22 Oct 2020
T4L innovator Joachim Cohen has gone mad for the new micro:bit – we chat with him about the new version.
At first glance Joachim, what’s exciting about the new micro:bit?
There are cool new things like the speaker addition, touch sensors and a microphone. The new micro:bit is also compatible with all the projects you’ve created.
What platform does it work on?
The new micro:bit works across all platforms - you can program directly in the browser.
How do teachers and schools get their hands on it?
It’s too new for EdBuy but watch this space! You can find the existing one under ‘micro:bit’.
Cost to schools?
The word on the street is that it will be similar in price to the existing model which sits at around the $30 mark per micro:bit.
Tell us more about the new features.
Speaker – program it to play music and add it to your music classes! This has added some great new functionality as there is no need to connect an external speaker or headphones.
Touch sensor and microphone - with the addition of extra inputs including a touch sensor and microphone, the micro:bit can respond to even more changes in the environment. Create a burglar alarm or room alarm (sorry, teachers).
Compatibility - the new micro:bit works with all the projects you have already created and all the programs like MakeCode you know and love. This means, all the learning challenges in the stem.T4L learning library and the new micro:bit should be compatible.
Why is it a great teaching tool?
It’s simple, reliable and effective, with plenty of online support resources on platforms including MakeCode and more! I like to call it a complete electronic prototyping solution, and it works across KLAs.
What skills do students develop using micro:bit?
Creativity: students can create digital systems
Computational thinking: students can develop algorithms to make the micro:bit act as they want!
Cross curricular: why not use it to track fitness or collect weather data?
Real-world application: check out Do your Bit challenge linked to the UN’s sustainable development goals of sustainability, health and wellbeing
I love micro:bit because...
It’s a low entry floor to coding with a high ceiling of possibilities.
Want to learn more?
Find out the latest at the micro:bit site
Get programming virtually – no micro:bit required with MakeCode
Get lesson plans at the STEM.T4L Learning Library
Get started with micro:bit – read more in magazine.T4L