Sphero (@SpheroEdu) is a range of programmable robots, often spherical in shape, that can be remote controlled or programmed with code.
Programmable devices can be an excellent way to engage learners with a hands-on experience of coding, which is an abstract concept.
Here is an example of a Sphero in action:
The learners in this video were challenged to make the Sphero follow a ‘fairway’ route on a golf course floormat. They had to measure the distance of each straight, the angle of any turns and then create an algorithm for the Sphero to follow the path and reach the ‘hole’. There was lots of trial and error involved in getting the right speed and duration for the Sphero movement blocks but they all got there in the end – even if some were over-par! This learning involved an application of maths skills and understanding, along with some new computational thinking and programming ones.