Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Down
Author Topic: Starting Arduino Project At High School  (Read 12639 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Marietta, GA, USA
Offline Offline
Newbie
*
Karma: 0
Posts: 9
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Hello,

I will be starting an Arduino project on Wednesday!  My Arduino Uno and kit will be arriving Tuesday and I'm going to introduce my students to electronics with these items.

Hopefully, they will generate the money necessary (or ask their parents) to get their own kits and on the week following, we'll have a bunch of students engaged in this process.

My experience has been some fumbling around with the basic Stamp and a little bit with the Propeller.  This will be my first experience using the Arduino and I'm very excited about this endeavor.

I'll keep everyone posted,

Thanks!

millis
Logged

I wouldn't touch that if I was you.

Left Coast, CA (USA)
Offline Offline
Brattain Member
*****
Karma: 361
Posts: 17294
Measurement changes behavior
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset


Good luck. And be sure to tell the students about this forum for help if they get stuck at home with something. However be sure to tell them we won't do their homework assignments.  smiley-wink

Lefty
Logged

Topsham, Vermont USA
Offline Offline
Edison Member
*
Karma: 33
Posts: 1923
... in The Woods In Vermont
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Hi, I am working with a few schools and Universities with kits etc..

I have some how-to that you and your students might find useful:

http://arduino-info.wikispaces.com/

and for getting off the ground: http://arduino-info.wikispaces.com/GettingStarted-Software

One approach to making it easy to quickly and reliably connect sensors and outputs to Arduino is shown here:
http://arduino-info.wikispaces.com/BrickStarterSet

These kits are expensive to ship because of the size of the box.  We supply the contents-only to some schools at a lower price. Please email to inquire about this and an Educational discount. terry@yourduino.com

We also have some low-cost Arduino boards that are open source copies, and breadboard+components kits for schools that are not shown on our site.

I hope to have some curriculum materials available, abstracted from the things our customers are doing, but I keep getting distracted with new cool Arduino sensors and  stuff.  That's one of the Arduino risks you are taking  smiley

This forum will be a major help to you and your students; lots of nice people here, like Lefty...
Logged

Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info

Global Moderator
Netherlands
Offline Offline
Shannon Member
*****
Karma: 217
Posts: 13707
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, however in practice there are many...
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset


Please give the students a small introduction how to post code
- tell the goal of the project
- what they did / tried sofar
- what did not work
- what they expected
- what they got
- use the # button to post code (looks better)

The more they tell , the better answers they will get

Almost forgot, please tell them to spend a few hours on the tutorial and reference section of the forum, there is so much to learn there. And the playground is also a good place to learn some things.

Finally - The forum has a search function (upper right) please tell them about that function too smiley-wink

Rob
Logged

Rob Tillaart

Nederlandse sectie - http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/board,77.0.html -
(Please do not PM for private consultancy)

Topsham, Vermont USA
Offline Offline
Edison Member
*
Karma: 33
Posts: 1923
... in The Woods In Vermont
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Rob, That's a very good intro/reminder for newbies.. I'll use it for newbies I encounter... Thanks!
Logged

Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info

Marietta, GA, USA
Offline Offline
Newbie
*
Karma: 0
Posts: 9
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Wow - an active forum!  Sometimes, being new, ya never know but I'm happily surprised by the feedback.

Mega-thanks!

My goals for Wednesday

1 --> Introduction, show them some simple stuff that I can do, ask for their input, without boring them (these days, some adolescents tend to have millisecond attention spans - ha).
2 --> Ask them to search the Internet and find how microcontrollers are being used to solve problems, express creativity with art projects, have fun and blah, blah, blah.  Briefly, I will emphasize the power - and fun - of enhancing their problem solving skills using the Arduino.
3 --> Encourage them to participate by purchasing a Uno and a kit and bring it to class next time we meet.

As you can imagine, it would probably be most helpful if everyone started out with the same hardware.  Initially, and because I am very new to this, I was going to opt for the kit I purchased (link below) but I'm very open to any suggestions.

ALSO --> and this may be a big hurdle, the IT department WILL NOT allow me to install software on the student machines.  Besides asking students to  bring in laptops for this endeavor, does anyone have an idea how I can overcome this obstacle and get my students the software they need for this ongoing adventure?  We have 28 student computers, each has 6GB RAM, good processors, and blah, blah, blah.

Thanks again,

millis

http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/Arduino/A000028/?qs=sGAEpiMZZMu5STvjs3TtKoJlP2oS1NWb
« Last Edit: October 02, 2011, 06:08:44 am by millis » Logged

I wouldn't touch that if I was you.

Topsham, Vermont USA
Offline Offline
Edison Member
*
Karma: 33
Posts: 1923
... in The Woods In Vermont
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Quote
IT department WILL NOT allow me to install software on the student machines.

Some schools are still in a dark ages. Remember when the teacher knew everything, and the students just received it (and forgot it)..

Any modern school has an environment of INQUIRY, where students take some responsibility for their own learning, and ideas are openly discussed and collaboration is key, for both students and teachers.

IT in some schools is like modern schools, collaborative, open to discussion. But some IT is OldSkool, control freaks.

Management/Director has to get involved. Make IT do a test installation on a machine. Point out that HUNDREDS of Universities and HighSchools are using this Educational Open Source Software.  Point out that the only reason Admin rights are needed is to INSTALL A USB DRIVER.  The rest IS NOT INSTALLED, just copied to a folder. Try it out. 

GGrrr.....
Logged

Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info

Topsham, Vermont USA
Offline Offline
Edison Member
*
Karma: 33
Posts: 1923
... in The Woods In Vermont
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Quote

Wow!  $54 for that??

I can get you a kit with all that and more AND an Arduino Open Source Copy microcomputer board with USB cable, for less than$50 US. Email me: terry@yourduino.com

DISCLAIMER: Mentioned stuff from my own shop...
Logged

Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info

Global Moderator
Netherlands
Offline Offline
Shannon Member
*****
Karma: 217
Posts: 13707
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, however in practice there are many...
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Quote
ALSO --> and this may be a big hurdle, the IT department WILL NOT allow me to install software on the student machines.  Besides asking students to  bring in laptops for this endeavor, does anyone have an idea how I can overcome this obstacle and get my students the software they need for this ongoing adventure?  We have 28 student computers, each has 6GB RAM, good processors, and blah, blah, blah.

scenario 1:
Ask the IT department for some old 1GB windows XP machines to play with. They are more than fast enough to run the IDE22.
Let them make a ghost image of a clean install, that can be copied to all of them, very easily. And let the students keep their sketches on a USBstick.

advantages:
- all freedom
- easy to repair
- reuse of otherwise "old" hardware

scenario 2:
I never tried, but maybe one could run the Arduino in VMware.. (make a virtual PC on the 6GB machines running the Arduino environment)

tip: - http://www.earthshineelectronics.com/files/ASKManualRev5.pdf -
Logged

Rob Tillaart

Nederlandse sectie - http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/board,77.0.html -
(Please do not PM for private consultancy)

Marietta, GA, USA
Offline Offline
Newbie
*
Karma: 0
Posts: 9
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset


Some schools are still in a dark ages. Remember when the teacher knew everything, and the students just received it (and forgot it)..

It's ironic how educators - the people who are supposed to be engaged in the art of learning - know so little about the educational realm!  In fact, one of my education professors told our class "Some teachers started teaching wrong their first year and have continued doing it that way for the last thirty years"

Virtually always, I am very much against the objectivist methodology - this deployment & assessment technique is "dark ages" indeed.  I'm proactively in the constructivist camp - and proud to be here.  I've studied and employed the benefits from pedagogical, andragogical, and heutagogical systems.

Today in public education we see an unrealistic and unnecessary emphasis on high stakes testing which has literally become the god of education convincing the local administrators what should be driving the motivation for and defining the direction of what occurs.  Why should anyone really think about or care what's truly best for students?   . . . ?  Oh, I know, you can't document that in a bar chart and the higher the bars which provide links to administrative "image security."

Rant over - sorry.

The machines in our room had Windows 7 Pro removed in favor of XP 64 (the IT dept did not want to support yet another OS, from what I'm told).  I have a large, thick XP book which may help me unlock the prohibition instituted by the IT department which so often eliminates the students from using software that would be essential in not only accomplishing the standards I'm required to teach, but also the opportunities to explore additional information and experience challenging events like the Arduino projects.

I have almost finalized my decision to require students bring in their laptop computers in order to accomplish our goals.  Asking IT for old computers - ha!  That would require forms, paperwork and a willing department to cooperate.  I don't mind the first two, but the last one simply does not exist.  This is just one of the many reasons why this will be my last - and hopefully my best - year of teaching in this district.  I cannot ever be satisfied in an environment where unnecessary restrictions are imposed which restrict or prohibit my ability to teach, more important, their ability to learn.

Uh oh, another rant, sorry.

If the laptop requirement was imposed, my participation level would involve very few number of students.  Also, please keep in mind our school district includes students who 75% of them qualify for receiving free or reduced lunches - lots of poverty.  I am even willing to purchase four of these kits with my own money to help out but I am unsure if I'm really going to make a difference or if this will spin into another frustrating, uneventful experience regardless of the intentions to provide a useful, educationally rewarding, and FUN experience.

Maybe I'll discover a local authority/corporation who will donate a few laptops for my computer lab and I'll toss on Linux Mint and create my own wireless intranet and all the applications will be available for our learning purposes and . . . I can still dream, right? 

As I have been reprimanded previously for asking for "too much" IT support, I cannot afford to "push" the IT requirements in my classroom:  I want a stellar recommendation from my boss when I apply for another job.  BTW, I offered to manage all the requirements of the existing machines in my lab and expressed how I used to do this for sixteen years before I began teaching in public education.  Nope, not wanted, the boss recently paid an IT consulting firm thousands of dollars to have our machines upgraded with software we're leasing from a vendor.

Regardless, I will do what I can with what I have.  I am not getting paid for the after school club I'm required to sponsor so I am going to take control - as much as I can - and provide these students with Arduino projects they will hopefully embrace and we'll all be better for this endeavor, having FUN along the journey!  smiley

Sorry to rant - too much coffee this morning (ha).
« Last Edit: October 02, 2011, 08:18:53 am by millis » Logged

I wouldn't touch that if I was you.

Global Moderator
Netherlands
Offline Offline
Shannon Member
*****
Karma: 217
Posts: 13707
In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, however in practice there are many...
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset


Maybe you should talk to the local computer shop or put an ad in the local paper for old PC's. Maybe there is a big firm in Atlanta (?) that could help you out.
Or the Southern Polytechnic State University (or is that your school?) - I expect an university has some PC's to share and most universities like students with hands on experience...

OrDobbins Airforce base? Life University? When I googled maps for "Computer Store marietta GA" it came up with 9 shops....

No, I'm not familiar with Marietta, just used Google maps to locate some firms smiley



Logged

Rob Tillaart

Nederlandse sectie - http://arduino.cc/forum/index.php/board,77.0.html -
(Please do not PM for private consultancy)

Topsham, Vermont USA
Offline Offline
Edison Member
*
Karma: 33
Posts: 1923
... in The Woods In Vermont
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

OK. I limit myself to 5 mins a day complaining about "professional" IT, and my wife, who has worked in good to excellent private schools outside the USA education envelope for 8 years, and is very technology literate, takes up about 3 mins a day.

But it's the weekend.

I can not understand how management at any endeavor can not believe that IT is a service to it's customers, who are the company employees who will make or break the company. Unless it's a school.  Customer Service, Customer understanding, Customer collaboration, Customer Respect!  

Dammit, I was once the Personal Computer Coordinator for the Manufacturing and Laboratory site of a big 3-letter company. There were 8200 employees and about 5000 were personal computer users.  I didn't do that alone; I had a department of talented and hard-working people and a manager who took the non-technical non-user stuff off our backs.  Our job was to enable those 5000 customers (most within walking distance of my office!) to get their job done as efficiently and intelligently as possible.  And anticipate their needs and next years hardware and software and network changes.  If management decided, after consultation with the Customers, that certain software or hardware was needed, our job was to make it happen and help the Customer be productive.

Now, some customers will never be happy or satisfied. Human nature. But you can't let that color your approach to the NEXT customer, and withdraw into Defensive IT.

I could go on, but the only point is IT is NOT an end in itself, it's only a TOOL for productive work. it is a SERVICE to CUSTOMERs.

GGrr....

These days, I am blissfully (well, except for a couple of Windows7 issues) IT support for 2 people.  And we love each other already  smiley-wink
« Last Edit: October 02, 2011, 12:02:22 pm by terryking228 » Logged

Regards, Terry King terry@yourduino.com  - Check great prices, devices and Arduino-related boards at http://YourDuino.com
HOW-TO: http://ArduinoInfo.Info

Phoenix, Arizona USA
Offline Offline
Faraday Member
**
Karma: 40
Posts: 5577
Where's the beer?
View Profile
WWW
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

ALSO --> and this may be a big hurdle, the IT department WILL NOT allow me to install software on the student machines.  Besides asking students to  bring in laptops for this endeavor, does anyone have an idea how I can overcome this obstacle and get my students the software they need for this ongoing adventure?  We have 28 student computers, each has 6GB RAM, good processors, and blah, blah, blah.

If you (or any of your students) know how to set up a USB thumbdrive to boot Linux (most modern distros make this easy) - you could do this, then install the Arduino IDE and other bits on the thumbdrive, then just boot with it - files and such generated can be saved to the thumbdrive as well. No modifications needed to the school computers.

Then again, if you do this without asking the IT department, and something goes wrong (virus or whatnot - that has nothing to do with the boot sticks) - they might just try to blame you and your "hacker" ways (IT departments in general tend to have a severe, misplaced, and generally uneducated opinion about anything "not Windows"; feels like the 1980s all over again, back when the IT department had a distrust over anything that wasn't a mainframe - ie, the rise of personal computers).

Hopefully - someone in IT will have a clue about Linux, USB booting from thumbdrives, etc - and will cut you a break (maybe they'll even help you, in the interest of educating the kids)...

Good luck! smiley
Logged

I will not respond to Arduino help PM's from random forum users; if you have such a question, start a new topic thread.

Marietta, GA, USA
Offline Offline
Newbie
*
Karma: 0
Posts: 9
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Thanks - I frequently use my ThinkPad with a 16GB Linux Mint thumb drive - works great with my computers at home.

I tried using this technique with the machines in my classroom but the BIOS skips the USB ports when booting up and - of course - the IT department won't let me change the BIOS boot order setting - it's password protected and will remain that way because they are the IT department and they have the POWWWAAAAHHHHH!!!!!

 smiley-roll

Logged

I wouldn't touch that if I was you.

Marietta, GA, USA
Offline Offline
Newbie
*
Karma: 0
Posts: 9
View Profile
 Bigger Bigger  Smaller Smaller  Reset Reset

Woo hoo!

My Uno & kit arrived today and I've been having a blast working with this thing!

Now to prepare a good presentation for my class on Wednesday!

I'm going to show them this video -->
 
Logged

I wouldn't touch that if I was you.

Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Up
Jump to: