Education Gifted Education

Train Computational Thinking at your own pace

Automation, in the broadest sense, is everywhere we look. In the future, we will rely more and more on technology to improve health care, transportation and logistics and the production of goods. Even if you don’t pursue a technical career, you’ll be better off with an understanding of the tools that drive our modern society.

RoboMind is meant to be a first introduction to automation and programming without prerequisites. Because many different exercises can be done, the difficulty level can be tailored to students of various age and levels.

A great advantage for gifted students is that they can progress through the courses at their own pace. The self-contained courses have automatic validation and hints and a virtual mentor checks solutions and gives hints when needed to help them further. Most lessons further contain optional and more difficult challenges that allow the gifted student to delve deeper into the course material.

Apart from the courses, students can also do so called 'Community Challenges' (also checked by the virtual mentor) among which are some pretty difficult assignments. Even University Professors have been know to frown a couple of minutes over some of them, so gifted students should be able to amuse themselves creating solutions for these challenges. The course materials have been used by groups of gifted students in The Netherlands, and we have received enthusiastic feedback from both students and teachers.


Effective learning and teaching
RoboMind has proven to be a very effective introduction to logic, robotics and computer science (or: computational thinking).
Easy to get started
Thanks to the latest technologies RoboMind Academy runs everywhere on virtually every device both at home and at school. Very convenient if you want to implement a flipped classroom.
Fun and engaging
Teachers from all over the world report that Robomind keeps students captivated for the whole duration of the course. The motivational world of robotics provides an engaging theme with clear goals.
Provides flexibility to the teacher
Time-saving curriculum and self-paced courses with automatic validation and hints provide flexibility for 1-on-1 attention. The courses are self-contained so that the teacher can concentrate on mentoring the students.
Supports general curriculum standards in many countries
Lessons are designed to support and enhance a variety of standards. For example:
US CSTA K-12 Computer Science Standards, AP Comp Sci, Common Core State Standards (CCSS), and STEM education.
UK computing programmes of study: keys stage level 1 to 3
NL Ready for Computer Literacy and Technology Education, SLO (4,23,24,44,45), NLT (A,B,E,F)
Find a list of all features over here

What you will learn

As students go through the courses, they get acquainted with the possibilities and impossibilities of programming and acquire insight into the power of logic. They will also gradually learn how a large problem can be solved by breaking it up into smaller pieces which can be solved more easily. This, of course, is a skill that comes in handy when doing other courses or studying other application areas.

Everybody in this country should learn to program because it teaches you how to think
 — Steve Jobs

With programming, you learn how to automate repetitive tasks, transform perceptions into actions and come up with ways to make smart decisions, even if in unknown situations. However, purely teaching how to program is not our main goal.

When teaching a natural language, you do not aim to train students to become writers. When teaching math, pupils do not need to end up as mathematicians. With programming it is the same. You do not need to become a programmer to benefit from understanding fundamental concepts. That is why we rather talk about Computational Thinking...

Computational Thinking
Programming Mathematics Problem solving Creating solutions Communication Applications Understanding
Control flow (sequences, loops, conditionals, procedures), Syntax, Programming paradigms Logic, Geometry, Algebra, Statistics State space, Goals, Problem formulation, Search strategies, Solutions, Execution, Evaluation Modelling, Abstracting, Debugging, Refactoring, Documentation Project management, Pair programming, Sharing knowledge Robotics, Art, Transportation, Logistics, Planning, Home automation Explain working, Questioning solutions, Seeing Patterns: in Applications and across Domains

Computational thinking is sometimes organized around three main aspects: Computational Concepts, Computational Practices, Computational Perspectives. The RoboMind Academy recognized seven areas that are covered.

Find out more abour Computational thinking over here

Suggested courses

For a fully self-contained step-by-step introduction which leads to validated Computational Thinking diplomas students can do the following courses:

Every lesson starts with a short multimedia presentation which highlights some aspects of what robots do and what their role is in society. In addition a brief explanation is given about the programming instructions used in the exercises and why these could be useful. Further quizzes are added to give more insight and make extra sure that everything is understood correctly. The introduction part takes about 15-20 minutes and can be given in the classroom (for example on a smartboard, Options: Show fullscreen) or independently by the student. The quizzes are certainly also fun to do with the whole class.

The workshop is a more concise programming introduction which can be done in place of the Basics 1 Course.

To continue, students can do the Community challenges, a set of increasingly difficult challenges. The more difficult challenges are better suited for older students at the high school-level. Since they are more able to learn by discovery, they can exploit the "Help" documentation (at the bottom of each challenge page) to solve these challenges. There they will find information about basic instructions, loops, conditions, logical Expressions, procedures, arithmetic, and variables.

Over 100 maps in the Map Chest give you the opportunity to create your own challenges to go with the maps. Or let the students use your own fantasy to make the robot perform tasks in the different environments. Another options is to use, for example, the "Line maps" to solve increasingly more difficult line follow tasks.

A somewhat different and exciting possibility is to export programs to a real robot like the Lego NXT. Learn the difference between navigating in RoboMind versus navigating in the real world. Learn about calibration while getting your robot to work. For this track you need to install the RoboMind desktop software which can be tried for free with a 30-days trial license. After that you need a Desktop Account to continue. For more information see the RoboMind Documentation pages .

How our lessons map to the national curriculums

CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 (Grades 6-9, 10-14 years)

The Computer Science Teachers Association has formulated a core set of learning standards designed to provide the foundation for a complete computer science curriculum and its implementation at the K-12 level. Below an overview is given of the subset of these standards which match with the RoboMind Academy curriculum. For the complete overview of all standards as please go here.

General Requirements

Uses computational thinking for problem-solving
See, for example, Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following. Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
Addresses issues relevant to the world around us
See, for example, Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following. Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
Focuses on active learning and exploration
Robomind Academy keeps students captivated for the whole duration of the course. Results are shown immediately. You can incrementally improve solutions until the robot does what you want. Work at your own speed while automatic hints help you further if needed.
Introduces the fundamental concepts of computer science to all students
RoboMind has proven to be an effective and motivating introduction. Fundamental concepts are learned in a fun way.
Increases the availability of rigorous computer science for all students
RoboMind is used all over the world and can be programmed in 27 languages.
Prepares students to understand the nature of computer science and its place in the modern world
Through a gradual build up through the courses, students will learn about loops, conditions, functions and general problem solving. For example in Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following. Basics-2: mazes, reading barcodes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
Use computer science skills (especially computational thinking) in problem-solving activities in other subjects.
The RoboMind Desktop environment supports export of programs to Lego MindStorm. See how your creations run in the real word. Calibrate your robot design. See how a RoboMind program compares to a program in the Lego environment.

Computational Thinking (CT)

L2.CT-01 Understand and use the basic steps in algorithmic problem solving to design solutions
Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following.
L2.CT-03 Define an algorithm as a sequence of instructions that can be processed by a computer
Basics-1, 1-star challenges.
L2.CT-04 Evaluate ways that different algorithms may be used to solve the same problem
Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
L2.CT-05 Act out searching and sorting algorithms (2-5)
Basics-2: vacuum cleaning, repairing roads, 3 and 4 star challenges
L2.CT-07 Describe and analyze a sequence of instructions being followed
Sequencing, tell what program is going to do; quizzes.
L2.CT-06 Represent data in a variety of ways including text, sounds, pictures, and numbers
Basics-2: random dice rolls, bar codes
L2.CT-09 Interact with content-specific models and simulations
All challenges.
L2.CT-12 Use abstraction to decompose a problem into sub-problems
Basics-1: line following, tracking and tracing. Basics-2: mazes.

Computing, Practice and Programming (CPP)

CPP.L2-04 Demonstrate an understanding of algorithms and their practical application
All quizzes, application: Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following. Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
CPP.L2-05 Implement problem solutions using a programming language, including: looping behavior, conditional statements, logic, expressions, variables, and functions
All content. Functions especially Basics-2: secret language, drawing portraits, reading barcodes.
CPP.L2-06 Demonstrate good practices in personal information security, using passwords, encryption, and secure transactions
RoboMind Academy is personal and users should demonstrate good personal information security, using passwords.
CPP.L2-09 Collect and analyze data that is output from multiple runs of a computer program
Especially random search exercises like Basics-2: vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.

Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

The Common Core State Standards provide a understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that young people need for success in college and careers.

Below the Mathematical Practice grouping of these standards as mapped to the CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 standards and the RoboMind Academy Curriculum. For the complete mapping to the CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 standards see this document.

College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards: Reading
Reading Standards for Literacy in Science/ Technical Subjects
CT.L2-05 and CPP.L2-09
College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards: Writing
Writing Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects 6-12
College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards: Language
Standards for Mathematical Practice
CT.L2-01,CT.L2-04, CT.L2-07, CT.L2-09, CT.L2-12, CPP.L2-04, CPP.L2-05, and CPP.L2-09.

STEM Cluster Topics

Below an overview of STEM Cluster Topics as mapped to CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 and the courses offered by the RoboMind Academy. For a complete mapping to the CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 standards see this document.
Academic Foundations
CT.L2-01, CT.L2-07, CT.L2-09, and CPP.L2-09.
Problem-Solving & Critical Thinking
CT.L2-01, CT.L2-05, CT.L2-06, CT.L2-12, CPP.L2-04, CPP.L2-05, and CPP.L2-09.
Information Technology Applications
CT.L2-01, CT.L2-04, CT.L2-05, CT.L2-06, CT.L2-07, CT.L2-09, CPP.L2-04, CPP.L2-05, and CPP.L2-09.
Technical Skills
CT.L2-07, CPP.L2-06 and CPP.L2-09.

Advanced Placement Computer Science (AP Comp Sci)

Advanced Placement Computer Science A emphasizes object-oriented programming methodology with an emphasis on problem solving and algorithm development. It also includes the study of data structures and abstraction. For a complete overview see this document. Topics from APCS covered to a certain extend in the RoboMind Academy are listed below:
Read and understand a problem's description, purpose, and goals
Specify the purpose and goals for a problem
Decompose a problem into subproblems
Identify reusable components from existing code
Control: Methods, Sequential, Conditional, Iterations, and Recursion
Categorize errors
Understand and modify existing code
Reason about programs: Preconditions and postconditions
Analysis of algorithms Informal comparisons of running times: Exact calculation of statement execution counts, Worst-case and average-case time and space analysis
Computing in Context

Partnership for 21st Century Essential Skills

To help practitioners integrate skills into the teaching of core academic subjects, the Partnership has developed a unified, collective vision for learning known as the Framework for 21st Century Learning. This Framework describes the skills, knowledge and expertise students must master to succeed in work and life; it is a blend of content knowledge, specific skills, expertise and literacies. For more information see this document.

Below the so called "Partnership for 21st Century Essential Skills " are mapped to the CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 standards and the RoboMind Academy Curriculum. For the complete mapping to the CSTA K-12 Computer Science - Level 2 standards see this document.

Demonstrate originality and inventiveness in work and understand the real world limits to adopting new ideas
Elaborate, refine, analyze and evaluate ideas in order to improve and maximize creative efforts
View failure as an opportunity to learn; understand that creativity and innovation is a long-term, cyclical process of small successes and frequent mistakes
Reason Effectively
Use Systems Thinking
Make Judgments and Decisions
Solve Problems
Information Literacy
Work Independently
Be Self-directed Learners

Computing programmes of study

The computing programmes of study as published by the UK Department of Education states that:

  • A high-quality computing education equips pupils to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world.
  • Computing provides insights into both natural and artificial systems.
  • Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate.
  • The core of computing is computer science.

Below a mapping is given between the courses offered by the RoboMind Academy and the computing programmes of study for each relevant Key Stage.

Key Stage 2 (7-11 years)

Design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals, including controlling or simulating physical systems
Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following. Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads
Solve problems by decomposing them into smaller parts
Basics-1: line following, tracking and tracing, Basics-2: mazes
Use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs
Basics-1: slalom, painting floors, factories
Work with variables and various forms of input and output
Basics-1: navigating, tracking and tracing, line following.
Use logical reasoning to explain how some simple algorithms work
All quizzes.
Detect and correct errors in algorithms and programs
All challenges, specifically Basics-2: reading barcodes.
Select, use and combine a variety of software on a range of digital devices to design and create a range of programs, systems and content that accomplish given goals
The RoboMind Desktop environment supports export of programs to Lego MindStorm. See how your creations run in the real word. Calibrate your robot design. See how a RoboMind program compares to a program in the Lego environment.

Key Stage 3 (11-14 years)

Understand several key algorithms that reflect computational thinking
Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.
Use logical reasoning to compare the utility of alternative algorithms for the same problem
Basics-2: mazes, vacuum cleaning, repairing roads.


Kerndoelen geven aan wat iedere basisschool in elk geval moet nastreven om hun leerlingen mee te geven. Deze doelen omschrijven het eind van een leerproces, niet de wijze waarop ze kunnen worden bereikt. De kerndoelen zijn te vinden op de website van het Nationaal Expertisecentrum Leerplanontwikkeling (SLO). Met RoboMind lesmateriaal komen de volgende kerndoelen aan bod:
Nederlands: Schriftelijk onderwijs
4. De leerlingen leren informatie te achterhalen in informatieve en instructieve teksten, waaronder schema’s, tabellen en digitale bronnen.
Rekenen/Wiskunde: Wiskundig inzicht en handelen
23. De leerlingen leren wiskundetaal gebruiken.
24. De leerlingen leren praktische en formele rekenwiskundige problemen op te lossen en redeneringen helder weer te geven.
Oriëntatie op jezelf en de wereld: Natuur en techniek
44. De leerlingen leren bij producten uit hun eigen omgeving relaties te leggen tussen de werking, de vorm en het materiaalgebruik.
45. De leerlingen leren oplossingen voor technische problemen te ontwerpen, deze uit te voeren en te evalueren.

Natuur, Leven en Technologie (NLT)

Natuur, Leven en Technologie (NLT) is een vak voor de bovenbouw havo en vwo (Tweede Fase). NLT laat zien hoe een combinatie van verschillende disciplines nodig is om complexe vraagstukken uit de wereld van bèta en technologie op te lossen. Het vak is bedoeld als afronding van de natuurprofielen en als voorbereiding op de keuze voor een studie op het gebied van bèta/technologie. Meer over NLT is te vinden op de NLT website.

De volgende vaardigheden voor het vak NLT worden in meer of mindere mate getraind in de RoboMind Academy:

Domein A: Vaardigheden
A01: Informatievaardigheden gebruiken
A03: Reflecteren op leren
A04: Studie en beroep
A05: Onderzoeken
A06: Ontwerpen
A07: Modelvorming
A08: Natuurwetenschappelijk instrumentarium
A11: Redeneren
A12: Rekenkundige en wiskundige vaardigheden
Domein B: Exacte wetenschappen en technologie
B1: Interdisciplinariteit
B2: Wisselwerking tussen natuurwetenschap en technologie
Domein E: Technologische ontwikkeling
E1: Methoden en technieken van technologische ontwikkeling
E2: Processen en producten
Domein F Fundamenten van natuurwetenschap en technologie
F1: Fundamentele theorieën
F2: Methoden en technieken van onderzoek