Measuring Length and Perimeter with Spheros

We were fortunate enough in November to have a loan of a set of 12 Spheros - programmable robots that are protected by hard, spherical clear plastic shells - for three weeks. As well as being another opportunity to practise our coding skills (the children spotted that the Spheros are programmed using blocks like in Scratch), we used them in a cross-curricular fashion to measure length and perimeter. The Spheros are controlled using an app on an iPad, and whilst the children could tell them which direction to point (using their knowledge of how many degrees are in a circle), how fast they wanted it to go, and for how long, they couldn't tell it to cover a certain distance. As a result, the children had to work out for themselves - with a metre ruler - the distance covered when the Sphero followed their commands. Once they knew that, they set about working out length and perimeter around the Hub and computer suite.
 
There may be some BB8s on Christmas lists this year...