Posts Tagged ‘Catepillars that code’

A few months ago I was bitten by what I was told, during a diagnoses by my doctor, to be either an ant or spider bite. It was then followed up with “Did something get into your bed while you were sleeping?” This comforted me no end considering several years ago, one night, I actually shared the bed with a spider so big not only did it have a hair do like Elvis, but also I thought it was someone’s pet, or that it had escaped from a wildlife facility for giant animals, or a lab and so on.

What surprised me more than anything was the pain of the cluster of bites and how quickly they grew and expanded across my back. Just as quickly, they then reduced and slowly disappeared.

It took a month for me to be 90% healed, but that did not stop me from spraying Dettol around the bed along with anything citrus I could find (they hate citrus).

However, I am of the mindset that this particular critter got me while I was on the train doing my daily commute. I have read reports about the cleanliness of trains and what one would find if they really looked hard enough is shocking and unsurprising at the same time.

The same doctor responded to the train theory with “oh, are you going to get on the train again?” I don’t know how she thought I was going to get to and from work, but I suppose it was a valid question.

Needless to say, it is speculation as to what bit me, but if it was a spider *shudders at the thought*, that bit me, hopefully it is scared away never to return ever again.
I did demand for a while to be called Super Spider Woman, and I produced a sketch to that affect too, though it is part rendered so I will have to upload that another time.

Watch this space!

Caterpillars that code

I have been looking into coding toys for Monster recently. There are not many things we agree on nowadays, but one very beneficial thing my mother-in-law did for my husband and brother-in-law when they were children, was to put them through a touch typing course predicting that that was the way society and the world was going. It paid off, and I have the same theory about coding and programming.

It is something that has been introduced into the core curriculum in schools, apparently, and something that toy manufacturing companies seem to be getting on the band wagon to produce, so I did some research.

Here is what I found:

Learning Resources Code & Go Robot Mouse Activity Set

For ages 5 years and above, this game has 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon and it describes itself as an early introduction to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). It introduces hands-on coding skills, 10 activity cards and 30 coding cards. You can program the mouse to perform a sequence of steps to race through a variety of maze formations to get the cheese. Ummmm cheese!

Fisher-Price Code-a-pillar™ Toy

It’s Fisher Price so it has to be good right?

Well it has 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon, it develop skills like sequencing, critical thinking, reasoning, discovery, memory, problem solving and experimentation. The idea is to put the easy to connect segments of the caterpillar together and then send it on its way. Okay, so I was paraphrasing from the description above, but it looks like a sturdy educational toy for three years and above.

LEGO 17101 Boost Creative Toolbox Toy

You had me at LEGO!

This one is for the older kids (ages 7-12 years), and also has 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon. It includes over 840 LEGO pieces, plus a LEGO move hub, interactive motor and a colour and distance sensor. You can rotate Vernie the robot’s head to activate its shoulder-mounted spring-loaded shooter. You can also learn how to play a song and rock out with the Guitar4000, build the M.T.R.4 (Multi-Tooled Rover 4) and try out the different tool and customisation attachments to prepare the vehicle for an array of exciting activities.

Move Hub features Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) connectivity, two encoded motors, activation button, internal tilt sensor and a light. You do need to have a bit more equipment for this one though, a tablet running iOS 10.3 and newer/Android 5.0 or above is required and if you are in any doubt, you can visit the Lego site to check compatibility LEGO.com/DeviceCheck.

And, for those of us born in the 80s, doesn’t the robot resemble “Johnny 5”

Which one I will opt for, I am not sure (Lego, Lego, Lego….). Given the age range above and that Monster is under 18 months, I still have some time.

At the moment I see Monster being more musical than anything, but if that is their chosen area they will still need to get through the other core subjects at school, so why not try and implant it in them young, and try and make it fun along the way.
My coding knowledge is “well to do”, in the sense that I can get by at work, so if I can learn something as well – bonus!

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