Introducing Teach Wonder

Introducing Teach WonderDid you know that Dash & Dot have made it to over 150 schools? That’s a lot of smiling and learning getting done!

Today we are launching a program called Teach Wonder that will provide teachers with resources, curricula, and community to make the most out of their experience with Dash & Dot.

Next week we will provide a Getting Started Guide, which will have everything you need to get off the ground running with Dash & Dot! And we will be releasing new curricula aligned to math, science, and ELA common core standards in the weeks and months to come. Our incredible community of teachers has already started putting together great lesson plans that we’ve consolidated on Pinterest.

If you’re using Dash & Dot in your classroom, please sign up below to get these updates!

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Introducing Teach WonderWant to bring Dash & Dot into your school?

This handy one-pager has everything you need to know about our learning objectives and educational pricing. Show it to your school, so they can learn more about how they can use Dash & Dot in the classroom.

Additionally, we recently launched a teacher ambassador program, where schools can raise money to use in any way they want, including bringing Dash & Dot into their schools for free! Simply sign up for a unique link, and then send it out to parents, friends, and your local community. For every purchase made from your link, 10% of proceeds will go directly back to the school. Sign up here.

We want to do everything we can to help you bring STEM to life with Dash & Dot, and as we grow we are always looking for contributors to our library of curricula! And we love featuring our teachers in our magazine, in the local news, and in our blog. If you would like to share any of your ideas, please email us at teachers@makwonder.com!

Oakland 2015: Robot Olympics at Joaquin Miller Elementary School

Oakland 2015: Robot Olympics at Joaquin Miller Elementary School

Back in February, the Girls Science Club at Joaquin Miller Elementary School in Oakland, CA held the Robot Olympics with Dash & Dot! Read all about it in this featured guest post.

Helene Moore has served as technology coordinator and computer lab instructor for Oakland Unified School District for 13 years, currently at Joaquin Miller Elementary. She is a proud parent of two thriving OUSD K-12 alumni.

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All apps now available on Android

We are happy to announce that Path and Xylo are now available in the Google Play store for Android users! Go and Blockly have also been updated with robot animations, performance improvements, and support for x86 devices. Thank you for your patience as our team worked hard to bring all four apps to the Android community.

Go to all apps

Please view our full list of supported devices here. We now support 15 Android devices including the Nexus 9, Galaxy Tab, and Galaxy Note.  As we test with other devices and expand our compatibility, we will continue to update this list. We also support Nexus 7 (2013), but apps on this device are limited to connecting to one robot at a time. For more details, visit our FAQ.

 

Introducing Wonder Magazine!

Introducing Wonder Magazine!

In addition to our robots and apps, we are releasing a bi-weekly magazine that gives you fun ideas for things to do with Dash & Dot. Our artists, play designers, educational content creators, and entire community have come together to bring it to your inbox. We are also always looking for wonder(ful) projects from around our community, so if you have created something you’d like to share, submit it here!

Take me to the magazine! 

 

Here’s to creativity: a new way to play

In the old days, we rummaged through our parents’ garages turning soda cans into hockey pucks, cardboard boxes into magical forts, and bedsheets into magician’s capes. We found joy in using our imagination to transform simple and unassuming things into the building blocks of something truly extraordinary.

Technology runs our world today, and our children are becoming more and more glued to their screens. We want them to grow up not being mere consumers of these digital tools. We need new ways to play that take them beyond the screen. As parents, we want our children to find their own joy in learning and become shapers of their own worlds.

Dash & Dot are modern-day tools that enable creativity. This holiday season, explore the world of coding with your children after a family meal or when the cousins come into town. And remember the spark of inspiration you got from that cardboard box or tire swing while you played as a child.

So here’s to creativity. We hope you’ll keep exploring with us on this next phase of our journey – helping every child question, think, and create. Every day.

Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code at the White House

This week, Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code with the folks from code.org, students from Newark, NJ, White House officials including the CTO of the United States, and President Barack Obama! On Monday morning, Dash & Dot sat next to the president and watched him write his first line of code: moveforward(100); The fact that the president is taking time out of his busy schedule to do a line of code shows how important he thinks it is for the future of education.

We attended a panel about the importance of computer science education with government officials, school district superintendents, and tech company leaders. The biggest challenge schools face in bringing computer science into the classroom is that most teachers don’t know how to code and haven’t taught it before. The National Science Foundation and code.org are doing great work in creating curriculum and professional development for teachers across the country. We are excited to be working with our pilot programs to forge the way in creating curriculum to make learning to code more accessible for teachers and students alike!

Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code at the White House

Hadi Partovi leads a panel of superintendents, thought leaders, and government officials about how we can bring coding into every school.

The next part of the day was the most exciting… Dash & Dot finally got to come out to play! Students from Newark, NJ came to the White House to check out tools, apps, and websites that help them learn to code. For each student in attendance, there were at least a few other adult observers, so the pressure was on to start writing programs! Many of these students had never coded before, and we were impressed at how quickly they were able to start creating and remixing programs in our Blockly app.

Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code at the White House

Students and attendees watching as Mark DeLoura, Senior Advisor for Digital Media, welcomed everyone.

Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code at the White HouseThe setup with desks and laptops was not quite optimal for mischievous robots who like to run around, so we created a makeshift hockey field right in the middle of the room! We had the students make teams of two to play a game of hockey with chairs in place of goals. Before long, they were strategizing about which way the robot needed to turn and how far the robot needed to go in order to get as many pucks into their goal as quickly as possible. “It’s easier to break your strategy down into small steps,” one student said, “that way, you can try it out and then fix your code easily.”

The winning faces were priceless. We asked them what the secret to their success was, and both girls said “teamwork” in unison. Learning to code, especially with tangible devices, not only helps build spatial reasoning and creative problem solving skills but also helps kids build confidence and learn to collaborate. We came back from the White House fired up and inspired to make learning to code with Dash & Dot a fun and social experience in classrooms.

Dash & Dot kicked off Hour of Code at the White House

Winners of the hockey challenge!

And this is only the beginning. This week is about more than just one Hour of Code — the Hour of Code movement hopes to light a spark so that students can experiment with different ways of learning and be empowered to learn beyond the hour. Teachers across the country are also starting to use Dash & Dot with their students this week! We can’t wait to see what they come up with to inspire their children to question, think, and create.

Follow the hashtag #makewonder to see what’s going on in classrooms in real time!