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Program Systems

Crumble Nightlights

Computer program systems are taught towards the end of Key Stage 2. They provide an opportunity for children to bring together their knowledge of materials, structures, mechanical and electrical systems to create products that are controlled by a programmed microcontroller. In the Crumble Nightlight project, children design and make a nightlight partly made from recycled plastic. As part of the product they incorporate a lighting system containing a light sensor and a microcontroller. Using block coding language they program the nightlight to switch on as the light intensity fades.

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In this unit of work children design and make a controllable robot buggy to take part in the class RoboWars. They learn how electric vehicles work and the different components that make up an electric vehicle. They use this knowledge when constructing their own buggy using their knowledge of structures and mechanical systems. Adding different Crumble components allows them to create a controllable buggy. Using recycled plastic and carboard engineering skills they design and make an authentic robot buggy capable of random movements that they enter into the RoboWars competition.

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Fairground Ride.png

Fairground Ride

When designing and making fairground rides in Upper Key Stage 2 children have the opportunity to study how simple pulley systems (a belt and drive mechanism) can be incorporated in to product to create a toy model. Children make a simple pulley system and then apply this learnt knowledge to create a model of a fairground ride. This unit can be extended to incorporate motors and a microcontroller so that children understand how products can be controlled using program systems.

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Soft Toy Tamagotchi

In Upper Key Stage 2 children combine their knowledge of working with textiles and computer programming to create a Soft Toy Tamagotchi. Based on the popular electronic pet from the 1990s children design and make a soft toy that includes a programmable BBC Microbit. They program the toy to interact with the user and to perform different actions when the buttons of the Microbit are pushed. 

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