lessons require a robot to try out the coding. Schools can loan robots to students, or students can purchase separately.
Worksheets are included as Google docs and are easy for students to fill in and turn in to teachers.
Teachers will receive an access code for themselves and one for all their students to activate their accounts. We can set up login accounts for you, or you can use school email addresses to set them up.
Getting started guides are included, and we can also schedule professional learning sessions via Zoom video conference.
Teachers will send students a web link and access code - there is no login required to other systems.
The online site does not track student data. Teachers will keep separate grade books and students send in worksheets, reports or create videos of completed challenges to demonstrate completion.
Please fill out this form to request this offer (teachers or administrators).
A new pathway for K-12 STEM, CS, CTE, and Engineering Programs
Students love robots, and their parents love these career options, so your classes will fill up fast with this program!
"In 2017 we are seeing more evidence of how not just IoT, but especially robots and drones will play a central role in our smart cities and automation economy." Michael K. Spencer, Medium Author
Exploring Robotics uses fun robots to teach the computer languages, power systems, technologies and electronics that provide the foundation for advancing to IoT engineering. Our comprehensive curriculum also provides lessons in Math and Science and cross-curricula projects, making it easy for teachers to integrate into classrooms.
Robotics and the smart devices that create the Internet of Things (IoT) are revolutionizing our world. The Internet and new IoT smart devices are not only controlling home systems but are also part of self-driving vehicles, industrial control systems, renewable energy, traffic systems, health systems, and many others. It is predicted that almost every industry in the US will soon be affected by these new technologies. The technicians and engineers who understand them are in high demand.
This pathway incrementally provides STEM knowledge from elementary through middle and high school to prepare students to become the technicians and engineers who are creating and supporting new technologies for homes, medicine, and industry. Students experience success and go on to pursue STEM careers by focusing not only on robots, but also the programming languages and coding: Scratch, Blockly, Basic, Python, and C. Students invent things and also learn the fundamentals of electronics using fun kits with Arduino, Raspberry Pi and other computer control systems.
The mobile robots in the pathway mimic the features of those used in warehouses, factories, security, hospitals, and NASA. Students gain necessary knowledge and skills to control and operate them, and build prototypes using 3D printers. Students also learn aerodynamics and hydrodynamics principles with a drone and hovercraft.