Bringing People Together
01. The Challenge & Solution
As the popularity of Educational Robotics was growing in late 2000, teachers were asking for opportunities of collaborating on engaging projects with their students. There was a need for creating communities of robotic users fanatics!
how to bring teacher, students and parents together to share their interrest for robotics plateforms..
02. The Solution
So I funded Robot Zone01, a Not-for-Profit Organization with four mandates related to the advancement of educational robotics in Canada:
- Promote technology in education to help retain students;
- Support teachers in the integration of robotics by tailoring programs throughout the educational years;
- Facilitate and encourage interaction between educational robotics enthusiasts;
- Develop and support robotics competitions in Canada.
03. My contribution in this project
Conception of yearly challenges
Each year, for the past 18 years, I have developed on average 5 challenges to offer to school (so that is about 100 play experiences). These challenges have always been:
- Relevant for classroom and after-class use
- Properly differentiated
- Fun, engaging, and challenging
I have each year to develop a series of best practices that have become the organization’s “branding”. To reach that:
- I have established a structure for the year challenge, so they are easy to understand, engaging, and relevant.
- I have established different “concepts of play” to make sure there was a good variety of actions and learning. For example, I have creates labels for our year challenges:
- Non guided driving robot challenge
- Non guided non-driving robot
- Guided challenge
- I have also grouped the best “robot game designers” around a table, so each year we have the best inputs and the best ideas. Kids are just in love with our challenges!
I have each year to develop a series of tools to help teachers and teams to implement our challenges in their environment:
- Each year, I have created a rule book explaining the “do and don’t” for each challenge. These documents are currently downloaded more than 10 000 a year.
- I have also created a set of challenge mats to give a common play surface for each team. I have conceptualized and refine the designs, and I have found materials and printed that are sustainable for school use.