Implementing VEX 123 STEM Labs
STEM Labs are designed to be the online teacher’s manual for VEX 123. Like a printed teacher’s manual, the teacher-facing content of the STEM Labs provides all of the resources, materials, and information needed to be able to plan, teach, and assess with VEX 123. The Lab Image Slideshows are the student-facing companion to this material. For more detailed information about how to implement a STEM Lab in your classroom, see the Implementing VEX 123 STEM Labs article.
Goals and Standards
Students will apply
- How to instruct the 123 Robot to travel to the treasure on a class map using the Coder and Coder cards.
Students will make meaning of
- How to break down the steps needed to solve a problem, such as coding the 123 Robot to move on a map in an intentional way.
- How instructions need to be in a precise sequence in order to complete a task successfully, such as navigating the 123 Robot from Start to the treasure on a map.
Students will be skilled at
- Waking up the 123 Robot.
- Connecting the 123 Robot to the Coder.
- Ordering Coder cards in the correct sequence to accomplish the desired task.
- Following the process for turning on the 123 Robot, Coder, and connecting the Coder and 123 Robot.
- Starting a project using the Coder.
Students will know
- How to use the Coder and Coder cards to code the 123 Robot to complete a task.
- That the order of the Coder cards is the order of the behaviors performed by the 123 Robot.
- Students will identify how to decompose the task of moving the 123 Robot to the treasure on the map, into a series of steps.
- Students will sequence Coder cards in a precise order to create a project that moves the 123 Robot to the treasure on the map.
- Students will describe the importance of sequencing steps in a precise order in order to complete a task.
- In Play Part 1, the teacher will use the Coder and Coder cards with students, and engage in a collaborative process to identify the steps needed to code the 123 Robot to complete a task. Students will work with the teacher to create a project using Coder cards to successfully move from the start to the treasure, while avoiding obstacles, on a map created with the 123 Field.
- During Play, students will sequence commands using the Coder cards to successfully navigate their 123 Robot to the treasure on the map. They will use the highlighting and step feature on the Coder to connect the sequence of 123 Robot behaviors with the Coder cards in their project.
- During Engage, the teacher will introduce the concept of a "sequence", and students will describe why they think order is important to make their 123 Robots perform a task. Students will work with the teacher to create a correct sequence of behaviors to make their 123 Robots perform a specific task.
- In Play Part 2, students will identify the steps needed to code their 123 Robot to reach the treasure on a new map. Students will be encouraged to share their projects on the Coder with other groups throughout Play Part 2 and during the Active Share, and identify how they decomposed the task of reaching the treasure into a series of Coder card commands.
- In the Active Share, students will demonstrate the correct sequence of Coder cards, and start their project, to show the sequence of 123 Robot behaviors in action.
- During the Mid Play Break, students will describe why the order of Coder cards was important during their Play Part 1 experience.
Connections to Standards
Computer Science Teacher Association (CSTA)
CSTA 1A-AP-09: Model the way programs store and manipulate data by using numbers or other symbols to represent information.
How Standard is Achieved: In the Engage section, students will be guided through a demo to see how the Coder can be used to store Coding cards that represent actions. These actions will be executed by the 123 Robot as behaviors. Multiple cards can be used in a sequence in order to create a project. In the Play sections, students will have hands-on practice using the Coding cards with symbols to represent actions to be performed by the 123 Robot.
Computer Science Teacher Association (CSTA)
CSTA 1A-AP-11: Decompose (break down) the steps needed to solve a problem into a precise sequence of instructions.
How Standard is Achieved: In Play Part 1, students will identify the importance of sequencing the correct order of Coder cards in the instructions through a demonstration and discussion in the Mid-Play Break. Play Part 2, students will work in small groups to practice decomposing and sequencing the steps needed to navigate their robot from start to treasure. Students will create their sequenced cards in the Coder and then share their project with another group.