June 2017 - Thinking about Makerspace Year 2 and 3

I am learning about how the Internet of Things (IoT) works and how I can teach this topic in Makerspace Year 2 and 3. I am continuing to explore creative ideas and thinking processes about how to improve the quality of curriculum that I deliver to students.

Why this is important to me?

I want to better understand how this technology works and how to break it down for students. It involves using programming and digital hardware to create unique projects and potential solutions to problems. Some of it may be just be novel, and some more practical. Either way, to learn about it will advance my skills and understanding in how I can teach this to students.

I also feel this is an important topic for students in a STEM/STEAM focus program. I think that more students could be motivated into coding and engineering if they were to understand how exciting this technology can be.

Where I am with my learning so far?

I have been able to teach my students how to use an Arduino micro-controller and how to program sensors to interact with the physical world. This could be measuring temperature, measuring forces, or motion. The next iteration in my learning is to learn how to have a computer or smartphone control and interact with an invention over the internet.

What do I need to do next?

I need to learn more about controllers that connect to the Internet. Two examples that I want to explore are the Simblee and Particle Photon. (fig 1 and fig 2)

How am I going to do this?

I am going to find several resources related to this technology, mostly in eBook form. I am also going to take a course at Sparkfun electronics on making this (2017) summer, if time permits.

I anticipate that I will need to learn more coding skills on how to connect the internet these boards. I may also involve building a an app.

I also want to build an example project that is challenging and sophisticated enough that demonstrates all aspects of this technology. My goal is to find a project or create an original one myself. I want to get this completed by the end of August. One that I particularly want to make is this one.

I think it will an exciting project to do.

Particle Photon
Particle Photon
Simblee Board
Simblee Board