Greens Farms Academy
35 Beachside Avenue
Westport, CT 06880
Josh Burker, Lower School Coordinator of Academic Technology
Josh Burker, Lower School Coordinator of Academic Technology at Greens Farms Academy in Westport, Connecticut, uses Pro-Bots with third grade students who learn to program in Logo. This year, Mr. Burker started teaching Logo with Pro-Bots instead of the computer. Past experience showed that Pro-Bots helped students better understand what “left 90” means and looks like: Pro-Bot makes the concepts fundamental to Logo much more obvious to students learning to program.
The students spent two months learning to program Pro-Bots. They start by “putting themselves in the turtle’s shoes” and literally walking in a square. They are then asked to explain the process they went through to walk in a square. They then try to get Pro-Bot to drive in a square.
Once the students created a square procedure, some attempted additional polygons. They experimented with creating a shape and repeating the shape while rotating Pro-Bot. Another challenge the students participated in was programming Pro-Bot to drive a road and to stay within the boundaries of the road. Finally, some students programmed leaf shapes that they had the ProBot draw in honor of the fall colors.
Mr. Burker stated that using Pro-Bots with his students showed “Pro-Bot is a great introduction to the LOGO programming language but is powerful enough to allow further, deeper discovery and programming techniques.”