Introduction to Micro:Bits


Introduction to Micro:Bit

The Micro:Bit is a pocket-sized educational computer, produced by the BBC, to help develop coding and STEM skills from a young age

The aim of this workshop is to introduce basic block programming languages and how they can be used to program a BBC Micro:Bit

To discuss or book this or any of our other workshops, please contact Tally Roberts

Equipment provided

We have a set of 30 version 2 BBC Micro:Bits with power supplies and download cables available for workshops and activities.

One of our Micro:Bit V2 units with cable and battery pack

If computers are needed, we have 15 laptops available with the necessary programs installed (no internet required).

This workshop includes a PowerPoint Presentation and laminated challenge cards.

What you need to supply

A screen/projector for presenting

If using own computers, then an internet connection is required (unless software - Makecode Offline App - has been previously installed for offline use).

Headphones are advised for pupils as the programming includes sounds and 'musical' compositions.

Length of workshop

The basic Introduction to Micro:Bit session can be done in an hour. We would prefer longer if covering more complex concepts.

Age groups

The simple block programming language used in this workshop makes it perfect for younger beginners.

We recommend this to those between 8 and 13 years old.

Links to other workshops

We frequently host this session following our interactive presentation of 'What is a Robot'.

This workshop provides an introduction that can be used as the basis of a project, or as a stepping-stone to our Lego Mindstorm sessions

The Micro:Bits are also fantastic devices for a variety of STEM projects as we demonstrate in our Micro:Bit Lab workshops

The programming language used is also very similar to that used in both our Scratch and Turtle Block offerings.

Virtual delivery requirements

The Micro:Bit units themselves are not essential to this workshop as the programming software includes a simulator.

Pupils will need access to computers, preferably one between two.

A presentation screen or projector connected to Teams for delivery of the material.

Printouts of the challenges which will be sent via e-mail before the session.

Internet access for all pupils, as remote delivery involves the use of a virtual online Micro:Bit programming classroom.

Alternatively, we provide a selection of resources (worksheets/video guides/challenges) on our Micro:Bits for Educators webpage.

Variations on this workshop

This can be a stand-alone activity or part of a project/series of activities. This section is dedicated to examples of how this has been adapted to suit the needs/wants of a group.

Milk Carton Robots

Teachers at Ysgol Gymraeg Aberystwyth approached us with a year 6 project for creating milk-carton robots using Micro:Bits.

We assisted with obtaining the necessary equipment - in this case Micro:Bits, servos, LEDs and cables.

Due to Covid-19 restrictions at the time, we delivered all our sessions virtually and in this order:

The end results of one class at Ysgol Cymraeg Aberystwyth

M.A.R.S Rover Challenge

We are fortunate to have three M.A.R.S Rover units from 4Tronix.

These have been used, alongside a large wooden maze and some fake foam rocks, to create challenges for students to overcome.

We have three levels of challenge:

  1. Navigate to specified location in the maze using micro-bit remote control programs.

  2. Controlling the rover remotely and using beacon detection to identify the correct end location.

  3. Have the rover autonomously navigate the maze whilst sending data to the operator.

Feedback received

Thank you very much for helping us coding our robot. The sessions on Teams were very helpful. We had a lot of fun - Pupil

thank you for helping us with our robots. We had lots of fun making them and coding them. the sessions with you on teams were a lot of fun and I'm sure we all learnt a load - Pupil

Thank you for teaching us to make these robots and basic coding. We're so grateful for all the sessions on teams and may be helpful for the future. It was so much fun having these lessons with you - Pupil

Thank you so much for everything. The project wouldn't have been possible without you. The children very much enjoyed today's session and are looking forward to the challenge of putting everything together to finish their robots - Teacher