Drones Fly at Randall
On any Wednesday morning, the library at Randall school is humming and buzzing with robots, drones, and students eager to learn more about coding. Coding is the language we use to communicate with computers and what we use to build and run websites, apps, video games, and more. Learning to code is like learning how to speak and write in a particular language; a computer’s language. This is thanks to the work Library Media Specialist Katy Charles has done to expand her idea of having a club that focuses on coding and robotics.
Over the years, Ms. Charles robotics club has grown substantially, not only in popularity with students, but also with new devices such as drones, and different robots. Students have the ability to use and code devices such as Parrot Mambo mini-drones, Dash and Dot, Cue, and Spheros. During club time, students also have access to various online coding platforms to learn the basics of block coding. Students have been able to take apart old devices this year to identify the parts within a computer and how each part operates within the system. Osmo, Cubelets, Cozmo, Little Bits, 3D pens and Circuitry are also explored in this club.
“In today’s digital world, elementary children are not being provided with enough opportunities to learn the fundamental skill of coding. This club provides students with an opportunity to learn the basic skills for computer programming which involves critical thinking. Exposing students to robots is a fun and engaging way to pique their interest in coding” said Ms. Charles.
Alison Compagni is one of the students at Randall that is in the club. Alison said, “I like being in robotics club because I like using the robotics. The drones were easy to use when I was using the remote control to fly them. But then Ms. Charles had us use tynker app to code the drones to do specific things. Ms. Charles gives us a pathway on the rug, and I had to code it.”
Alison often gives up her lunch time, recess time, and study hall time to take advantage of going to the library and using the robots and drones. Students are eager to learn new things and Ms. Charles has worked hard to create an environment where it is encouraged to try, sometimes fail, but always try again!