Solar SPRK+ Lesson 6: Final Challenge and Presentation

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Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Engineering design; computer programming; Mars rovers
photovoltaics
Estimated Activity Length:
8 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will combine SPRK+ programming with the construction of a compatible chariot in order to guide their SPRK+ “Mars rover” to carry solar panels to a charging station.
  2. Students will present a final project to the class that summarizes their knowledge about the scientific background knowledge tied to this project as well as their design and testing process.

In this lesson, students will navigate through a maze using their SPRK+ in order to reach the solar charging station.  Students will redesign their chariot in order to meet the needs of this new maze in order to carry their solar panels to the charging station, providing energy for their rover to continue working.  Following the completion of... View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Lesson 5: Chariot Engineering Design

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Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
engineering design
mars rover
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will identify possible design solutions to have a Sphero SPRK+ pull solar panels as a portable power source.
  2. Students will work in groups to determine the best possible designs and construct and test these designs with their team.
  3. Students will determine the strengths and weaknesses of each design and incorporate these findings into further construction phases.

Students will work through the engineering design process to build a chariot for their SPRK+ that will carry their solar panels through a maze to a charging station.  Students will draft prototypes, test their designs, and make changes to their design based on the initial success of the chariot. View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Lesson 4: Electricity Fundamentals and Photovoltaics

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Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Electricity fundamentals; photovoltaics; solar battery charging; solar powering electronic devices
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour 40 min
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will determine how to create various types of circuits in order to power loads with different electric needs.
  2. Students will identify the electric needs of a Sphero charger and build a circuit needed to charge this device.

Students work through a number of solar circuit explorations that culminate in a challenge to charge the Sphero SPRK+ devices with solar panels. In this exploration, students will investigate the requirements of various loads, working toward the voltage and amperage requirements presented specifically by the SPRK+ charging station. View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Lesson 3: Mars Exploration Debate

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0
Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
research
debate
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will identify high quality scientific information through research that represents multiple sides of an argument.
  2. Students will communicate a pre-determined side of an argument verbally, using evidence to support their claims.

Students will research and then debate about the value of Mars exploration through robotic and/or human missions using a debate structure. View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Lesson 2: Sphero Edu Coding

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Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Computer Programming
Estimated Activity Length:
5 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will use block programming and Oval Language in order to make a SPRK+ perform a variety of motion-oriented tasks.
  2. Students will combine motion and sound functions using block programming and Oval Language.
  3. Students will track useful pieces of sequence code that they can reuse in order to get their SPRK+ to navigate a lengthy maze.

After working on a few Scratch drag and drop programs, participants will transition to Sphero Edu, a comparable drag and drop program for Lesson 2 to prepare to program a Sphero SPRK+ ball to navigate through a maze.  View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Lesson 1: Introduction to Drag and Drop Coding Using Scratch

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0
Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Computer Programming
Estimated Activity Length:
10 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will understand how to properly order basic blocks of code to program simple functions.
  2. Students will determine the steps needed to debug issues in block programming.
  3. Students will devise methods to achieve basic animation-focused block programming tasks.
  4. Students will combine music and animation to create music videos and simple games using block coding.

Students go through a series of exercises and projects/challenges to gain familiarity with coding, specifically with drag-and-drop coding. Students will look at Scratch, a free introductory computer programming language, which focuses on creative computing. After working on a few Scratch drag and drop programs, participants will transition to... View full description >>

Solar SPRK+ Unit Overview

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0
Unit:
Author:
Deb Frankel
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Computer Programming
electricity
solar energy
Solar Battery Charging
Mars Rovers
Estimated Activity Length:
10 hours
Learning Goal(s):
  1. Students will develop tools to use in the Engineering Design Process.
  2. Students will learn drag and drop programming with Sphero Edu (formerly Lightning Lab).
  3. Students will determine how series and parallel circuits affect voltage and current.
  4. Students will understand how to use photovoltaic sources to charge a SPRK+.
  5. Students will design a chariot to carry a photovoltaic power source for a SPRK+.
  6. Students will learn to program a SPRK+ ball and chariot through a maze.

This unit incorporates basic programming knowledge and solar energy into an engineering design challenge using Sphero SPRK+ robots. The theme for this challenge centers on the idea of Mars rovers, and the challenges faced in space exploration, specifically remote control of exploration tools and the energy generation needed to power these... View full description >>

Wave Attenuator Unit Overview

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0
Author:
Tabatha Roderick
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
9th
10th
11th
12th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Electromagnetic Induction
Faraday’s Law
Electromagnets
Magnetic Properties of Current-carrying Wires
renewable energy
Wave Fundamentals
Electricity Generation
Estimated Activity Length:
10 hours
Learning Goal(s):

1. Students will demonstrate energy transfer through space using electromagnetic phenomena.
2. Students will design a model that demonstrates that a current-carrying wire can induce magnetism.
3. Students will define and build an electromagnet.
4. Students will demonstrate electromagnetic induction.
5. Students will describe and model the energy transfer and transformation in a wave attenuator.
6. Students will build a wave attenuator using a diagram and selected materials.
7. Students will test the model wave attenuator they built.
8. Students will investigate variables that may affect the output of an energy conversion device (wave attenuator).
9. Students will interpret data to identify which variables increase electrical output for these model wave attenuators.
10. Students will communicate results from scientific inquiry to identify factors that are important to optimizing the design of a wave attenuator.

Through a series of learning experiences, students will experiment with the basic concepts of motion to electrical energy transformation. Students start by building a series of models that demonstrate the interactions between magnetic and electric fields. Students then apply this background knowledge to convert ocean wave power into electricity... View full description >>

Wave Attenuator Lesson 3: Testing a Tidal Wave Attenuator

Average Rating:
0
Author:
Tabatha Roderick
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
9th
10th
11th
12th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Electromagnetic Induction
renewable energy
Wave Fundamentals
Electricity Generation
Estimated Activity Length:
5 hours 40 min
Learning Goal(s):

1. Students will investigate variables that may affect the output of an energy conversion device (wave attenuator).
2. Students will interpret data to identify which variables increase electrical output for these model wave attenuators.
3. Students will communicate results from scientific inquiry to identify factors that are important to optimizing the design of a wave attenuator.

Students will test the efficiency of the tidal wave attenuator models that they previously built. They will determine variables on their models they can manipulate, such as wire gauge and magnet strength, and measure the effects of manipulating this variable on the success of their design. They will report their findings in a presentation to... View full description >>

Wave Attenuator Lesson 2: Building a Tidal Wave Attenuator

Average Rating:
0
Author:
Tabatha Roderick
Intended Grade Level(s):
6th
7th
8th
9th
10th
11th
12th
Subject Area(s) Covered:
Electromagnetic Induction
renewable energy
Wave Fundamentals
Electricity Generation
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours 30 min
Learning Goal(s):

1. Students will describe and model the energy transfer and transformation in a wave attenuator.
2. Students will build a wave attenuator using a diagram and selected materials.
3. Students will test the model wave attenuator they built.

This lesson is designed to build upon investigations of electromagnetic energy by applying these phenomena to transfer the kinetic energy moving in waves to electricity by building a wave attenuator. View full description >>

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