A blocks-based visual environment to teach robot-programming to K-12 students

Raghavender Goud Yadagiri, Sai Prasanth Krishnamoorthy, Vikram Kapila

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper considers the use of a blocks-based visual environment to demonstrate and teach robot-programming to K-12 students. A visual programming environment is built using the open-source, JavaScript-based, Blockly library developed by Google. For illustrative purposes, we employ a low-cost, single-board computer, such as Raspberry Pi, with embedded microcontrollers, such as Brick Pi for LEGO or Arduino UNO. Two mobile robot forms are created for experimentation, a wheeled mobile robot and a two legged mobile robot. To command and control each mobile robot, the developed visual tool employs blocks corresponding to basic programming constructs such as loops, conditional statements, variables, and procedures. To demonstrate the ease, education, and fun value of our approach, a maze-based educational game has been developed. Specifically, the game requires the user to program a robot through our visual tool to navigate the maze and score points that are distributed throughout the maze.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-32
Number of pages9
JournalComputers in Education Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • Education


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