ISTE 2017 Preview: Bee-Bot and Pro-Bot Are Back At ISTE 2017, Joined By Blue-Bot
Coding for kids is a big theme at ISTE 2017. Earlier this month we brought you an ISTE 017 preview of Bitsbox a monthly subscription service that teaches kids to code. ISTE also published the book “No Fear Coding: Computational Thinking Across K-5 Curriculum” by author and educator Heidi Williams.
Coding is a great way to teach computational and critical thinking skills to students as young as elementary age. Of course, it’s also a way to teach STEM initiatives to kids. All of the new technologies and offerings, teaching kids to code are amazing. There’s a variety of platforms available from hands on robot programming, to app programming, early levels of computer science. Researching back through the years the kids need to code movement of late started about three years ago. However, there’s a company that’s been teaching kids to code since 1979 and they’re back at ISTE again this year.
Terrapin Logo is the oldest Logo Language company in the country. They date back to 1979. Logo, is a programming language that was created with the youngest coders and programmers in mind. The language was designed in 1967 by Wally Feurzeig, Seymour Papert, and Cynthia Solomon.
“Logo’s most-known feature is the turtle (derived originally from a robot of the same name), an on-screen “cursor” that showed output from commands for movement and small retractable pen, together producing line graphics. It has traditionally been displayed either as a triangle or a turtle icon (though it can be represented by any icon). Turtle graphics were added to the Logo language by Seymour Papert in the late 1960s to support Papert’s version of the turtle robot, a simple robot controlled from the user’s workstation that is designed to carry out the drawing functions assigned to it using a small retractable pen set into or attached to the robot’s body.” the Logo Language wikipedia entry says.
Logo Language was offered as a way to teach programming to kids via the Radio Shack (Tandy) TRS-80 and the Atari 600 (also the Odysseey Magnovox system for those in the know).
The philosophy behind Logo Language is one that’s being re-instilled today in a variety of platforms, “Learning By Doing”. The language is designed to teach kids how to take projects, break them into parts and solve them step by step.
More recently, Terrapin Logo has developed very easy to use and program robots that help teach coding through easy to understand commands. Three years ago, our now 9 year old edtech reporter learned to program with Logo Language using Terrapin’s Bee-Bot robot as seen in the video above. They’ve since added the Pro-Bot and a Bluetooth enabled Blue-Bot which will be on display at ISTE 2017. You can check the robots out here.
Terrapin Logo would love to tell you the history of Logo and how easy it is to pick up, learn and teach, and how they truly are the oldest company at ISTE 2017, teaching kids to code.
You can find Terrapin Logo at booth 1162 and online here.
Check out 9 year old Tatum’s ed tech coverage of SXSWedu 2017 and TCEA 2017 here.