Book Review: Crumble Creations by Phil Bagge

primary computing crumble
Two Phils are better than one…

I had the pleasure of receiving Phil Bagge’s new book: Crumble Creations this week and it is goooooood!

Having recently purchased Redfern Electronic’s Crumble micro controllers for my current school and introduced physical computing, I can totally recommend this book as the perfect starting place. It’s packed with detailed explanation and introduction to the crumble and its many components (old and new editions), plus a wealth of photocopiable lesson plans, worksheets, templates as well as photographs and wiring diagrams.

Phil captures pupils’ imagination through the book’s projects by invoking exploration and investigation; giving just enough away to scaffold their learning, whilst challenging pupils to find creative ways to problem solve. Examples of code (including the notorious servo block issues!) are included for teachers. He does not provide code for children to simply copy, but instead reveals on challenge cards/ worksheets parts of code for pupils to complete, building on their existing coding knowledge.

One of Phil’s strengths is his pseudo code ideas; encouraging learning through role play to consolidate further the importance of computational thinking. There are some great photocopiable pages of pseudo code ideas; one of the many resources in this book that teachers can literally pick up and run with straight away.

I wholeheartedly recommend this book to any primary teacher, even if you don’t yet have the equipment in school yet!

Anyone for crumble?

FE267EBD-8ADC-42D6-B8EC-52C0037B611B.jpegI’m teaching my year 6 class physical computing with a brand new set of crumble micro controller (Redfern electronics).

We’ve also bought for each crumble set: 2 motors, 1 servo, 2 LEDs, a switch and a distance sensor. The class are currently in the process of playing, exploring and planning (I like to sometimes try all these processes at once), with the aim of creating a moving model using each component to bring it to life.

We came across an interesting problem with the coding to control the servos however; you can’t use a servo control block on its own. It simply won’t do anything. You have to add a piece of code directly after it, for example a ‘wait’, for it to function. I’ve let Redfern know they need to add this piece of vital information to their help guide!

More on these projects later….

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