Activity Introduction

Quick summary: This is a STEAM lesson, which adds the Arts to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). To find out more about STEAM and STEM click here. In this lesson, students refine their ideas for a school community robotics event based on feedback from end-users and stakeholders. Students then consider other organisational elements to be completed prior to the implementation of their projects and plan to complete these tasks.

This is the final lesson of a Design Thinking unit focusing on robotics.

This STEAM lesson demonstrates how science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics are interrelated. The lesson requires students to draw on and develop skills from all areas to complete their project. By the end of this lesson, your students will be prepared to conduct their robotics community event at a later date.

Learning intentions:

  • Students develop their ideas for robotics activities based on peer and user-feedback.
  • Students prepare for implementation of their robotics project.

21st century skills: 

CommunicatingCommunity EngagementCreative ThinkingCritical ThinkingDigital LiteracyEntrepreneurshipProblem FindingProblem SolvingSocial SkillsTeam Work


Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions: 

Year 5 and 6 Digital Technologies

  • Examine the main components of common digital systems and how they may connect together to form networks to transmit data (ACTDIK014)
  • Design, modify and follow simple algorithms involving sequences of steps, branching, and iteration (repetition) (ACTDIP019)
  • Implement digital solutions as simple visual programs involving branching, iteration (repetition), and user input (ACTDIP020)

Year 5 Mathematics

  • Solve problems involving multiplication of large numbers by one- or two-digit numbers using efficient mental, written strategies and appropriate digital technologies (ACMNA100)
  • Describe, continue and create patterns with fractions, decimals and whole numbers resulting from addition and subtraction (ACMNA107)
  • Choose appropriate units of measurement for length, area, volume, capacity and mass (ACMMG108)
  • Calculate perimeter and area of rectangles using familiar metric units (ACMMG109)
    Use a grid reference system to describe locations. Describe routes using landmarks and directional language (ACMMG113)
  • Estimate, measure and compare angles using degrees. Construct angles using a protractor (ACMMG112)

Year 6 Mathematics

  • Investigate everyday situations that use integers. Locate and represent these numbers on a number line (ACMNA124)
  • Solve problems involving addition and subtraction of fractions with the same or related denominators (ACMNA126)
  • Solve problems involving the comparison of lengths and areas using appropriate units (ACMMG137)
  • Interpret and use timetables (ACMMG139)

Year 5 English

  • Understand that patterns of language interaction vary across social contexts and types of texts and that they help to signal social roles and relationships (ACELA1501)
  • Understand how to move beyond making bare assertions and take account of differing perspectives and points of view (ACELA1502)
  • Clarify understanding of content as it unfolds in formal and informal situations, connecting ideas to students’ own experiences and present and justify a point of view (ACELY1699)
  • Use interaction skills, for example paraphrasing, questioning and interpreting non-verbal cues and choose vocabulary and vocal effects appropriate for different audiences and purposes (ACELY1796)
  • Plan, rehearse and deliver presentations for defined audiences and purposes incorporating accurate and sequenced content and multimodal elements (ACELY1700)
  • Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive print and multimodal texts, choosing text structures, language features, images and sound appropriate to purpose and audience (ACELY1704)
  • Use a range of software including word processing programs with fluency to construct, edit and publish written text, and select, edit and place visual, print and audio elements (ACELY1707)

Year 6 English

  • Understand that strategies for interaction become more complex and demanding as levels of formality and social distance increase (ACELA1516)
  • Participate in and contribute to discussions, clarifying and interrogating ideas, developing and supporting arguments, sharing and evaluating information, experiences and opinions (ACELY1709)
  • Use interaction skills, varying conventions of spoken interactions such as voice volume, tone, pitch and pace, according to group size, formality of interaction and needs and expertise of the audience (ACELY1816)
  • Plan, rehearse and deliver presentations, selecting and sequencing appropriate content and multimodal elements for defined audiences and purposes, making appropriate choices for modality and emphasis (ACELY1710)
  • Use a range of software, including word processing programs, learning new functions as required to create texts (ACELY1717)

Syllabus outcomes: MA3‑1WM, MA3‑2WM, MA3‑3WM, MA3‑6NA, MA3‑8NA, MA3-9MG, MA3-10MG, MA3-11MG, MA3-12MG, MA3-16MG, MA3-17MG, EN3-1A, EN3-2A, EN3-8D.

General capabilities: Literacy, Numeracy, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Capability, Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Capability.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability.

Relevant parts of Year 5 and 6 Digital Technologies Achievement Standards: Students explain how the features of technologies influence design decisions and how digital systems are connected to form networks. Students describe a range of needs, opportunities or problems and define them in terms of functional requirements. They collect and validate data from a range of sources to assist in making judgements. Students generate and record design ideas for specified audiences using appropriate technical terms, and graphical and non-graphical representation techniques including algorithms. They plan, design, test, modify and create digital solutions that meet intended purposes including user interfaces and a visual program.

Relevant parts of Year 5 Mathematics Achievement Standards: Students solve simple problems involving the four operations using a rangeof strategies. They check the reasonableness of answers using estimation and rounding. Students identify and describe factors and multiples. They identify and explain strategies for finding unknown quantities in number sentences involving the four operations. Students continue patterns by adding and subtracting fractions and decimals. They use appropriate units of measurement for length, area, volume, capacity and mass, and calculate perimeter and area of rectangles. Students use a grid reference system to locate landmarks. They measure and construct different angles.

Relevant parts of Year 6 Mathematics Achievement Standards: Students solve problems involving all four operations with whole numbers. They solve problems involving the addition and subtraction of related fractions. Students connect decimal representations to the metric system and choose appropriate units of measurement to perform a calculation. They solve problems involving length and area. Students describe combinations of transformations. They solve problems using the properties of angles.

Relevant parts of Year 5 English Achievement Standards: Students listen and ask questions to clarify content. They make presentations which include multimodal elements for defined purposes. They contribute actively to class and group discussions, taking into account other perspectives. They select specific vocabulary and use accurate spelling and punctuation. They edit their work for cohesive structure and meaning.

Relevant parts of Year 6 English Achievement Standards: Students understand how the use of text structures can achieve particular effects. They listen to discussions, clarifying content and challenging others’ ideas. They make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, using a variety of strategies for effect. They use accurate spelling and punctuation for clarity and make and explain editorial choices based on criteria.

Topic: STEAM.

Unit of workLearning Robotics – Years 5 & 6

Time required: 120 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – some students may require support to sort and analyse their findings.

Resources required: Device capable of displaying video to class. Student Worksheet (one copy per students). Sphero SPRK+ (or alternative programmable robot), minimum one per 3 students. Device capable of running Sphero Edu App, e.g. iPad, iPod Touch (or required software for your robot), one for each robot. A variety of reusable construction materials and additional equipment to create contexts/challenges for robots (e.g. Duplo, blocks, rulers, tennis balls, small hoops, etc.). Enough copies of the Student Progress Resource to list all students or groups in the class.


Keywords: prototype, ideate, end-user, feedback, develop, planning, organisation, robotics, robot, Sphero, SPRK+, digital technology, STEAM, STEM.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.


Teacher Worksheet

Teacher Preparation

Learning intentions:

  • Students develop their ideas for robotics activities based on peer and user-feedback.
  • Students prepare for implementation of their robotics project.

Success criteria: Students can…

  • ... create prototypes to share with others.
  • ... adapt their prototypes based on feedback.
  • ... organise all resources required for project implementation.
  • ... delegate tasks amongst group members.
  • ... take responsibility for completing tasks assigned to them.

Teacher content information:


Why should you teach robotics, you ask?
In his article Five reasons to teach robotics in schools, Leon Sterling suggests reasons to be:

  • Children find it fun.
  • It is an effective way to introduce programming.
  • Skills developed are useful to future employment.
  • It suits children with a range of abilities.
  • It demystifies complex technology.

These factors are also reiterated by the Digital Technologies Hub, developed to support Australia’s

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Student Worksheet

Get ready to run your robotics activity!

1. To begin this lesson, work in your group to bring together the feedback you have collected in the table below:

End-User Feedback

Feedback we received from the end-user...

Changes we will make to the prototype...

2. The following process will help your group plan and advertise your activity. Work through these steps with your group at your own pace. Your teachers will be coming around regularly to provide feedback.

Organising Resources

Resources required

Where to get them Who is getting them When they are needed by

Things to be Made/Created

Who is making them

How they are making them When they need to be completed by


School Community Members to Advertise to

How to advertise to them Resources required Responsible person
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