I can sum up this lesson with one word – Excitement! The excitement was mine (to begin with) but then it spread to the year 7 pupils, once I told them they would each get their own Micro:bit.
I’m sure I must have shown this class the ‘micro:bit introduction’ video before, but now it has taken on a new significance…now they had a physical micro:bit in front of them, flashing away.
My own experience has been similar – I have looked at the micro:bit website before but not really engaged with it in the way that I have done since having the physical device.
I am conscious that our departments method of delivering lessons has been altered from my initial plans. I originally wanted to introduce the concepts of sequence, selection, iteration before ‘coding’ – With the device in front of the class, they just wanted to see it do something. Our delivery method, for now, is to introduce the website, write simple programs using the block editor and then look at where sequence, selection & iteration fit in. I will evaluate the success of this approach in the coming weeks.
Following on from the lesson my HOD commented on how many different ways a pupil can confirm that the device will belong to them…
- “Is it ours?”
- “Can I take it home?”
- “So it’s mine?”
- “We get to keep it?”
- “Can I use it at home?”
I was asked a question that is one of the key issues relating to this device…
“What if I lose it?”
From my experience with holding the actual device and using it, I feel the pupils will definitely get much more out of the micro:bit by having the physical device, than using the on-screen simulator. I worry that the pupils who ‘lose’ the device are the ones who will lose interest…hopefully this won’t become an issue.