Today’s students need to be prepared for a 21st Century world; the 3Rs (reading, writing and ‘rithmatic) just aren’t enough anymore. The 4 Cs are four skills that have been identified as the most important skills required for 21st Century education: critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity.
Springfield Middle School is using Ozobots to help develop these crucial skills. Ozobots are micro-robots that students program to solve challenges. As a part of the Talent Development program, students participate in a six- week program where they learn to code using colour codes, or on an iPad using a drag and drop program called Ozoblockly. Students work in partners and practice negotiation and compromise skills, how to accept suggestions and feedback from a partner and how to solve the problem - all while developing their problem-solving skills!
Chloe, a grade six student says this about working with the Ozobots, “It can be frustrating when you think it’s going to work, but it doesn’t and you have to go back to your code to see what you did wrong. The Ozobot only does what you tell it to do, and if you tell it wrong, it does it wrong. It is so awesome though when it works! I love Ozobot class!”
Mrs. Van Loon likes how the Ozobots incorporate math and science into their challenges. “The whole process of creating a plan, testing it out and then making necessary changes, all while working as part of a team is the design process, an important area of the science curriculum,” she says.
Wednesdays are Ozobot day on the Lunch and Learn schedule and students who develop an interest in coding and Ozobots and want to further develop their skills come and work on more individualized projects. Computer coding is predicted to be one of the most important skills of the future and Ozobots are a great way to introduce our students to it!