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英語で電気工作教室 (9)


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木, 29 9月 2022 22:31

英語で電気工作教室 Week 2

A quick report on week two of our English and Electronics (英語で電気工作教室):

We had a quick review of the content covered in week one especially the names of the various components (switch, light, wire, battery etc) and the idea of an electrical circuit needing everything to be connected in orde for it work. This was helped by completing a worksheet to identify the valid circuits.



We then looked more closely at LEDs, I had a selection of red, green, blue, orange, yellow and pink LEDs for us to use. But what do LEDs need to keep them happy?  That's right, a resistor. So we looked a various resistors and using a color code chart were able to read the values. For example red, green, brown bands indicate it's a 250Ω resisitor, brown, black, brown band equal a 100Ω rsistor and brown, black, black bands will indicate a 10Ω resistor. We used a magnifying glass to help see the bands!


We then moved on creating a bank of buttons to control the various colour LEDs. For this we used an electrical breadboard, so firstly we looked at how the breadboard is wired before using nippers to trim the buttons, LEDs and the all important resistors before placing them in the breadboard to create valid circuits.

Once we had checked that the various LEDs were inserted the right way round, and all the circuits were working we proceeded to push the buttons to light up the LEDs. We either called out colors and the children had to press theright button or we made up modified color songs and they had to follow along!


We finished by discussing what we had learned today, and packing the completed circuits in a bag so the children could take them home and play. Next week we will be attempting to automate those buttons by connecting everything to an Arduino.

You can also watch a short video clip of the LEDs lighting up as a student pushes the buttons following my commands (more or less...)







月, 26 9月 2022 23:02

At the Park

  Here is the video for the At the Park book we are currently using in our Saturday Kinder class. As is usual with the Potato Pals series it's one of those catchy tunes that soon has the children up and dancing along!

 As a side note, this year we discovered if you turn the 'ride on the see-saw' page upside down Chip appears to be at risk of plummeting into the abyss


月, 26 9月 2022 21:05

英語で電気工作教室 Week 1

A brief report on week one of our English and Electronics (英語で電気工作教室) class:

We started with introductions and a safety talk then we looked at various components we will use in the course, for example switches, lights, LEDs, motors, batteries, wire etc. After trying to remember the names of these components in English we completed a worksheet about the symbols used to identify these parts in a circuit diagram.

We then looked at how electricity flows around a circuit. We identified the positive and negative ends of different batteries and measured their voltages using a multimeter---good chance to practice numbers. The idea of a complete circuit was a little difficult to grasp...all the components must be connected to each other to form a circle...with no gaps!

To reinforce the idea of a complete circuit we used the Snap Circuits board to quickly create a circuit using a battery and a light. We then expanded this to include a motor, push switch, on-off switch and an LED.

We then finished the lesson reviewing what we had learned so far, and looking forward to week two!


月, 26 9月 2022 17:32

What's this Spider Called?

This spider is a relatively common sight in englishpool, and also in my home, but what is it called?

Well up to last week I had no idea of what kind of spider it was but then one of our elementary students brought one into class with him. Normally this would have the effect of the other students jumping around and making a commotion but not in this class! In fact one of the girls proceeded to tell us all about this kind of spider:

It's Japanese name is haetorigumo(ハエトリグモ) known in English as a 'Jumping Spider'.

As the name suggests it can jump. The surprising thing is that it jumps in order to catch its prey, literally jumping on the potential meal and catching it. Because of this method of catching prey it doesn't need to make a trap so you never see spider webs.

A big thank you to the student for enlightening us all, and needless to say we let the spider go! Especially as they live off a diet of flies, mosquitoes, cockroaches, stink bugs, and ants so not only are they clean but they also provid a vital service!



In this video Paul shares with you an amazing sound effect one of his students created while they were looking at the five senses (sight, touch, smell, hearing and taste.)

Did you know that by popping the bubbles in a sheet of bubblewrap you can create a realistic crackling campfire sound?


土, 30 7月 2022 11:45

What Sound is this?

As part of today's elementary school class looking at the five senses (sight, smell, taste, touch and hearing) my students discovered this sound:

What can you hear?

Do you know what it is?



土, 02 7月 2022 08:03

Cream Tea

  Here is something to brighten up your weekend. Watch as Paul shows you how to, eats and finishes a Cream Tea in just over 1 minute.

  A 'Cream Tea' is a kind of Afternoon Tea, usually two scones served with clotted cream and jam, all washed down with a pot of tea.


日, 26 6月 2022 10:57

Robot Time

  As part of our English and Electronics course (英語で電気工作教室) I've had great fun building these mini-robots using only an Arduino Uno, Sparkfun's Pan/Tilt Bracket and some connecting wires.

  While the bracket build can be little complicated for young students, there is a real sense of acheivement once completed. Hooking the bracket up to the Arduino is as simple as making sure the servos have got power and then connecting the control wires to the correct ports on the Arduino.A few cable ties help keep everything tidy! The pan/tilt bracket really needs to be mounted on something or it will just keep falling over. In this case I used a piece of wood to mount both the pan/tilt bracket and the Arduino Uno.

  On the software side, the stuff that controls how the robot moves, we would usually use the mBlock application. This is a block based coding system which is easy for young minds (and old!) to understand. Although in this video, which is intended as a demonstration, I used the Arduino Servo Library and modified the basic sweep program.

  The slowly pulsating LED lights are not controlled by the Arduino, they have their own 'chip' and were salvaged from a children's toy. As this is intended to be used as a demonstartion I thought the lights added a bit more excitement!


日, 26 6月 2022 07:36

At School

  Also in our Satuday Kinder class we've started on the second book in the Potato Pals series, At School.

  Here is a video from the books creator, Patrick Jackson, so you can practise at home.


土, 25 6月 2022 15:44

The Pinocchio Song

 Today I introduced our Kinder class students to The Pinocchio Song from Super Simple Songs.

 This song has been a staple of our young learner classes for years but today was the first time since the Corona pandemic that I've used it in class. Great song, and after a little hesitation, all the children joined in and had a great time!

  Hishashiburi or as we say in English, 'it's been a long time'!!


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