Coding & Robotics
Dash Robot Gets Virtual World
- By Dian Schaffhauser
the education technology company that introduced Dash and Dot to
classrooms, has developed a virtual world with a virtual robot for
student access in remote classes. The digital simulation of Dash uses
the same Blockly
programming tools and curriculum that powers the real robots, and the
virtual neighborhood allows students to manipulate Dash through the
same movements and interactions.
Neighborhood," as it's called, works with the existing coding
curriculum, puzzles, challenge cards, previously written programs and
Wonder League missions for Dash robot. Code that students write is
interchangeable between the virtual and physical worlds; it will also
work for students who intend to compete in the Wonder
League Robotics Competition,
which is taking place online in June.
company said the new program has been used by 650 educators in beta
versions since its introduction during a virtual summit in April.
Currently Dash's Neighborhood can be accessed from within the Blockly
a Chrome browser or on Chromebooks. It is expected to be available
for iPads in time for the start of school in the fall. The software
is available at no additional cost with a Wonder Class
license; and that's available free to teachers through June.
Neighborhood is a game changer to get all students in my class coding
at the same time," said Tammy Fietkau, a fifth grade math and
science teacher at John
in Georgia, in a statement. "Students with no prior coding
experience can work step by step in puzzles, whereas students with
coding experience can plan a series of code in the virtual world,
make virtual Dash run the code, access the same code on their tablet
and then watch Dash move through the code. All students are actively
engaged, having fun, and being challenged!"
the school's closure my students were heartbroken and missed out on
our coding unit," added Danyelle Moreno, a STEAM teacher at
in Friendswood, TX. "With the Dash's Neighborhood simulator my
students were able to work on their coding skills and watch Dash
follow their commands. At this time, my first and second graders are
working on the built-in lessons and are raving about the program!"
more about Dash's Neighborhood on
the Wonder Workshop website.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @schaffhauser.