Lesson: 20V ESR PB&J Processor (Group Challenge)

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This group challenge develops Computational Thinking skills within your squad by having them write machine-level code (very simple steps) for a human PB&J Processor.... a.k.a. their Squad Leader.

1) Watch this Code.org video on Microprocessors:

....then walk your Squad through this online PowerPoint:

The PB&J Processor Presentation

or pdf:

The PB&J Processor PDF

2) Answer any questions about the Lab and then let students start "coding".  You can provide students this page of the available instructions and syntax:

PB&J Processor Instructions & Syntax

3) When students are ready to test their first code (they do NOT need to be completely done to try their code):

  • Have the selected student read their code (it must be written down) one line at a time while you act out the commands.
  • To prevent students from making corrections on-the-fly, have the student who is reading the instructions face away from the processor (you/their camera)... others can tell them what went wrong when a "bug" is encountered.
  • Cycle through the teams quickly – as soon as faulty instruction is encountered, have that student work on a fix, while another student “runs their code”.
  • Run as many iterations as desired. The goal is to have student realize that something as intuitive to them as making a sandwich is very tedious to accomplish in the simple and limited machine language of a processor.

NOTE: As students run their code, you will act out their instructions.  However, you will freeze (crash) if:

  • any words other than those ion the instruction page are used
  • any instruction does not follow the syntax
  • any instruction conflicts with previous instructions
  • any instruction cannot be carried because a required preceding instruction was omitted

All instructions must be in written down and read verbatim by the student – abbreviations may be used.


Scope & Sequence: 
HW Platform: 
SW Platform: 
Interactivity Style: