Boston College Professor
John Gallaugher ( Twitter: @gallaugher) has been teaching a core course “Digital Technologies: Strategy & Use” for (mostly) freshmen business students. It combines the study of how technology influences competition with some hands-on skill (usually model building in Excel). He writes:
This year I wanted to give students an experience that combined coding with some basic engineering. The low-cost
Circuit Playground Express from Adafruit Industries is ideal. The firm’s founder and lead engineer, Limor “Ladyada” Fried, is also a great role model for students interested in entrepreneurship.
Professor Gallaugher goes into detail on using the
Adafruit Circuit Playground Express board programmed with Microsoft MakeCode, an easy to use block language for programming electronics. He has prepared a Google Drive for faculty interested in adapting the exercises for their own courses.
see this Youtube playlist for tutorials Gallaugher has created for teaching the course. See this Medium article which goes into detail about the students’ experiences and their creative projects. The accompanying video is below. (ed note: The Baby Groot project in the video is a favorite). VIDEO
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the
drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
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