[IAEP] GPA Notes from 7-14-09
solutiongrove at gmail.com
Tue Jul 14 23:45:11 EDT 2009
On 7/14/09, Anurag Goel <agoel23 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Here are some notes from GPA today (7-14-09)
> We got there around 10:30. We cloned new sticks with a new version of the
> Memorize Activity. The Memorize activity was supposed to allow us to use the
> Speak program to create voice tags for cards. However, Turtle Art terminated
> whenever we tried to create voice tags. We set up the projector and the
> computers before the kids came in.
Memorize 33 terminated when we tried to create voice cards (Turtle Art is a
The kids came around 11:30. We gave them their sticks and they booted their
> computers before taking a seat on the rug. Then Caroline began her
> Caroline: Today we are going to put a map of the Charles River into Turtle
> Art. Who knows how we can do that?
> Kid: We can use the “Show” Button
> Caroline: (Puts up map of CR)
> Kid: I don’t get it. How did that turtle do that?
> Caroline: (Briefly explained the concept of journals and how u can take
> information saved in your journal and import it into Turtle Art)
> Caroline: (Drags the turtle to the top left corner so the map fits properly
> with the screen)
> Caroline: How can we do this without dragging the turtle each time?
> Kid: We can use s-e-t-x-y
> Caroline: (asks kids for different x, y values to see which combo works the
> Most kids were able to guess the y value after a few rounds of guessing and
> checking. After we explained the concept of negative numbers, kids were able
> to better predict the x value of the starting position. The idea that (0,0)
> is the center really helped the children understand how the coordinate
> system worked.)
> Caroline: What button can we use to make the map bigger?
> Kid: set scale
> (Caroline played around with different values that the kids called out,
> even negative numbers)
I was impressed by how well the whole group could do the task.
It was also interesting that even after having done it as a group many of
the kids could not do it on their own. Some definitely could but many
couldn't. Next time I should try to count and get some numbers around how
many people are at each level.
I think maybe on Thursday we should break up the group and have the ones
that successfully got their maps done work on adding pictures from the field
Those that are still having trouble perhaps we should put them into groups
of 4 or so and have one kid at their computer and the whole group helping
that kid do their map. Then have the whole group go help the next kid.
I was pretty impressed with how well the kids retained information after
> just one week. Most of them remembered the functionality of more difficult
> commands such as “setxy,” “xcor”, “ycor”, “scale”. The kids were a lot more
> comfortable with the basics such as changing color, size, and simply getting
> the turtle to move around the screen.
> Next we let the kids go to their computers and open Turtle Art. The kids
> imported the map and labeled different parts. Some kids were able to import
> the map and label different parts as one series of commands whereas others
> had buttons in different parts of the screen and didn’t follow any
> particular order. An example of a successful series of commands to import
> the map and label the school is as follows:
> Setxy: x= -350 y= 300
> Scale: 65
> Show: Charles River (image file from journal)
> Setxy: x = -10 y = -50
> Show: “GPA”
> Kids reconvened at the rug after playing around with Turtle Art and getting
> the map to appear on the screen with proper scales.
> Caroline and student demonstrated how to label different parts of the map
> by making predictions for x and y values.
> Kid: How do I change the text size?
> Caroline: We can use the set text size. However the block must go before
> the show block. (This really helped kids understand the order of the bricks)
> For example, the setxy should come before show. Caroline now asked the
> students to create a simple program that labels different parts of the map
> all as one series of blocks.
> The kids then went back to the computers for 5-10 min until they had to
> leave. By the end of the 1-hour session most kids had a pretty good
> understanding of how a Cartesian coordinate system works. Some kids
> progressed quite faster than others as expected. On Thursday we hope to
> focus more attention on the kids who still do not have the basic concepts
> After the students left we worked on collaboration issues. We got rid of
> the jabber key and enabled logs. By the end of the day we were able to
> successfully collaborate locally with about 5 computers. Collaboration on
> jabber.sugarlabs.org is still a little flaky. Tomorrow we plan to test
> collaboration among the entire class locally.
> Anurag Goel
> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
Caroline at SolutionGrove.com
617-500-3488 - Office
505-213-3268 - Fax
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