"....witnessing and discovering" is what Moog described as musicians learned to synthesize music. There wasn't an owner's manual and they experimented (for good or bad results) until they found what worked. (page 8, Getting Start with Arduino) It's also my new favorite quote to remember...it puts trial and error into another framework and makes it something where failures really aren't failures unless you give up.
Can you see the shock on my face? I bought an Arduino kit and inside was all these jumper cables. Love the idea that there won't be any sodering on this....because I am trying to see how I could use this in my class. Not sure how the school or district would feel about sodering irons...although I'd hope they'd realize if they are used properly & I give instruction, students wouldn't get burned unless they were messing around.
This is a breadboard where I use all these jumper cables. So many holes, I am wondering which ones I will be using.
Another great moment for students to follow directions. If they don't, it won't work. Immediate feedback.
Here's my first circuit board. Through my class, I've learned how to connect an external LED and write a program that makes it blink.
Aren't you impressed? I'm pretty shocked that I could do and that it worked the first time. I'll admit that then I tried moving stuff around just to see if it worked all the time not matter what.
Along the way to doing this, I learned about circuits, resistors and ground. But I definitely don't know enough because I'm not really sure what ground does. And I know that resistors protect the LED but not quite sure how. So there are more questions that doing this provoked in my learning.
I also learned that there's a different between reading a schematic diagram and a physical diagram. Schematics are what engineers use and need some specialized knowledge in order to decode and understand what's going on. A picture diagram is pretty much what it sounds like. A picture of which holes or slots you need to connect.
Resources that have helped me get to this point
I'm off to read more in my book, "Getting Started with Arduino" by Massimo Banzi. The book is easy to understand and gives a good mix of background information and help in thinking how all this goes together. Plus the pictures are easy to understand too.
I started on this journey because of Invent to Learn by Sylvia Libo Martinez and Gary Stager. They wrote a book that helped me think how it could work in classroom. So then I just had to get myself into gear and learn enough so I can write a grant to get the $$$ to buy the "stuff" we'll need and organize the time.
I also sprung to take an online class through MAKE and delivered by Udemy. It was expensive ($80 is a lot for learning financed out of your own pocket). But I figured I could ditz around all by myself and take much, much longer to learn the stuff. And probably not as well. I only have a couple more weeks to ramp up my knowledge. I also found another MAKE and Udemy course that is free for the instruction and about $75 for the materials....it's called Making for Moms. I thought it would be a good idea to understand where parents are coming from and how they are teaching each other to teach their kids. Kind of ironic that homeschoolers are giving the PD I wish I could get at school!!!! Go figure.
My big ah-ha for today.
When I started, I had no ideas on what I could build with this Arduino. Now I've read enough and learned enough that I'm beginning to get ideas. I saw a bunch of projects and, combined with what I'm learning about circuitry, I began to imagine me dreaming up my own projects. Thanks to a FB friend, James, I also got some neat ideas.
Wondering if I can build a timer....and that if I could hook that time up to a lamp. And if I can do that, then could I use an LED lightbulb in the lamp which would change colors. And if the lamp thing works out, how could I begin to use moisture sensors (I'm betting there are such things) and tie it into my drip irrigation system in the front perenniel garden.
Good to know that I can still imagine things I haven't seen before (even though they may exist).