Are you an educator who's feeling lost when it comes to integrating coding into the curriculum? We've got the solution for you!
We know teachers are always looking for creative and educational ways to engage students in coding and STEM activities. Here at InkSmith, we've developed a new learning resource for students in grades 6 to 9 that's all about space, coding, and robotics!
Mission on the Moon is the perfect solution whether you're an educator looking to deliver space-themed coding and robotics activities in the classroom, or you want to have students complete the modules self-guided and asynchronously.
Mission on the Moon is also perfect for every classroom, regardless of hardware capabilities. Every module has been adapted so that the coding activities can be completed virtually—all you need is a laptop!
Two delivery methods: Student-guided or Educator-guided
Mission on the Moon is designed to be delivered either by an educator in the classroom or individual students in self-guided study.
Students have the freedom to enroll themselves in the bundle and complete the different modules. Each module is designed to guide students through a space-related STEM lesson and then have them complete a coding project to achieve their 'mission on the moon'.
How to use Mission on the Moon educator resources
The recently updated Science and Technology curriculum in Ontario places a greater emphasis on STEM subjects to prepare students for the jobs of tomorrow. Students are expected to learn coding beginning as early as Grade 1, which is great for students, but can feel daunting for teachers new to STEM curriculum.
To help educators in Ontario and all over Canada increase their confidence in delivering STEM lesson plans, InkSmith has included a comprehensive Educator Guide for Mission on the Moon. The Educator Guide includes:
- A brief overview of the content covered in each module,
- Tips, tricks, and troubleshooting help for educators,
- Curriculum connections for the new Science and Technology expectations in Ontario,
- Student presentation slide decks for classroom delivery.
How to get started with your class
The Mission on the Moon bundle of online coding and robotics courses is completely free, thanks to the financial support of the Canadian Space Agency.
To enroll your class, head over to the Mission on the Moon page on Teachable and create a free Teachable account, or login if you have an existing account. Teachable is an LMS platform where users can share their knowledge by creating online courses.
Once you have your account set up, select the first course called “Mission on the Moon: Introduction”. This lesson is designed to get teachers quickly up to speed on the software and resources needed to complete the courses and activities.
Mission on the Moon is provided completely free to students and educators across Canada. In exchange for accessing this content for free, we kindly ask that educator’s register the delivery of this material in the classroom by completing a short, anonymous survey.
Mission on the Moon module formats
The Mission on the Moon bundle of courses includes six modules that each consist of two parts: 'Mission Brief' and 'Your Mission'.
In the 'Mission Brief', students will learn about a specific space topic related to Canada’s mission to send a Lunar Rover to the Moon. Everything learned comes from in-depth research from reliable sources, including the Canadian Space Agency, and features real-life Canadian astronauts and images from space.
In 'Your Mission', students will be challenged to complete a “mission” related to the topic they learned about in the 'Mission Brief'. Each mission is an assignment that requires students to code a program for their Lunar Rover to perform a specific task.
Virtual Coding vs. Physical Hardware
Each module comes in two versions: a course designed for virtual coding, and a course designed to be used with physical robotics hardware.
Classes that have access to a k8 robot and micro:bit can choose the courses labelled “Physical Hardware”. These courses will have a “mission” for students to complete in real-life using robotics hardware. With k8 acting as the lunar rover, students will code a program with Microsoft MakeCode, download it onto the micro:bit, and watch the results of their “mission”.
If your class doesn’t have access to either of those pieces of robotics hardware select the courses labelled “Virtual Coding”. These “missions” can be completed online in a virtual coding environment that requires no hardware. Students will use online software platforms like Scratch and TinkerCAD to simulate the lunar rover mission.
The main goal of this course bundle is to create accessible and approachable coding and robotics programming for students, regardless of experience or access to hardware.
Mission on the Moon coding activities
Here are a few examples of “missions” students will be challenged to complete:
|Virtual Coding Missions||Physical Hardware Missions|