For years, I have used mBots with my grade 6 classes. Because of COVID and online teaching, the last time I taught this unit was in the spring of 2019. Finally, we’re bringing the mBots out of storage.
There have been many changes to mBlock since 2018 - right from connecting. We use the 2.4g wireless dongle with our mac laptops instead of bluetooth - we have up to 23 students and mBots working at the same time in a small space. The option to work in “live” vs “upload” mode is more obvious now. I prefer to have my students work in live mode. I’m working with mBlock v5.4.0.
Unfortunately, I’ve found a problem that didn’t exist before. The line follower in particular is very slow to react to sensing a black line. For example, if I simply program the mBot to stop when both line followers sense black (value = 0), I have to set the mBot at only 40% speed for it to actually react. When it finally stops, it is well past the black line. If I work in upload mode, it reacts as expected and stops immediately upon sensing the black line. Programing a functional line follower will be impossible in live mode from what I can see (which I used to be able to do).
Given that I am working with 20+ grade 6 boys at a time… I would prefer to work in upload mode and avoid managing cables and uploading.
I presume the issue is the communication speed of the wireless connection… I’m really surprised at how slow it is with the newer version of mBlock.
Thanks for any suggestions to make live mode work more effectively!