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ISTE 2018: Wonder Workshop Brings Code To Life Right Before Your Students Eyes

tatum-miller-iste2018-wonderworkshop-top ISTE 2018: Wonder Workshop Brings Code To Life Right Before Your Students Eyes

Wonder Workshop Will Bring Dash, Cue and A Lot Of Fun To ISTE 2018

One of our 10 year old edtech reporter Tatum F’s favorite edtech people is the edtech nerd himself Bryan Miller. When Miller isn’t trying out edtech gear and reporting on it on his own site, he’s the teacher spokesperson for one of Tatum’s favorite companies, Wonder Workshop.

Wonder Workshop is a special kind of robotics company for kids. The team behind Wonder Workshop is a bunch of committed educators who are exploring the depths of creativity, coding, STEM and STEAM by creating products that are fun, interesting and engaging.

When Vikas Gupta, Saurabh Gupta and Mika Greaves came up with the idea for their company in 2012 they wanted to created a way to teach kids how to code in “kid speak”. To do this, they needed robots.  They started with the robot pictured below, a kit robot that looks like it was put together in their garage. The robot could be programmed by adding different blocks to it. They went back to the drawing board.

“We wanted our product to have a low floor but a high ceiling. We knew that concepts are more concrete to kids when they are expressed in a tangible, real-world way” the company says.

The trio spent lots of times in kids homes learning what kids wanted in a robot. The original design looked too much like a car and girls didn’t like that. So the team went back to the drawing board, eventually shedding the wheels, and adding the eye. They were in business. They took what we know today as Dash and Dot to crowdfunding, selling $1.4M dollars worth of robots. Now they had the hardware, the teaching part, came next.

The edtech startup first started they went by the name Play-i, now everyone knows them as Wonder Workshop. They’ve taken Dot and Dash, and created free apps for smartphones, and tablets. The app allows kids to program Dot and Dash to do all kinds of things.

This year CUE was introduced to the Wonder Workshop family.

Wonder Workshop’s new Cue robot looks similar to Dash and includes:

  • 3 Proximity Sensors
  • Real Time Bluetooth
  • IR Robot Interaction
  • 3 Processors & Sensor Fusion
  • Dual Motors & Potentiometers
  • 3 Microphones & Speaker
  • Programmable LED & Buttons
  • 2 Powered Wheels & Encorders

With Cue, kids can program in drag and drop block language as they could with Dash but as their skills grow they can start coding using JavaScript.

Cue goes even more interactive with it’s companion app by allowing kids to choose from 4 unique hero avatars that each depth of personality, expressions and interactions giving Cue a real personality. Cue’s AI component takes on a real personality and can even text with it’s owner allowing their kid to discover each avatar’s personality.

Cue has several modes of play and learning. In create mode, kids can program Cue to their heart’s content mashing up commands and sensor input completely freestyle. Control mode has three auto modes using his Emotive AI (seek, avoid and explore). In this mode kids can have cue navigate tight corners, make cool moves and more.

You can see the whole Wonder Workshop family including Bryan Miller at ISTE 2018 in Chicago, June 24-28th, booth #5418 and online at makewonder.com 

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