Fab Academy is a distributed educational model directed by Neil Gershenfeld from MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms. Students view and participate in global lectures broadcasted every week and on February 1st Massimo Banzi was invited to give a lecture to an audience of students from all over the world. You can watch the 50-minute recorded lesson in the video below:
Photosynthesis is an interactive installation for primary school children created, designed and developed by Moritz von Burkersroda and exhibited at P3 Ambika, University of Westminster.
It’s a learning experience to understand the abstract process of photosynthesis in a hands-on way. Thanks to a physical interaction kids can easily understand what plants convert light into chemical energy to fuel their activities.
The installation uses an Arduino to measure data from a photoresistor and a hacked Wii-remote to connect the objects with the video feedback on the screen triggered by a Processing sketch. On the page of the project you can download a Design Research Document about Contextual study theory to understand the relationship between interactivity, learning and educational institutions, like museums.
Over the Christmas holidays we received an email from Julien Marin. He wanted to tell us about the Malinux Télé project, which he founded a year ago in Mali in West Africa, and to reach out for concrete help from the Raspberry Pi community.
As a volunteer for a Malian children’s charity, Julien had observed a problem that we’ve seen in various guises elsewhere: a computer is seen as far too precious to let children use it, even if it has been donated, and this is especially true for organisations taking care of disadvantaged children. Televisions, however, are much more common devices, and most childcare settings in Mali have a TV that children can use. This means that Raspberry Pi offers a way to bring educational software where isn’t possible to bring conventional computers.
Malinux Télé devices include a Raspberry Pi with the Malinux Télé operating system, a specially designed fork of Raspbian that bundles educational software, offline copies of resources such as Vikidia (a wikipedia-like encyclopedia for children), and activities allowing children to practice reading in both French (Mali’s official language) and Bambara (the children’s native language). It’s configured to display correctly on an analogue TV connected via the Raspberry Pi’s composite video port, as well as to make using the device as simple as possible for people who haven’t had much practice using computers or controlling a mouse. The Pi and SD card are enclosed in a wooden case made by artisans in Mali, designed to stop SD cards from being too easily removed and ending up in children’s mobile phones! 75% of the population of Mali have no mains electricity connection, and this set-up can be powered by alternative means such as solar panels.
So far, Malinux Télé has donated devices to 40 local non-profit organisations carrying out activities with disadvantaged Malian children, and they intend to continue doing so. Julien suggests that, since the arrival of Raspberry Pi 2, there must be some older Raspberry Pi 1 Models B and B+ “sleeping in some closets”:
These are just perfect for the Malinux Télé project: suitable cables can be found in the local market. We decided to ask people for donation of unused Pis so they can have a second life making the malian children happy with the Malinux Télé project.
We were really glad that Julien got in touch to let us know about Malinux Télé: it’s an excellent, simple idea that makes the most of the work and resources of existing local organisations, and we hope that you’ll like the fact that there’s an easy, concrete thing you can do if you’d like to help. If you have an old Raspberry Pi that’s sitting around gathering dust, consider giving it a new lease of life in Mali.
Teachers! Become the envy of your maker friends and colleagues by signing up to Picademy@Google Manchester, our free, two-day, professional development experience for professional educators. We will give you the tools and confidence to create inspiring physical computing projects and lessons using the Raspberry Pi.
Thanks to our partnership with Google, the event is free to attend, with lunch included both days, as well as a group dinner on day one. Accommodation and travel is not covered, and will need to be arranged by you or your workplace.
Location: Manchester Central Library
- 15/16 February 2016
- 01/02 March 2016
- 14/15 March 2016
- 21/22 March 2016
Here’s some video we shot at Picademy Leeds.
This is “Picademy at Google: Leeds” by raspberrypi on Vimeo, the home for high quality videos and the people who love them.
On day one, expect to get stuck in to a range of workshops that introduce you to physical computing by using the General Purpose Input Output (GPIO) pins to control simple electronic components and motors. Explore the camera module attachment, make music with Sonic Pi and terraform the world of Minecraft using the Python programming language.
However, the real fun begins on day two. It’s now up to you to use your newly learned skills to build your own projects. These typically range from the delightful to the ‘dear-lord-you-made-WHAT-now?’ sort of category. Previous #winning projects have included: killer robots, a ‘weeping angel’ simulator, a mobile phone-controlled car, Christmas jumpers with flashing LEDs, treasure hunts in Minecraft, a speed detector that cheers when you’re running fast enough, and many more. We like our educators to go crazy and flex their creativity muscle. By taking ownership of a project, you reinforce the skills you learned on day one while acquiring new ones such as decomposing problems, testing and debugging, and building resilience.
As a recent Picademy graduate and general Raspberry Pi beginner, I was surprised at how much I picked up on the first day and was able to use in a real project for the final show and tell. Also, you really don’t need to worry about not getting understanding something or making mistakes – everyone is super supportive and will happily go out of their way to help you out. In fact, it’s a really important lesson to learn and pass on: that failing to do something perfectly first time is something to be embraced rather than be afraid of.
By the end of the two days, you leave as a Raspberry Pi Certified Educator, ready to go on and spread your new-found enthusiasm to other educators and, of course, to a whole generation of children. All graduates also get access to post-Picademy support in the form of our exclusive Certified Educator community forums.
To apply for this event, visit our Picademy Manchester application page.
The post Join us at Picademy @ Google Manchester and become a Certified Educator appeared first on Raspberry Pi.
The Interaction Awards published the shortlisted projects for 2016 and up to five finalists in each category will be announced during the event on Friday evening, March 4, 2016. In the Expressing category, showcasing projects enabling self expression and/or creativity there is a project called Step representing an innovative and engaging way of approaching music production for children between 6 and 100 years old.
Step runs on an Arduino and has been created by Federico Lameri, Sandro Pianetti at the Master of Advanced Studies in Interaction Design in Lugano under the supervision of Massimo Banzi and Giorgio Olivero of Todo.
To prototype the user experience we’ve used an Arduino Leonardo connected to a processing sketch that handle the recording and playback features. Using a Mux Shield 2 we managed connecting 25 IR sensors, 16 LEDs, 1 knob and a button to a single Arduino board. We needed a quick and effective way to test the experience and by using Arduino we managed to design and build the whole product in three weeks.
Most of the music toys on the market are trying to fake the sounds and the experience of real instruments. Step has a different approach as it’s designed to give children the opportunity to create real loops and beats using whatever sounds they like from objects of everyday life.
Players can record any sounds and match them with coloured tags, and then create melodies, loops and and beats by placing tags on the track and by adjusting the tempo!
Check the video below to see it in action:
We’re very excited to announce that starting today Arduino 101* (USA only) and Genuino 101 (Outside USA) made in collaboration with Intel, are available for purchase exclusively on the Arduino Stores at the price of $30/€28,65 (+ tax).
Arduino 101 and Genuino 101 are the ideal successor of the Uno featuring a 32-bit Intel® Quark™ microcontroller for minimal power consumption, 384 kB of flash memory, 80 kB of SRAM (24 kB available for sketches), an integrated DSP sensor hub, Bluetooth Low Energy radio, and 6-axis combo sensor with accelerometer and gyroscope. You’ll be able to create projects with great features like recognising gestures and controlling your phone over Bluetooth connectivity — all without needing additional hardware.
We presented it and gave a preview during Maker Faire Rome 2015: watch Massimo Banzi and Josh Walden Senior Vice President of Intel Corporation introducing the board at the Faire in the video below.
We prepared some documentation so you can learn all the details about the new board:
And 3 tutorials focused on the new features of Arduino and Genuino 101:
- Try out the integrated accelerometer and gyro and discover sensor fusion
- Count your steps using the advanced features of 101’s accelerometer
- Monitor your heart rate using the Bluetooth Low Energy capabilities
Like all our boards, Arduino 101 & Genuino 101 are supported by Arduino IDE starting with version 1.6.7, that we have just released. Check out the download page. IDE version 1.6.7 contains a revamped, faster and more compliant version of Arduino-builder (all the fixes are reported here), a lot of fixes to Board Manager and the serial plotter is now able to plot multiple signals at once.
*Please note: Arduino 101 boards sold in USA are in pre-sell, we’ll ship them from December 28th onward.