Show images of the four main rooms in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: The Chocolate Room, The Inventing Room, The Nut Room and The Television Room (or choose places or scenes from the book that your class has read.)
Ask students to discuss in pairs something important or memorable that happened in each of the rooms.
Introduce Sphero (maybe dressed up as a character from the book). Explain that we are going to program Sphero to navigate a path to various rooms (or scenes) in the book and respond appropriately with colour and movement.
Show how to pair Sphero with an iPad and run a block-based program in Lightning Lab.
Show a few of the basic control blocks and how to change their behaviour (e.g. angle, colour, speed). Do not show too much as students should be playing, discovering and problem-solving with Lightning Lab in their groups.
Explain that students are going to construct their own paths around the Chocolate Factory for Sphero to follow.
Sphero can play the part of Willy Wonka, or another character, or a visitor from your class. Students will need to program Sphero to move around the Factory and interact with the various rooms.
Students work in small groups or pairs to construct a path on the floor using cardboard boxes (or similar) as the different rooms.
This is an opportunity for students to play and find out how to control the Sphero.
Encourage students to be imaginative and consider direction, speed, colour, and sound and how these might be relevant to points in the path or the story.
E.g. Sphero could turn blue (like a giant blueberry) in The Inventing Room. Sphero could slow down and turn pink to represent the Pink Sweet Boat ride in The Chocolate Room.
As students draw lines, teacher asks questions as appropriate:
Reinforce the fact that failure is a good thing! As students work, they should make notes on what works and doesn’t work. They can also compare notes and help other groups out.
Once students have programmed Sphero, choose a couple of groups to present what they have created with the class:
Take photos / video of the presentations and discussions about the learning process.
Bring together the observations from the learning demo and, if possible, show some photos / videos.
Lessons and activities designed to use with Sphero and Lightning Lab, including submissions from teachers across the world, cn be found here