- programming and coding
- solving puzzles
- thinking critically
ProsKids learn a full-range of programming skills in a fun, engrossing game that also demonstrates what they can create themselves using the skills they're learning.
ConsThough the minimal hints do force kids to figure out solutions on their own, some kids may feel defeated by the challenge and give up.
Bottom LineCargo-Bot is a simple concept that packs a challenging punch and teaches valuable programming skills.
Graphite Expert Review
Common Sense Graphite Reviewer
The straightforward challenge will engage kids, and the opportunity to make their programs better and achieve a higher score will keep them engaged.
The step-by-step logic that teaches kids to tackle a bigger problem by breaking it into steps will build better programmers and also help kids in many tasks and subject areas.
There is no hand-holding here, even in the hints. Kids are shown how to do a task, but they have to figure out how to apply the tools.
Kids playing Cargo-Bot write programs to control a robotic arm, having the robot move crates into the configuration shown on the top of the screen. Kids can work through a six-level tutorial first to get familiar with the controls and features (even the tutorial is challenging!). They can then move on to the five levels of play -- easy, medium, hard, crazy, and impossible -- with six puzzles each. The goal is not only to get the crates moved but to move them in as few programming steps as possible. A misstep crashes the crane into a wall, destroying it, but kids get unlimited chances to solve each puzzle and can replay for a higher score.Read More Read Less
The concept is simple -- direct a robotic arm to move crates to a designated spot -- but young programmers will find the implementation quite challenging. And just like in coding, a working solution may not be the optimal solution. Scores depend on how concisely the program runs. Since kids can replay each level, they are empowered to take chances and to try multiple solutions -- even when they've had a successful one -- to find the best solution. Cargo-Bot encourages the kind of innovative thinking necessary for the digital age as it introduces kids to programming skills.
Kids can learn hands-on programming skills as they drag and drop directions into place to make the robotic arm move and do what they tell it to. They'll learn the gist of programming concepts like procedural abstraction, subroutines, looping constructs, and conditional programming without having to master the lingo or detailed syntax of code. Kids will practice tackling a big problem by breaking it down into smaller problems to solve, a foundation of writing good code.Read More Read Less
Use Cargo-bot to bring STEM into the classroom. Have a programmer talk to kids about careers in computer programming as well as the importance of each step of the coding process and how the game relates. Once kids have mastered the concepts, encourage them to write their own programs using tools available on the iPad, like Codea, or online, like Scratch.Read More Read Less
See How Teachers Are Using Cargo-Bot
Field Notes Field Notes are reviews by teachers for teachers. In Field Notes, teachers rate products as well as share their hands-on experience with using the products in the classroom.
- Awesome app to get students thinking in ways they don't always do.Heather C.
Cedar Hollow School
Grand Island, NE5December 19, 2014
- Must be a reader! Look for lesson plans with screeshots on the web.Debra J.
fort lauderdale, FL5September 27, 2014
- Challenging early coding/programming skills bulding app for students beyond the introductory level.Matthew N.
Fishburn Park Elementary School
Roanoke, VA4August 3, 2014
- Simple game to engage students in programming basics3February 25, 2014