8-10 yrs old
11-13 yrs old
14-18 yrs old
In the lesson, students will explore the challenges faced colonising other worlds.
May 20, 2020
Microsoft Seeding Programme
Part of the Tablet Academy "Seeding Programme" in partnership with Microsoft.
Sets the scene and introduces students to Swarm Robotics and coding in Minecraft
Student help guide with code samples
Mission to Mars World File
In the lesson, students will explore the challenges faced colonising other worlds. Students will learn about swarm robotics and investigate the concept of using materials found in a planet’s regolith to 3D print structures. Using the Code Connections tool in Minecraft, the students will program a swarm of robots (called agents) to harvest raw materials from the Martian surface and use this to build habitation and pressurised living environments on Mars.
Starter (10 mins)
To begin the lesson, instruct students to load Minecraft Education Edition and launch the ‘hour of code’ lesson (AI for good) from the start menu. This will introduce students to coding in Minecraft using blocks.
Challenge 1 Mission to Mars (30 mins)
Start by loading the Mission to Mars PowerPoint presentation. The presentation is designed to introduce the students to swarm robotics and 3D printing structures using materials mined from a planets regolith.
Split the class into small groups and ask them to load Minecraft Education Edition on their devices and open the Mission to Mars map. Using the ‘Mission to Mars Worksheet’, challenge students to program their robots (Agent) to collect resources (blocks of sand) from the Martian surface and use this to build habitation and pressurised living environments.
Plenary (10 mins)
In the final part of the lesson, ask a member from each team to share what they have built in Minecraft.
Use questioning to stimulate discussion, for example: ‘What problems did they face when coding their structures in Minecraft?’ and ‘What are the challenges of colonising other planets in this way?’ etc.
Students can be assessed on the following criteria:
• Were the students able to write an algorithm for coding a simple structure in Minecraft using the Agent?
• Were the students able to explain how their code works?
• Were the students able to explain the challenges faced with using swarm robotics and 3D printing to colonise other planets?
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