go4IT! - Robot Workshops for Schools
In this project, we are following a successful and sustainable concept for computer science education. The program consists of 2 levels; the first one is a two-day basic workshop for 12 to 14 girls, which takes place directly at school. The concept of these workshops is based on the project of TheTechnical University of Munich “Girls doing Computer Science” as well as on the Roberta-Projekt® of Fraunhofer IAIS. These workshops are intended for girls from 6th to 8th grades.
The second level of the workshop is a 3-day go4IT! advanced workshop, which is attended by interested girls privately during the Easter and autumn holidays. Additional information about the concept and structure of the workshops can be found at: go4IT! advanced workshops..
The flyer of the project can be downloaded here.
During the initial phase, girls in the grades 6 to 8 learn how to construct simple LEGO-Robots as well as “teaching” the robots what they have to do. The girls are asked to accomplish simple tasks without overwhelming them like: letting the robots drive along a line, follow a path or avoid an obstacle. The goal is to allow the girls to counteract the negative and false perception about the computer science before it is solidified.
Throughout the basic workshops, the participants are introduced in an oriented and playful approach to the technology and computer science, by touching, experiencing and trying out the key aspects. The girls should increase their self-confidence in dealing with technology, discover their skills and abilities and reduce their scepticism regarding the technology and computer science.
The workshops’ materials (in German) can be downloaded and used for your own workshops.
Note: In the future, it is intended to provide a second version of the basic go4IT Workshop, where we will work with B-O-B-3. In this context, we would like to thank our sponsor Synopsys for their support.
During this 2-day workshop, the focus will be on the small robot B-O-B-3. He is a programmable robot and you can teach him many great things. His eyes can shine in various colours and even blink; he knows how warm it is and he can recognize if his arm is touched in addition to many other things.
However, in order to let that work, he needs your help because at the beginning, he consists of many different parts and he is not programmed yet. First of all, you have to breathe life into the little guy by assembling his different parts which are soldered together. We will show you of course how to do this. When everything is combined and works fine, B-O-B-3 can be programmed. In order to do this, you will use the graphical programming interface Ardublocks, which provides the important commands as puzzle pieces and accordingly facilitates the introduction into the programming. Consequently, you will let the eyes of your robot blink in different colours and get to know the first sensor. During the second day, textual programming will be implemented which means that commands for the robots will be written manually. This will be a very interesting challenge, which we will accomplish together. Having this this done, the robot can do astonishing things like communicating with other B-O-B-3 robots. During the two days, you can document your experience by capturing photos and create a small collage at the end, which you can then show your friends and parents.
The interesting thing concerning this workshop is that you can take this guy home after the workshop and continue programming so that, he and you will be able to learn new interesting and exciting things.
For more information see workshopprogram (in German).
The workshops are supervised by a two-member, gender heterogeneous team. There will be at least one female supervisor, in order to convey the image of the female supervisor role model. The special charm of these explorative lessons lies on the role of the speakers, who don’t point out to the mistakes, but only encourage, support and advice the participants, which creates a pleasant learning environment. Particularly supportive is the fact that the supervisors do not belong to the teaching staff in the school. This leads to a bias-free treatment in addition that grading does not play any role.
A list of our staff members can be found on our team site.
Thanks to our sponsors (see here); we can offer yearly 15 2-day free workshops at schools in the region. In order to be able to allow the chance to different schools to participate in this fantastic project, we are using this finance model:
- As far as the budget is available, the 1st go4IT! basic workshop will be offered for free at one school (each year).
- If there is an interest on a 2nd go4IT! basic workshop during the same school year, it could be offered for an additional self-contribution of 300€.
- From the 3rd go4IT! basic workshop on, we kindly ask you to contact us early (firstname.lastname@example.org)(preferably at the beginning of the school year). Accordingly, we can discuss together the possibility of conducting this workshop and the possibility of acquiring a separate finance.
We hope for your understanding, since we would like to allow the participation of as many schools as possible.
Please use the application form to fill the request for your school..
We are looking forward to offering a go4IT! basic workshop at your school.