Many companies, especially tech giants like Google and Apple have a vast interest in making sure that majority of the next generation kids know how to code. It is best to start teaching kids how to code when they are young and in their optimal learning stage. At the Worldwide Developers Conference this month, Apple announced the Swift Playgrounds app. The app is a platform to help kids learn how to code. Now it appears that Google wants to take the idea of teaching code a bit further with its Project Bloks initiative.
Google’s Project Bloks is a collaboration between Paulo Blikstein, director of the transformative learning technologies lab at Stanford University and Google’s Creative Lab division. The idea is based on a long-held theory that kids naturally play and learn better by using their hands.
Google’s Project Bloks is an open hardware plan which allows developers to create physical blocks that can be connected together in order to help kids learn to code. The idea behind this project is that if you are teaching a kid to code with the traditional screen and keyboard, it limits the experience and learning to code via this open hardware plan can be more fun and innovative for children than the traditional approach. By using physical blocks instead of typing, kids get the opportunity to work together collaboratively in a group to solve a problem and learn to code at the same time.
That’s not all, what is really interesting is that by using physical blocks kids who can;t even read yet can also learn how to code. Project Bloks will also help teach code to those with dyslexia who would never be able to code normally.
The hardware plan is made up of three components: the Brain Board, Base Boards, and Pucks. The Pucks attach to Base Boards. They can be programmed with different instructions. Base Boards can then be connected to one another in various ways. Then, the whole setup connects to the Brain Board which houses the main processing unit. The Brain Bord receives and processes the instructions before communicating them to a connected device.