New craft sheets: Learning programming with interactive paper figures
The new starter set. Credits: CLT
The idea is based on a computer science research project at Saarland University and is already supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy through an EXIST start-up grant. By tinkering with cardboard animals equipped with sensors that can be programmed via a mini-computer, children can be introduced to the world of programming lines and arithmetic instructions at an early age. CLT Creative Learning Technologies GmbH now offers a new starter set in its own online shop.
The set contains three different motifs. In addition to a fox called Finn and a moose named Raya, each starter set comes with a further sheet that children can design themselves. The paper folding sheets are printed with special sensors and conductive tracks. Combined with the well-known Calliope mini-computer, the cardboard figures can be brought to life. Each set comes with two tasks that children from the age of seven can use to learn programming step by step. Finn the fox accompanies the children as a comic figure in an age-appropriate manual. The starter sets cost between €29.95 and 59.95 depending on the equipment.
The six-member team calls the craft sheets Foldio. This is because the technology for this is based on the “Fold-IO” research project, which was formerly developed by Simon Olberding as part of his doctoral thesis at the “Human-Computer Interaction” chair of Professor Jürgen Steimle. The technology is now protected by a patent. The first handicraft prototypes were based on projects in which the researchers printed sensors and simple screens using conductive ink. The highlight of Fold-IO, however, was and is the additional software. It makes the foldable, interactive 3D objects possible in the first place. It enables the designer to create the respective object on the screen in 3D together with the desired input and output sensors with their respective functionality. The program then automatically calculates the layout of the craft sheet to be printed with electronics.
Questions can be directed to:
CLT Creative Learning Technologies GmbH
Saarland Informatics Campus A1.1
phone: 0681 302 71288
Competence Center Computer Science Saarland
Saarland Informatics Campus E1.7
Die Öffentlichkeitsarbeit am Saarland Informatics Campus wird unterstützt durch das Kompetenzzentrum Informatik Saarland, gefördert aus Mitteln des Europäischen Fonds für regionale Entwicklung (EFRE) und Mitteln der Staatskanzlei Saarland.