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Marty Image

0.02: What is a Program?

60 Minutes

Lesson Overview

Now that learners have their own paper Marty prototype, we will start to introduce programming as a list of instructions. Learners will see how creating a program relates to real life. Learners will start breaking down steps to make sense of each individual instruction before putting together their own instructions.

Key vocabulary:
    Program / Programmer, Instructions/recipe , Code,

Content Sections

  • Learning Objectives
  • Warm-Up
  • Get Learning
  • Time for Practice
  • Unknown block type "youtube", please specify a serializer for it in the `serializers.types` prop
    Unknown block type "youtube", please specify a serializer for it in the `serializers.types` prop
  • Cool Down
  • Extensions & Challenges
  • Extend
  • Support
  • Additional Reading
  • 0.02: What is a Program?

    60 Minutes

    Lesson Overview

    Now that learners have their own paper Marty prototype, we will start to introduce programming as a list of instructions. Learners will see how creating a program relates to real life. Learners will start breaking down steps to make sense of each individual instruction before putting together their own instructions.

    Key vocabulary:
      Program / Programmer, Instructions/recipe , Code,
    • Steps for instructions, in order, sequence of a story
    • Tablet with Bluetooth 4.2+
    • Talking and Writing
    • Marty the Robot v2 (fully charged) , Paper Marty (created from Who is Marty Lesson), Student workbooks, Lesson Resources

    Learning Objectives

    • Create steps that tells something what to do

    Warm-Up

    Start by reading the text that goes with the presentation, 'Presentation for Who is Marty', in the resources section or use the separate Story text part 2. The notes will give you ideas for how to pace the text from the resource to support the presentation images.

    Ask learners if they have ever followed some instructions for a game, recipe, or something else. Tell learners that this is like a program and the person who wrote the instructions is like a programmer.

    Get Learning

    Following the text presentation, show the jumbled up steps for Marty making a sandwich. Tell learners that they are going to check if Marty has the correct steps for making a sandwich and if the steps are in the correct order. In groups or as a whole-class activity, learners need to think about what happens first, second, third, etc and order the images and text properly. The images on the Powerpoint slides could be looked at, in order, and learners could decide if something is incorrect and what needs to be changed. The work could be done by cutting out the sandwich file images, for individuals or small groups (included in the resources section), or the images could be rearranged in the PowerPoint file as a whole class activity. There is text at the bottom of each image with a suggested script.

    Take time to talk about what happens when the order is wrong. The images do show the jam being spread but they are just to show what the step should look like, in isolation. The discussion should occur when a step is shown that should have occurred before an already seen step, the discussion could be something like, "Hmm, this step says to get the jam. A step we already saw said spread the jam. Would you be able to spread the jam if you didn't already have the jam? No. What could we do to fix that? We could get the jam before we spread the jam." This discussion should result in a lot of back and forth, which is the important part of this exercise.

    There is no one right answer for this activity; however, getting the ingredients and materials ready should happen before the 'recipe' steps, and clean up.

    Time for Practice

    Have learners think back to the different moves that Marty could make, from the last lesson. Have them think about a routine, or a compound movement they do that they could get Marty to do. Think about each individual, small step that is needed to complete the movement. Have groups order the steps properly. To support the work, learners could use their paper Martys to model each movement; the paper Martys are not a perfect match for the real one's movements but the joints are appropriate. Also, the file called Marty Poses can be used by learners to sequence a routine for Marty. They can be cut out and arranged in the order that learners want Marty to perform actions. There are more actions than the ones available, but 8 may be enough for learners to chooes something they like. Alternatively, learners could take turns pretending to be Marty and carry out the instructions, one at a time. Finally, there is a video reminding learners of the movements in the presentation; feel free to delete the slide if you feel the printout or physical actions of the learners are sufficient.

    Take time to walk around with a device and a Marty to quickly code some of their ideas to show what their created sequence will look like, each of the movements featured in the printouts and video are shown in the video, below.

    Allow time for learners to think again if they have everything in the correct order or if there are changes that are necessary. Once learners have decided on the best sequence, either with the provided Marty moves cards or with drawings they create, record the evidence with a camera or fix the sequence on some paper that could be displayed in the classroom. If learners find that some of the steps they have devised do not appear in the sample movements provided, encourage learners to draw, and describe, their ideas; adult helpers could support the recording of the steps.

    Below is a second video displaying a potential sequence of actions that looks like Marty is washing a window or cleaning a board.

    Take time to have learners showcase their Marty sequence; if possible, display some of the movements with Marty. Alternatively, learners could become Marty and display their movements to the rest of the class. As learners display their program, ask them to describe for you what the movement or action is and what Marty is able to do at the end of the program.

    Cool Down

    Celebrate the created sequences. Share with the learners that, "You were able to create a program that told a robot what to do. As we continue our journey with Marty, we will be creating more programs for Marty to complete a variety of tasks."

    Remind learners of the goals for the lesson, "To create steps that tells something what to do," and, "to check that the steps make sense and work properly."

    Ask learners if they think they did well with the lesson using a familiar formative assessment strategy: thumbs up for good, thumbs to the side for OK, thumbs down for not so good; a green, yellow or red card, indicating their thoughts; a one to one chat about the learning; whole class feedback using a PMI (plus, minus, interesting) approach; or some other strategy with which the learners are familiar.

    Read the closing part of the story, to close off this lesson and tie into the next part.

    Carry out any end of lesson routines.

    Extensions & Support

    Extend

    Have groups come together and see if they can think of a way to make their program more interesting and complex by combining ideas.

    Support

    Have cards to remind learners of the order of the steps as they create them: 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th; or just 1, 2, 3, 4, etc. This will support those learners who become distracted with the images and forget the order.

    Additional Reading

    • Marty the Robot Educator Guide
    • Educator FAQ

    • Technologies: Craft, Design, Engineering and Graphics
    • Technologies: Computing Science
    • Literacy & English: Listening and Talking
    • Health and Wellbeing: Mental, Emotional, Social and Physical Wellbeing
    • Literacy & English: Writing
    • Computing, Design and Technology: Design and Technology
    • Computing, Design and Technology: Computing
    • CSTA Education Standards
    • Digital Technologies, Design & technologies: Design & Technologies
    • Digital Technologies, Design & technologies: Digital Technologies
    • International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)