Last week, the first grade girls came up to the Riveter Lab to learn with littleBits, kits consisting of electronic building blocks that snap together with magnets to create instant circuits. They started with the blue bits (power), a power supply (battery), and a simple LED light. After a little investigation, the girls were able to connect all of the pieces to light up the light. We then added a few more green bits (output) for the girls to explore. In no time, we saw LEDs, buzzers, and motors lighting up, making sounds, and moving at every table. Finally, we added the pink bits (input) to send messages to the green bits. By using the buttons and dimmers, the girls were able to control the intensity of the lights and volume of the buzzers.
More important than the creation of the circuits, the girls were implementing their design thinking skills. They examined the pieces, explored the different ways the pieces fit together, designed their circuits, tested their results, and then made modifications as needed. They worked together with their partners to troubleshoot and problem solve, building on their communication skills. We can’t wait to see what else the first graders create!
post written by C. Windell