Wonder Workshop Debuts Robotics PD Initiative for Teachers
- By Joshua Bolkan
Wonder Workshop, provider of educational robots, has launched the Teach Wonder initiative, a new program that leverages nonprofits to give teachers the skills they need to bring coding and robotics into their classrooms.
The new program taps local nonprofits, including the Allegheny Intermediate Unit, the Association of Computer Technology Educators of Maine, the New York State Association for Computers and Technologies in Education (NYSCATE), mindSpark Learning and Teachers Teaching Tech, to provide resources to integrate coding into their classrooms such as lesson plans and student activities, along with online courses for professional development and continuing education units (CEUs) in topics ranging from classroom design to lesson planning.
The first course, Introduction to Coding and Robotics with Dash and Dot, comprises six two-hour modules that teachers can complete at their own pace. It allows educators to "dive into theory and practice new concepts with creative and reflective learning activities, all while connecting with a larger community of like-minded educators from across the country," according to information on the company's site. "You may be able to apply the course towards PD hours or CEUs."
That course is designed for teachers of elementary-school students. The company plans to launch at least two more, according to a syllabus page on their site, including a second course for elementary teachers and another for teachers with students in middle school.
The states in which Teach Wonder will initially be available include Colorado, Maine, Montana, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Dakota and Wyoming. In addition to offering resources to integrate Wonder Workshops robots into their curriculum, the nonprofits will provide participating teachers a robot as part of the cost of attendance.
"The Teach Wonder program will provide New York’s teachers with the tools and support they need to introduce foundational 21st-century knowledge into their classrooms," said Amy S. DelCorvo, CEO and executive director of NYSCATE, in a prepared statement. "We are excited to bring this program to the teachers in New York, so that every student in every school can have the opportunity to develop the critical thinking and problem solving skills that are gained through learning to code and applying their coding skills through robotics."
More information is available at teachwonder.com.
Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.