I came across an article on Twitter that EdTech K–12 Magazine (@EdTech_K12) tweeted this week that was from July 2016 titled “3 Ways Project Bloks Can Change the Coding World.”, Google’s research labs, along with Stanford University Assistant Professor Paulo Blikstein, have created a program called Project Bloks. They have created physical interfaces to allow kids to play and collaborate to learn coding, or what they call “tangible programming.” They want to raise awareness to STEM education and allow for greater accessibility to learning programming. According to this article, Project Bloks “consist of three components: a Brain Board that provides power and sends instructions to a toy or tablet; Base Boards outfitted with sensors; and Pucks that can receive various instructions (such as turn on, move left, play).”
I went to the Project Bloks website and dug in a little deeper. According to the website, it says they have “created a modular system for tangible programming made up of electronic boards and programmable pucks — which enable you to send instructions to devices when connected together.” The brain of the system is operated by Raspberry Pi Studio. Devices can be created using these components, such as music makers, light operators, coding kits, and much more.
I believe that Project Bloks is a significant project in STEM education. Although I am not a STEM educator, I think there is a major need for such education in the United States, and I look forward to seeing future advances in this product by Google.
Photo Credit: Google Project Bloks