Robotics is an area of study that allows the teacher to make interdisciplinary connections, improve technological literacy, and place children in situations where they develop and refine work-place competencies. The standards being addressed are dependent on the focus of the instruction. These lessons can be applied to the math, science, or technology classroom. The consistent use of documentation within the problem also addresses many communications standards.
The depth of the problem and grade level of the student determines the benchmarks achieved. Rubrics need to be developed that allow the child, parent, and teacher to be focusing on the same goals. At the middle school level where teachers are given the charge to “team-teach” robotics is the perfect integrator. The following lessons are designed to reinforce the relevance of their math, science, technology, and communication classes. Robotics gives children the opportunity to make connections to lessons they are already comfortable with as they begin to synthesize new concepts.
The following standards come from the Pittsburgh Public Schools:
All students write for a variety of purposes, including to narrate, inform, and persuade, in all subject areas.
All students exchange information orally, including understanding and giving spoken instructions, asking and answering questions appropriately, and promoting effective group communications.
All students compose and make oral presentations for each academic area of study that are designed to persuade, inform, or describe.
All students communicate appropriately in business, work, and other applied situations.
All students use numbers, number systems, and equivalent forms (including numbers, words, objects and graphics) to represent theoretical and practical situations.
All students compute, measure, and estimate to solve theoretical and practical problems, using appropriate tools, including modern technology such as calculators and computers.
All students understand and apply basic concepts of algebra, geometry, probability and statistics to solve theoretical and practical problems.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (ST)
All students explain how scientific principles of chemical, physical and biological phenomena have developed and relate them to real-world situations.
All students demonstrate knowledge of basic concepts and principles of physical, chemical, biological and earth sciences.
All students use and master materials, tools and processes of major technologies which are applied in economic and civic life.
All students explain the relationships among science, technology, and society.
All students construct and evaluate scientific and technological systems using models to explain or predict results.
All students develop and apply skills of observation, data collection, analysis, pattern recognition, prediction and scientific reasoning in designing and conducting experiments and solving technological problems.
All students demonstrate basic computer literacy, including word processing, software applications, and the ability to access the global infrastructure, using current technology.
All students demonstrate their skills of communicating, negotiating and cooperating with others.
All students demonstrate that they can work effectively with others.
All students demonstrate the ability to resolve conflicts in peaceful ways, including, but not limited to, peer mediation, anger management, interpersonal skills, and problem solving.
WELLNESS AND FITNESS (WF)
All students demonstrate leadership skills and the ability to work cooperatively in team sports or other developmentally appropriate group activities.
Traditional classes settings neglect the development of workplace competencies. It is important for the teacher to reinforce these important skill-sets if we are to prepare children for employment in the multifaceted workplace of the 21st century.