After looking at some of my peer’s projects over the past several weeks I’ve been tempted to change the direction I have been going but alas I have stayed with objects in motion.

I like the projects students will work with and look forward to developing this unit and using it. Students will be making, improving and creating. All of this = excitement and engagement!

You may take a look at the proposal <HERE>

]]>I like VoiceThread as an alternative to Camtasia because it is not device specific and sharing is easier or so it seems.

My presentation may be found here:

https://voicethread.com/share/7247962/

While I’m comfortable with the presentation process going back to a previous project and examining it was a little frustrating. I found things I wanted to change and don’t have the time to do it.

I also had difficulties looking for alternate materials as I tend to be a bit stubborn about changing what I have already done.

]]>So… for this assignment I am building on the diverse methods of using the Makey Makey. The Makey has the ability to engage my students because of its none traditional interface to a computer. The project is a demonstration of how acceleration appears when it is graphed or shown graphically. Students are often asked to approximate this using stop watches Ā and recording the times after multiple drops past successively more distant points. While this does work I wanted my students to be able to picture this a little differently.

The final project is the result of several tried methods… Scratch is limited as to how to adapt sensors, but one that is available is . So I built a tone generator and aĀ 10 turn potentiometer with a wheel on the shaft. The car rolling down a track would pull on a line wrapped around the wheel on the potentiometer acting as a volume control. I then used theĀ Ā to track the movement of the car down the track. Well, that ended up too complex. My students didn’t understand what was going on and that took the project out of the learning arena.

The method I settled on is a series of “maker special” switches on one site of the track and the common terminal (the track) on the other. When the ball rolls along the track the Makey sees this as successive key presses. I then used code similar to the “Flappy Bird’s” tendency to rise to the rate of a key-press and fall when not receiving a key-press.

I’m happy with the final deliverable. While it is not a calibrated tool it is easy to make… the students had a good time and were anxious to work with it. I consider this one a success.

You can find a more detailed explanation in the project description below.

Acceleration is the rate of change of velocity per unit of time. With Makey-Makey and Scratch students will be able to view the acceleration of a metal ball as it rolls along the length of a conductive aluminum track. Students will created a track for tracking the rate against time using some maker special switches.

Define distance (inches, feet, miles), rate (centimeters/inches per second, mph), and time (milliseconds, seconds)

View acceleration on a graph

Experiment with potential and kinetic energy by weighing an object and calculating rate with different weights

Measure slope and the effect it has on acceleration/rate.

- Makey Makey
- Alligator Clips
- 925mm āVā shaped aluminum channel (non-anodized from Lowes or Home Depot works great)
- Steel ball ā25mm diameter
- DIY Switches – copper foil tape, masking tape, bare copper wire
- Scratch GameĀ to use or remix
- telephone wire or other long wire

Hooking up Makey Makey to Track

Use the Makey-Makey to visualize acceleration using a steel ball. Students will use thisĀ Scratch gameĀ (or create their own game) to record a drawing of the acceleration of the ball over a given distance.

Set up rail for the metal ball according to the drawing below.

Construct the switches by running a strip of masking tape along the full length of one side of the track being certain to cover the inside and outside for insulation. Placing foil tape strips along the length of the track 2cm apart for 75cm. (as seen in the picture below) All of these will be connected together so that as the ball roles along the track the Makey sees multiple key presses.

Add a strip at the beginning and the end that will be used to start and stop the program.

Attach switches to Makey Makey as follows:

Start sensor ā āSpaceā input

End sensor ā āFā key input

Interim switches ā āAā key input

Earth ā connect to the aluminum āVā rail (this acts as the common for both switches)

Convert rate from mm per millisecond to mph.

Create a word problem based on this experiment.

Use a Hot Wheels type car to recreate the experiment. (will need to change the style of track extrusion.

Add friction to the track with strips of double stick tape or adhere sections of paper to the track.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.B.5: Understand the connections between proportional relationships, lines, and linear equations.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.HSN.VM.A.3: Solve problems involving velocity and other quantities that can be represented by vectors.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.B.5: Graph proportional relationships, interpreting the unit rate as the slope of the graph. Compare two different proportional relationships represented in different ways. For example, compare a distance-time graph to a distance-time equation to determine which of two moving objects has greater speed.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.C.7: Solve linear equations in one variable.

]]>Settling on a subject direction has been a struggle as the Makey has opened up a really useful tool. The lesson below is the direction I will be going. The next lesson will look at acceleration.

Enjoy!

*How does rate change as time changes? With Makey Makey and Scratch students will measure the change in rate over your desired distance and record the correct time as the metal ball passes through two maker special switches.*

Using distance formula, students will calculate the speed of travel (rate)

Measure slope and the effect it has on acceleration/rate.

- Makey Makey
- Alligator Clips
- 925mm āVā shaped aluminum channel (non-anodized from Lowes or Home Depot works great)
- Steel ball ā25mm diameter
- DIY Switches – copper foil tape, pipe cleaners (chenille stems) Masking tape, electrical tape
- Scratch GameĀ to use or remix
- telephone wire or other long wire

Use the Makey-Makey to effectively time your car’s speed- Students will use thisĀ Scratch gameĀ (or create their own game) to record the amount of time the car travels over a given distance.

Construct the switches for the start input and stop input as shown in the drawing below. The pipe cleaners need to be taped to the track at a set distance for each set of trials.

- Start sensor ā āSā input
- End sensor ā āEā key input
- Earth ā connect to the aluminum āVā rail (this acts as the common for both switches)

Students will useĀ this chartĀ to log trials adjusting the height of the start of the rail. Students run a minimum of 10 trials at various heights and record the results.

Rate will be recorded in mm/msec.

- Convert rate from mm per millisecond to mph.
- Create a word problem based on this experiment.
- Use a Hot Wheels type car to recreate the experiment. (will need to change the style of track extrusion.
- Add friction to the track with strips of double stick tape or adhere sections of paper to the track.

Common Core

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.B.5: Understand the connections between proportional relationships, lines, and linear equations.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.HSN.VM.A.3: Solve problems involving velocity and other quantities that can be represented by vectors.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.B.5: Graph proportional relationships, interpreting the unit rate as the slope of the graph. Compare two different proportional relationships represented in different ways. For example, compare a distance-time graph to a distance-time equation to determine which of two moving objects has greater speed.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.8.EE.C.7: Solve linear equations in one variable.

]]>Since I got my Makey in from Amazon I have wanted to tinker with it… the time has come! For this project I am using an inexpensive musical recorder as the input device for the Makey and Scratch as the sound generator.

Before going into the construction and program details this is first of all a learning tool. While initially I had hoped to actually finger the recorder as it would normally be played but due to limitations in Scratch I settled for (for the time being) one finger on note. The notes chosen are a five note or pentatonic scale. All in all this is not a bad fall back as students learning about music created in pentatonic scales are common in a number of cultures. Songs like Negro Spiritual Swing Low Sweet Chariot, pop classics My Girl and Stairway to Heaven are all played on a pentatonic scale.

The input method show here is not the only input method as other instruments could be modified or new instruments made as input devices. Additionally, the instruments chosen in Scratch to create the sound can easily be changed to suit the learner.Ā For this project I used instrument 13 the wooden flute as it sounds much like a recorder.

As the Makey needs a common connection (Earth) I placed a contact on the mouthpiece then to complete the circuit there are contacts at each finger hole. Copper foil tape forms the contact and another piece holds the wire in place so contact is made thus alleviating the need to solder.

The wire used is some old CAT 5 solid core that is 24 AWG and perfect for the receptacle on the Makey board.

**Materials Used:**

- Inexpensive recorder, wooden spoon, wooden dowel rod (Donāt have to use a recorderā¦ I considered using a wooden spoon. None of this required solderingā¦)
- Copper foil tape ā find in the stained glass section of Hobby Lobby. You need to have some anyway as it is very useful for human interface. (use a piece for finger contacts and a second piece is used to hold the wire in place ā the adhesive is really strong)
- Several feet of ā22-24 awg solid (rather than stranded) wire.
- Electrical tape

**A diagram can be found here**:pseudo-recorder

**This video gives some of the what and how**:Ā

**The Scratch Code may be found here:**

**Problems encountered:**

Does not play like a regular recorder as multiple keys cannot be read at the same time.

Cannot play a chromatic scale as only six inputs work reliably with thisā¦ The arrows often revert to moving the cursor.

**Lessons Learned:**

Really do need a block that allows for concurrent multiple keypressesā¦ it might look something like this:Ā My original intent was to have a recorder playable without having to blow into the instrument. Not finding a way to test for multiple concurrent key-presses I settled for single key-press. Ā The interface is very flexible and we’ll see what comes next.

]]>*Try It Out 7-8Ā *starts with a shooter game that has a police car shooting at parrots flying across the stage. You accumulate points if you hit the red and blue birds and you end the game if you hit the green and yellow birds. I modded this by changing the theme to a military theme. I chose the E2C (the aircraft I flew in the navy) as the friendly craft and a Russian MIG-29 as the target craft going back to the Cold War days.

In addition to the military theme, additional modifications include altering the speeds of the aircraft to represent their speeds relative to each other and limiting the number of shots to 20 to make every shot count. Ā Click the screen shot below to go to the program.

*Try It Out* 7-10 is at its root a physics exercise where a projectile describes a parabolic arc as it leaves the barrel of a cannon lofts and falls to the ground. I chose to have a little fun and have the cannon launching a chicken that is aimed toward a pot. if you his the pot you get a satisfying splash if not you get splat.

Both project were fun to work with… that said, I have always liked working a project from start to finish rather that modifying someone else’s work as it is difficult for me to get an idea of the way they think and implement stuff. Click the screenshot to go to the program.

]]>Problem 6 asks for a program where the user is to enter three numbers and the program displays the largest of the three numbers. To customize this program a bit I added a number line graphic for the stage, a number routine and rather than displaying just the largest number, I sort, order and display the numbers in order smallest to largest.

In the first iteration of this project I didn’t consider the possibility of the same number being entered so I had to add an = test to the conditions to account for that possibility.

Click the image to go to the program.

Problem 10 asks for a program that determines if the measures of three sides of a triangle will yield a right triangle using the the relationship stated in the Pythagorean Theorem… Ā ** cĀ² = aĀ² + bĀ²**. After completing the minimum requirements I added a user input routine, a right triangle graphic and yes/no indicator lamps that light based on whether or not the side measures will yield a right triangle.

I enjoyed working with both of the problems this week. Both problems were challenging to build and fun to use.

]]>The two problems I chose to tackle were Chapter 5, Problems 7 & 10.

Problem 7: write a program that reads *I* (current in Amps) and *R* (resistance in Ohms) and calculates *P* (power in Watts) using the power formula *P*=*IĀ²R.Ā *The result is shown in this image. I added a visual output as well as numeric. I also made input sliders to allow the user to see the relationship between terms.

Problem 10: write a program that reads the values of three resistors in parallel and calculate the equivalent resistance. The resultant program is shown in the image below.

This program asks for each resistor value and computes the equivalent resistance R*t.Ā *Included is a graphic describing what is actually being computed.

We were to choose two problems from the book, find a solution to the problem then modify that code and possibly make it more useful.

For the first problem I chose problem 3. This is to created a procedure for converting Ā°C to Ā°F only. The procedure may be seen <HERE>.

The modifications I made were to make a calculator that converts both ways as shown below.

You make click the screenshot to see the code changes and use the converter.

Problem 5: Create a procedure to calculate the area of a circle based upon the radius. The procedure may be found <HERE>

My modifications to this were to make the calculator more useful by allowing the user to also calculate the circumference of a circle simply by selecting C for circumference or A for area. Click on the screenshot below to go to the calculator.

]]>The assignment this week is to select two problems from chapters 2 and 3. For my first problem I chose one that looked challenging – Problem 8 in chapter 2, to duplicate a specific output that is shown in the book is shown in the first image. The second image is the modified code output. For this I arranged the rainbow colors outside in the longest wavelength to shortest… in the example image yellow is before orange, and I added a rainbow colored circle to finish the middle.

The problem was fun to solve and complete. You may click the image to see the routine run on Scratch’s website.

The second problem I chose is Problem 2 in chapter 3. The code, wolf sprite with 3 costumes, and audio were provided with the problem being to synchronize the sound with the wolf transitioning through costumes so as to appear to be raising its head to howl then lowers it. My modification to this project uses a sunrise background and the wolf is crowing like a rooster.

This one was also fun to work with as the timing could be adjusted enough to achieve reasonable results.

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