Learning from Programming Robots: Gifted Third Graders Explorations in Mathematics Through Problem Solving

H. Bahadir Yanik, Terri L. Kurz, Yasin Memis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Oftentimes, elementary students are not provided with rich, investigative lessons that support computation thinking (CT) and critical analysis through the use of tools. The purpose of this study was to explore how programming educational robotics (ERs) support third grade gifted students' CT skills in the context of Taxicab geometry focusing on data processing abilities and time estimation skills. Using qualitative case study methodology, data were gathered though classroom interviews, observations and document analyses. Results indicated that ERs provided students with opportunities for both learning programming in early grades and applying mathematical knowledge and skills through a meaningful task that supported content commonly emphasized in mathematics. Specifically, there was growth in student understanding in terms of abstraction, decomposition, algorithmic thinking, evaluation, and generalization. The findings also suggested that working with ERs supported students' estimation and data processing skills. Implications are provided for the integration of ERs as a tool for primary gifted students' learning of mathematics in technology-mediated environments emphasizing CT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResearch Anthology on Computational Thinking, Programming, and Robotics in the Classroom
PublisherIGI Global
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781668424124
ISBN (Print)9781668424117
StatePublished - Jan 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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