Technology4Good – micro:bit and SDGs

Iva Naranđa

Implementation: 12 – 26 March 2021

School: 2nd Primary School Čakovec (II. osnovna škola Čakovec), Croatia

Age of students: 12

This activity is organised as a project-like activity in the span of three weeks and it is a part of the eTwinning project Micro circuits for Mega solutions. In a collaboration with partners from Greece, I organised activities in my school that should increase students’ awareness about sustainability and citizenship, including relevant skills that students will need in their life. The main aims were developing problem-solving skills, coding skills (students used MS MakeCode), collaboration and teamwork skills, and developing communication skills in a foreign language (English language). Activities were prepared for the whole class and for smaller groups of students (extracurricular activities). Students participated in activities that included exchanging ideas with peers from other countries on the TwinSpace forum and using the BBC micro:bit for solving real-life problems with technology. In a collaboration with a school robotics group students created a traffic light and a simulation of smart city lights using the micro:bit.

Activity 1: Introducing the Global Goals

Students were introduced to the Global Goals by watching the selection of films on The Global Goals, available on http://www.globalgoals.org/films . We proceeded with a discussion „What are the biggest problems faced by people in our community, country and worldwide?“ and students wrote their ideas on the AnswerGarden.

Activity 2: How technology can help?

The pictures are the author’s own –(Attribution CC-BY)

Students were invited to think how technology can help? After a discussion students were shortly introduced to three activities and they could choose which one they want to participate. Students used MS Forms to vote on which activity each class will work. Students chose from the activities Spot the species!, Light-up fishing nets and A sea turtle safe beach light available at https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/.

In the activity Spot the species! students consider the wildlife in our county (Međimurje county) and consider how important it is. Students created a micro:bit counter to record three different species, fox, wild rabbit and roe deer. In addition, the activity Spot the species! provided us with the opportunity to present to project partners from other countries some local wildlife living in our county. Activities Light-up fishing nets and A sea turtle safe beach light took us outside our county, to the sea. In activity Light-up fishing nets students learned about the problem of bycatch and the potential solutions, and they created a prototype light-up fishing net using micro:bit. In activity A sea turtle safe beach light students discovered about sea turtles and created a prototype sea turtle safe beach light using micro:bit’s LEDs.

The pictures are the author’s own –(Attribution CC-BY)

Activity 3: Let’s discuss with peers

On the extracurricullar activity called eTwinners, students participated in the TwinSpace forum, in the Students’ Corner: Technology4Good Activities. Students chose the topic of their interest, exchanged ideas and reported all our activities to peers from other countries. Forum discussion was divided into four topics related to SDGs and my students choosed two of them, Technology4Good: Sustainable cities and communities and Technology4Good: Nature is the Key.

Activity 4: Technology4Good pledge

There was also a fifth topic proposed by our eTwinning partners from Greece, creating our Technology4Good pledge. The students added their pledge and in doing so acted as responsible citizens aware of the technology.

The pictures are the author’s own –(Attribution CC-BY)

Activity 5: Robotics activities

In a collaboration with a school robotics group we made two robotics activities. First, students used Fischertechnik “Robotics Set micro:bit” and made a traffic lights (traffic lights for cars, traffic lights for pedestrians and traffic lights for cars and pedestrians). To implement this activity we used materials available on Croatian and English language on the page http://didacta.hr/index.php?umet=14&jezik=2

Next robotics activity was creating a simulation of smart city lights using micro:bit which is related to the Global Goal 11, Sustainable Cities and Communities. The student created his own code for this purpose. The phototransistor was used as a light sensor, in the function of a light switch (turns on when there is no light and vice versa). During the simulation on the micro:bit, the LEDs show two signs – the sun when the sensor is illuminated (day) and the crescent when it is not (when it is dark).

Activities 1 and 2 were realised on the Computer Science classes (three groups of students) and activities 3 and 4 were realised on the extracurricullar activity eTwinners, all lead by teacher Iva Naranđa. Activity 5 was realised in a collaboration of two extracurricular activities at our school, the school robotics group lead by teacher Gordan Bartolić and the eTwinners lead by teacher Iva Naranđa.

eTwinning projects can help to make STEM education even more interesting for students and the posibility to collaborate with peers from other countries increase the students motivation. It is challenging for students to compare their ideas and results with the peers from other countries. One more value of this activities is that students make connections between the classroom and the world around them and solve real-life problems. All activities were well accepted by students, they had a lot of fun and discovered new possibilities how technology can help in solving the real life problems.

Resources:

http://www.globalgoals.org/films

https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/

http://didacta.hr/index.php?umet=14&jezik=2

Used tools:

https://answergarden.ch/

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/online-surveys-polls-quizzes

For more information please visit the TwinSpace:

https://twinspace.etwinning.net/121507/home

For more information on Croatian language please visit the project page on school website:

http://os-druga-ck.skole.hr/etwinning?news_hk=5630&news_id=1905&mshow=1149#mod_news

Videos about our activities:

Spot the species! https://youtu.be/LL3-rDYrFsM

A sea turtle safe beach light https://youtu.be/Q-GqdOnjIRk

Light-up fishing nets https://youtu.be/jhnoEymaizs

Traffic lights https://youtu.be/dUr_-Fq7-Kg

Smart City Lights – micro:bit https://youtu.be/dZcJsc12dAk

This entry was posted in 2021 and tagged , , , by Iva Naranđa. Bookmark the permalink.
Avatar

About Iva Naranđa

I've been teaching Computer Science at Croatian primary school in the North of Croatia since 2003 (II. osnovna škola Čakovec, 2nd Primary School Čakovec). I have always gladly participated in different projects. I am a member of the eTwinning community since 2012 and I participated in many eTwinning projects and other eTwinning activities. With my students I have been participating for years in the Hour of Code, CodeWeek, Bebras and Safer Internet Day. My interests are based on exploring topics dealing with ecology, environmental issues, protection of animals, art and technology.

4 thoughts on “Technology4Good – micro:bit and SDGs

    • Thank you, dear Georgia! It is always a great experience to collaborate with you and your students!

  1. It must be very exciting to be a member of Iva’s computing class with such real-life projects to work on. Students gain knowledge and confidence by DOING and there are many ways that they are challenged. Certainly the creativity of students is enhanced by these activities. Many congratulations for the excellent work!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.