I have visited schools all over the world. From the poverty of South African Township schools to the richness of Newport Beach schools in California. I have worked with teachers overwhelmed and struggling to make progress and high achieving institutes in Shanghai and Singapore. Now and then I came across a school worthy of special mention. Oxon Hill Middle School is such a place.
Valiant Technology started working with educational robots in 1983. In those days people used Logo to program Turtles. Now you can use Roamer ScratchX to program Roamer. In this article I explain how it makes an ideal partnership.
On September 21st 2014, Roamer marked the UN’s designated Day of Peace by signing the Pledge to Peace – an EU call to action. Valiant formed a partnership with Convitto Nazionale “Vittorio Emanuele II”, school in Rome, who had signed the pledge two years ago. The plan was to create a set of Roamer activities which will provoke students to think about relevant issues and in some cases help them to develop some relevant skills. Before taking the activities to Rome it was decided to try them in some local schools. The opportunity arose under the STEM Ambassador programme for me to visit Bentley Wood High School for Girls in Harrow and Sydenham School in Lewisham. (more…)
This feature was first published in April 1991. In it teacher Marcus Topham explains how sensors transform the capabilities of a robot. In the original article Marcus explained what sensors mean to a robot and how where you find sensors in the animal world and in machines and some suggestions of how to introduce sensors to children. Of course things since those days the “connected world” has arrived and sensors are everywhere. However, the basic ideas behind sensors has not changed, so we have taken the opportunity to update the article.
In 1987 Bradford teacher Doreen Gregory inspired me to design an educational version of Big Trak. That was Classic Roamer. Tomorrow the world’s greatest cycle race, the Tour de France starts in my home town of Leeds. The first stage takes the riders through Yorkshire Dales where I spent a lot of my youth walking and potholing. This is a heady mixture of nostalgia and homesickness mixed with some Yorkshire pudding and French joie de vivre (I never expected to see a map with à côté de Buttertubs marked on it). I had to create a somewhat personal Roamer Topical Topic.