Launch the Engage Section
ACTS is what the teacher will do and ASKS is how the teacher will facilitate.
students that they are going to see how Coder cards are used with the Coder to communicate with the 123 Robot. First they will look at the symbols on the Coder cards to interpret the behaviors for the cards. Then they will see how the 123 Robot enacts the behaviors for several Coder cards.
- Show students the symbols on several Coder cards such as "When start 123," "Drive 1," and "Turn right." Ask students to predict what the symbols mean. How do the symbols on the Coder card connect to a 123 Robot behavior? For more information about Coder cards, see the VEX Coder Card Reference Guide Knowledge Base article.
- Show students the "Turn left" Coder card. Have them explain or act out what they think the 123 Robot will do with this card. Then, show students how insert this card into the Coder. Let students know that every project must start with a "When start 123" card. So they will add the "Turn left" card under the "When start 123" card. Then, press Start on the Coder and have students observe the behavior of the 123 Robot as shown in this animation. Were their predictions correct? Why or why not?
- Repeat this process for the following Coder cards, to ensure that students are making the connection between the symbol on the card and the behavior of the 123 Robot.
- "Drive 1" makes the 123 Robot drive one length of the robot, or 1 square on the Field.
- "Turn right" makes the 123 Robot turn in place to the right.
- "Turn around" makes the 123 Robot turn in a half circle to the right.
- Encourage students to be specific in their explanations. Rather than saying something like "It drives a little" or "It turns," ask them about how far or what direction the 123 Robot will move to guide students toward identifying observable 123 Robot behaviors that connect with each symbol.
one or two Coder cards to each group, so they can engage in this process themselves. What do the symbols on their Coder cards mean the 123 Robot will do?
- For younger children, you may want to continue a whole class demonstration of additional cards.
students carrying out the prediction, observation, explanation process in their groups.
Ask students to explain what 123 Robot behavior is connected with each card, and how the symbol helps communicate that.
- OfferOffer positive reinforcement for groups that are following directions well, and using good listening skills.
- Reinforce that the 123 Robot will only do what it is instructed to do - not necessarily what we want it to do. Many students think that the 123 Robot can respond to the Coder cards the same way humans respond to language. This can cause frustration when the 123 Robot does not do what they thought it was going to do.
- Humans are able to understand inference. The 123 Robot does not. If you tell someone to walk to the door, that person will probably walk to the door and stop. They will infer that you wanted them to stop at the door. The 123 Robot cannot understand this. If we want the 123 Robot to do something, we must use a specific Coding card to tell it exactly what we want it to do.
- Students should take turns throughout the Lab. Facilitate this by identifying that students will either insert the Coder cards into the Coder, or press the Start button, and partners should switch these roles each time they test a project.
- Hang the 123 Poster in the classroom for students to reference when selecting Coder cards throughout the Lab.
- Use printables as manipulative to support project planning - See the printable resources available in the Knowledge Base, and use them with students as they are planning and building their Coder projects. You could use the motion planning sheets for students to draw the path they want their 123 Robot to travel, as well as the fill-in project and motion planning sheets for students to document their Coder cards and the path of the 123 Robot. You can also use the fill-in Coder sheet for students to write or draw their Coder cards to "save" their projects.