The Sensor Immersion curriculum was designed with the intent to immerse K-12 students in the fundamental concepts of AI. It also provides our researchers with invaluable data collection. At the start of 2022, five teachers implemented the Sensor Immersion curriculum in their classrooms. The unit consisted of students investigating the programmable sensor system called the “DaSH” (Data Sensor Hub) to engage in computational thinking and gather data about the world around them. As the Sensor Immersion team learned more about what data is useful and what data could be improved, they worked on a refined data collection tool. Being able to identify what the students are specifically doing on the screen (e.g., code being used, any collaboration occurring) greatly improves the depth of data being collected.
After the initial roll out, the Sensor Immersion team strived to improve curricular resources aimed at supporting the teachers by developing new tutorials and increasing support for hardware and debugging. In the following months, the Sensor Immersion team worked on a new co-design extension / curriculum with the teachers. They also recruited and onboarded new teachers to work with as well as positioned current teachers to lead sub-groups. The team also worked on continuing to improve and expand learning resources for the teachers.
This past summer, the team officially onboarded 20 new teachers and welcomed them along with cohorts of returning teachers in both Denver Public Schools and Saint Vrain Valley School District. The new teachers participated in iSAT-led workshops over the summer and will soon be implementing the new Sensor Immersion curriculum with several collaborative structures, strategies and tools. The Sensor Immersion team will continue co-design with teachers with plans to build out a curriculum unit on self-driving cars and possibly one on empathy robots in the coming months. The teachers currently implementing Sensor Immersion in the classrooms are also providing feedback that can be used by other strands in the development of the AI Partner.