*Free coding workshops available on Monday 21st May*
Register for your place now through Eventbrite
See coding come to life with a range of robotics suitable for all ages from Junior Infants to Leaving Certificate.
On Monday May 21st St Joseph’s National School, Kinvara, Co. Galway will hold the launch of their STEM Room and the 1st Road to Code event in the West of Ireland. St. Joseph’s National School in partnership with Wriggle Jr. are collaborating to support teachers in the use of robotics and development of coding in primary and post-primary schools.
Experts and educators will be on hand to demonstrate how coding can be introduced across the curriculum from Art and Geography to History and Maths. Get ‘hands-on’ with technologies such as Sphero, Wonder Workshop, Swift Playgrounds, BBC micro:bit, App Inventor, Lego WeDo, Augmented Reality and lots more.
Workshop 1 runs from 10am – 12 noon and Workshop 2 from 1pm – 3pm.
The Wriggle Roadcaster will also be in use on the day, a cutting-edge 21st-century mobile learning classroom that aims to help develop digital skills around the country.
Due to large numbers expected attendance is by registration only, for primary and post primary teachers through Eventbrite.
STEM in St Joseph’s N.S
So what is it all about? We love using technology as a tool to aid our learning and we are especially interested in developing our STEM capabilities. We have been learning the coding language Scratch for a number of years but now we are bringing it to life with an array of different robots which we can control through programming.
We have a strong history of innovation and achievement in traditional STEM subjects, this has been recognised though our awards of Digital School of Distinction and our retention of the Plaque of STEM Excellence since 2014.
We have identified that the next step in our digital progression is the establishment of STEM facilities in our school where pupils can explore using playful learning experiences and develop problem solving and critical thinking skills. Our vision of implementing this revolves around equipping the school with resources such as Dash and Dot robots, Lego WeDo 2.0 offering an innovative way for students to model reality, conduct investigations, and use design skills. The tools selected teach programming in an intuitive way – letting students bring their creations to life while sharpening computational thinking skills like logical reasoning, pattern recognition, and modeling simulations.
This is very much in line with the STEM Education Policy Statement 2017-18 which says:
“The foundations for STEM education begin in early childhood. From the earliest years through their play experiences and family environment, children engage with the world in ways that can promote learning related to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Young children naturally engage in early STEM exploration through hands-on multisensory and creative experiences. By engaging in these experiences, young children are developing curiosity, inquisitiveness, critical-thinking and problem-solving capacities which are built on through their primary and post-primary school experience.”
We applied for funding to SAP Galway for purchase equipment to make this happen and we were delighted when we were told that we were successful. This has been kindly supplemented by funding from the Parents’ Association. Since March we have welcomed Lego robotics, Dash and Dot Robots and Micro:bits to our school, along with 16 iPads to control them.
We have been having so much fun exploring what we can do with them. Please see our Facebook page where you can see more photos and some videos of our work so far.
Facebook Event Page https://www.facebook.com/events/219210015338011/
Eventbrite Booking Page https://www.eventbrite.ie/o/wriggle-jr-15387007329