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Single Page Statement of Work

 

Required Resources

-    Raspberry Pi (with SD memory card)

-    HDMI cable (or a variant; including HDMI to vga/dvi; any suitable cable to connect from the Pi to a monitor)

-    A keyboard

-    A mouse

-    The lesson plan (see chapter 1 for how to get started)

 

Our learning theory

The learning theory that was assigned to us is called “Constructionism”; it says that the goal of this teaching method is to reconstruct ideas from previous knowledge as opposed to absorbing new knowledge.

 

Themes Explored and Final Idea

The first theme explored involved creating a Virtual World through an interesting open-source software owned by Carnegie Mellon University and programmable in Python, called Panda3D.

 

The second theme explored was the creation of a Final Fantasy/Pokemon style turn based game. Players would be able to program their own moves and characters, and work through levels and missions to win the game.

 

The final idea we settled on did seem a little far fetched and/or complicated at first but has actually turned out very nicely. It revolves around using a mini computer called a Raspberry Pi to run the hit game Minecraft. Through teaching how to code the backbone of the game, kids would be able to build and design intricate structures easily and efficiently through Python code. This directly incorporates many STEM themes, from positional mathematics to architecture design and even some elementary physics. It also uses the constructionism theme very nicely (and literally) and by making the children visually build and create these virtual structures, there is also an immediate sense of satisfaction and gratification. We would give the students a final challenge to accomplish too, something involving a race through an individually customized maze.