After learning about how computers store data and communicate students began programming an game in Tynker. This game Required an alien to tap other aliens falling on the screen to reward points for 30 seconds. At the end of the game points for displayed on the screen in a graph. Next students had plan and create their own reaction game as discussed in earlier in the unit as a way to help diagnose concussion patients. Students were for the partner to design their game and then he went above and beyond with adding extra elements to their project. They all really enjoyed testing out each other's games and providing feedback for how to improve their designs.
Fifth graders participated in some March Madness this wee with a robotic bracket challenge. Teams had to redesign their robots and compete against the other members on their team. Each team's fastest driver was then that entered into the bracket challenge where they had to go head-to-head against other teams. Drivers who won their head to head matchup moved on to the next round in the tournament until a winner was determined. Izzy was the champion for Ms. Boles's class and Sawyer was the champion for Mr. T's class. It was such an exciting event and I was so proud to see all the students work so hard and be so supportive of their classmates! Great job everyone!
Fourth graders have started a new module focused on computer science. We reviewed how computers use inputs and outputs and discussed how computers use a combination of 1's and 0's called binary to store data. They then had a chance to decipher secret codes in binary to unlock messages. Students then learned about a way to store black and white images in a computer with run length encoding. Students created a pattern of out of white and black shaded squares (pixels) and then wrote the code to create the image. Everyone had the opportunity to trade their directions with a classmate who then tried to recreate the image based on the directions. It was a great to see everyone try so hard to decipher each other's code!
This is my tenth year teaching and my second with Ann Arbor Public Schools. I spent the first eight years of my teaching career as a K-8 technology teacher. I joined AAPS last year as a Media Specialist and I am thrilled to be a part of PLTW this year! In my spare time I enjoy going to the gym, baking and spending time with family and friends!