Code Cube can teach coding concepts to kids
|Brittany Harris in Programming Tuesday, December 17, 2019|
Pitsco Education, a K-12 technology school has created a new coding solution that demonstrates coding principles sin a unique way!
The cube you see attached to students' wrists with LED images scrolling across the screen and beeping a little ditty? Oh, the students coded that themselves.
Pitsco Education's newest creation, Code Cube, is perfect for presenting coding concepts to boys and girls at the upper-elementary level. The wearable tech learning tool offers teachers and students a true coding experience – and it's not based around a robot.
With only one piece of programmable hardware, Code Cube is designed to teach potentially intimidating coding concepts, such as if-then statements and loops, in a no-fear environment. Students program Code Cube using block-based software similar to Google's Blockly; this application functions in a web browser, so the tool will always be up to date and no software installation is necessary.
"Students in today's classrooms are extremely comfortable being users and consumers of technology, whether that be through their phone, Fitbit, or another device," said Pitsco Education Senior Inbound Marketing Manager Pamela Scifers. "With Code Cube, we set out to create a learning tool that moved students from being passive consumers to active creators of technology, hopefully enabling them to understand the why and how behind the tech they use on a daily basis."
A free, downloadable teacher's guide with 10 standards-based lessons featuring a variety of open-ended projects is included with the solution. Each activity introduces a coding skill to students and then gives them free range to apply that skill to their Code Cube. Plus, each lesson has a corresponding video available online to enable students to read, watch, and then do.
As students work through the activities, they learn how to design and interact with the Code Cube's programmable 64-pixel LED screen, accelerometer, and sound output features. Some of the open-ended activities have students bitmap the screen to create a shapeshifting creature, draw up a treasure map, and celebrate a holiday in any animated or stationary form they choose as well as write a song to accompany their visual component; students can also adjust the commands to change based on the angle of the Code Cube. Because of this open-ended design, Code Cube puts the A in STEAM as it implements objective logic and code to develop something subjective, creative, and personalized. This means it's also wide open for teachers to create activities that enable students to showcase their individuality.
The Code Cube can be purchased individually or as a 10-pack. Each box comes with a slap band for Code Cube to be worn as a wristband and a USB cable for charging and connectivity to the software. And Code Cube has a long-lasting battery; the device turns off after one minute of inactivity to conserve battery life. If your classroom set needs a quick recharge, the 10-pack comes with five dual-port chargers.