Welcome to Day 7 of the EVSC Student Digital Learning Challenge. Today’s post was created by the Thompkins Middle School eLeaders.
Get Rolling with Sphero
What is Sphero?
Sphero is a robotic sphere that you “drive” using different apps. Sphero is waterproof, durable, and connects to your device through BlueTooth. Over 30 apps can be downloaded for free for either Apple or Android devices. Sphero is fun for all ages and can be used to play augmented reality games. There are also programming apps available for Sphero, such as MacroLab.
Where Can I Get One?
This is a link to the Sphero homepage. There is also another device called “Ollie” that works in a similar way. You can buy your Sphero here, or from Amazon.com. The Sphero itself is $129.99 and comes with a charging station and two ramps. There are also accessory packs available with rubber skins to protect the Sphero.
How Do I Use Sphero?
Once you’ve purchased your Sphero, set it up to charge and grab your phone or tablet and head to the app store. There are over 30 free apps you can download, but we recommend starting with the basic Sphero app that allows you to drive. Once you’ve mastered the basic driving, there are other driving apps you can try, such as the Sphero Draw N’ Drive that allows you to draw lines on the floor!
Sphero in the Classroom
On the Sphero homepage, click on Education at the top. This page, titled SPRK (Schools, Parents, Robots, Kids) has free lesson plans that teachers can download for the classroom. The primary focus of many of these is using the MacroLab or OrbBasic app for programming. Students can program the Sphero to turn, spin, light up, and much, much more. Students learn problem-solving skills through programming a real object. Our team felt that a technology or computer class would be the best fit for a Sphero, but we could also see it being used in science classes as well.
Where Can I See a Sphero in Action?
We’re glad you asked! Come by the PEF Technology Showcase on Thursday (3/12) at IVY Tech from 4:30-7:00 and check out our table!
What Do You Think? As a student, can you think of a class in which you could use a Sphero? What things do you think you might learn with a Sphero? What do you think this device has to offer students and teachers? We would love to hear your ideas!
How to Comment
At the bottom of each day’s post, you will find a dialog box for leaving a comment. When you click in the comment box, you will be asked to supply a name and email address. Use your first name and your EVSC gmail address (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Only students who provide their name and EVSC email will have their comments posted. Comments will be screened before going live on the blog – this might take a little time, be patient, they will appear.
We are looking for comments that add to the conversation and make us think. Feel free to ask the author of the post questions, add your own ideas and resources, and share your experiences related to the topic.
Challenge extended. We can’t wait to learn with you all!