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Virtual Summit Keynote Highlights

Apr 13, 2020

Wonder Workshop's Virtual Summit 2020

Highlights from Vikas Gupta

We opened the first ever Wonder Workshop Virtual Summit today with a look back at Wonder Workshop’s founding, early days, some recent announcements, and news for what we are launching in the coming weeks and months. You can watch the video of the keynote here: https://virtualsummit.makewonder.com/talks/opening-keynote/. With more than 4,500 educators and parents registered for the summit from across the globe, we are looking forward to sharing more resources, tips and tricks and ways to engage our youth in robotics and coding throughout the rest of the event. 

We founded Wonder Workshop inspired by our children — what was especially insightful for me was the time I spent with my daughter away from work in 2012. We know that our children will grow up in a world now more than ever surrounded by technology. We want them to use the tech in their hands to create and invent, and not merely consume. This desire is what motivates each of us at Wonder Workshop to come to work every day or now from home these days 🙂

We are excited to see that over the years, our Dash, Dot, and Cue robots have reached more than 25,000 elementary and middle schools across the US, and across more than 4,000 school districts (out of 13,300). In 2019, more than 233,000 Dash robots were active — that’s more than half of the robots sold since we started Wonder Workshop. In addition, more than 1 million free play Blockly programs were written, and nearly 7 million challenges were attempted in Blockly. And that was just in 2019! We’ve come a long way from imagining what Dash would look like 7 years ago.

In 2019, we released Blockly on Chromebooks. Now Dash can be programmed directly from the Chrome browser at code.makewonder.com, extending accessibility to more users

We host various resources for teachers and parents online at portal.makewonder.com, including Class Connect. Class Connect gives teachers, parents, and coaches a tool where they can track student progress, find extensive lesson plans to challenge students further, and use resources for their own professional development. We wanted to ensure that our educators have the tools that they need to tailor instruction to every student — no matter where they are at.

Class Connect

We’ve been working on finding the means to help schools and districts implement coding and robotics at scale, while keeping the cost of implementation low. We want to give coaches and teachers the ability to let students continue to program Dash from home, where they don’t necessarily have access to a robot. In doing so, we wanted to make sure we preserve the magic and charm of Dash and its personality.

Today we are excited to announce the Dash Simulator, a robot that can be accessed and programmed from within Blockly. Currently still in beta testing, The Dash Simulator, comes with a virtual world that Dash lives in and interacts with the programs that you write in Blockly. These programs can then be run from the same app on a physical robot  — or shared from the app like any other Blockly program to take it to another device. The programs are also saved in the cloud, associated with the profiles, and migrated to any other device on the same Class Connect license.


Introducing our newest member of the Wonder Workshop family.

The Dash Simulator is available for no additional fee as a part of the Class Connect license. If you have a Class Connect license, you will get access to the Dash Simulator without taking any additional steps.

Today we are opening up beta access to the Dash Simulator. You can sign up for the beta access at https://makewonder.com/earlyaccess.

In order to access the Dash Simulator, you will need to have a Class Connect license. We are extending the Class Connect free trials to go on until the end of the school year — June 30, 2020. You can sign up for a free trial for Class Connect here: https://www.makewonder.com/class-connect/.


We will be letting more and more people into the Beta access for Dash Simulator over the upcoming weeks. Please know that this is an early access program, and that the software will be a little rough on the edges. We ask for your patience, and we ask you to share your feedback with us so that we can continue to improve this exciting new feature to better meet your needs and expectations.

We will be prioritizing the existing Class Connect licensed users, Wonder League coaches, and the Wonder Squad members for the beta access before admitting others. Please stay tuned as we expand the access.

The Dash Simulator will be available after the beta as a part of Class Connect, including the free trials, starting in May this year.

I am grateful for the support we’ve gotten from teachers and parents around the world, and I am excited to bring Dash in a virtual world with you all. We hope that in these trying times when every parent is thrust in a role of an educator, and all teachers and students have been thrust into the world of distance learning, we can offer a little bit to help continue to develop the 21st century skills for children all over the world.

Wonder League Robotics Competition FAQ | Year 8

Hello, robotics enthusiasts! If you’re here, you’re probably as excited as we are about the 8th Annual Wonder League Robotics Competition! To help you and your teams have the best possible experience competing this year, we wanted to share answers to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

Who Can Compete:

Any kid, anywhere in the world, ages 6-8 (Innovator Cup) and 9-12 (Pioneer Cup). There are two age brackets: 6-8 and 9-12 and team members have to fall within the age category at some point during the competition. Participants must be the qualifying age for their bracket on the last day of the competition, but if they gain a year during the competition, that’s OK. They won’t age out! 

Competition Brackets:

  • Innovator Cup (Age 6-8)
  • Pioneer Cup (Age 9-12)

What Makes a Team:

A team is made up of a supervising adult coach, and one or more children (up to 5). That’s right, kids can compete solo, but a coach who is 18+ is needed to help with the submission process. For multi-kid teams, each member must be in the same age bracket. Coaches may have multiple teams and can register all their teams after registering as a coach. Please keep in mind that each team will need a separate Class Connect registration.

Note: Younger students may participate in the 9-12 age category, but please be aware that the missions have been designed with older students and advanced coding skills in mind.

What a Team Needs to Compete:

Class Connect subscription

The team is made up of a supervising adult coach and one to five members

  1. Compatible device
  2. 5′ x 8′ mat of 30cm squares and basic prototyping materials
  3. Teams in 6-8 & 9-12 age brackets will need a Dash robot
  4. Internet access to download and upload materials

Teams will need one Dash robot: https://store.makewonder.com/products/dash

Check Device Compatibility here: https://www.makewonder.com/compatibility

We will be offering a mat image that you are welcome to use and print with your local printer, but teams are absolutely encouraged to make their own if they prefer. For more on how to make your own mat, check out this blog post.

Coaches will, of course, need internet access to download the apps and keep up with the competition as it progresses, and may want to print out some kid-facing materials that we will provide at each stage.

Class Connect Subscription:

To register for the 8th Wonder League Robotics Competition requires a subscription to Class Connect, providing additional resources like standards-aligned content assignable right inside a student’s Blockly app. Learn more about Class Connect here.

If you already have a Class Connect subscription, you have access to register a team, based on your student license amount. If you have more than one team of 5 students, you will need to purchase another Coach Success Pack or consider a larger subscription to accommodate more teams and students.

  1. A Coach Success Pack provides:
    Participation in the WLRC for up to 5 students
    Access to all Missions
    Full access to Class Connect, (including Math Activities and Dash’s Neighborhood), for 5 students and 1 teacher for 7 months
    A discount code for a Dash robot from our online store at https://store.makewonder.com

Please note: Teams will need a physical Dash robot to complete the Missions.
The Coaches’ Dashboard in Class Connect will help our coaches register and manage their team(s). The dashboard will be your one-stop shop for all Wonder League Robotics Competition management. You will be able to access the Coaches’ Corner–where all competition-related content and resources will be hosted–the Heartbeat community forum, and all the submission forms right there on the Dashboard.

Accessing Missions for the Innovator Cup and Pioneer Cup:

Once your purchase is completed for Class Connect, you will receive an email to activate your Class Connect license.

Once this license is activated, you will be able to register yourself as a coach and register your teams. This is done on your portal page under the Robotics Competition tab.

Once your team/teams are registered, you will get an additional email from CoAssemble, our partner hosting the missions this year. This email will state you have been registered for the “2022-2023 Coaches Corner Course”.

Click on the link to be redirected to the CoAssemble website, and you will see the course and can access the Coaches’ Corner Guide as well as the Missions (available November 3, 2022).

Still having trouble accessing all the resources in the Coaches’ Corner? If you have previously had a license to Class Connect and registered as a coach, and have not seen Coaches’ Corner added to your CoAssemble list of courses, please email us at support@makewonder.com, and we will provide assistance.

Last Year’s Missions:

Taking a peek at last year’s missions might help you get a sense of what the competition is like. Just sign in with your Class Connect subscription and register as a coach to take a peek at the previous years by going to the Coaches’ Corner and selecting the desired year.

2022-23 Wonder League Robotics Competition Milestone Dates:

Here are important milestone dates to keep in mind as coaches develop timelines for teams competing in the 2022-23 Wonder League Robotics Competition.


  1. October 21, 2022: Student Team Registration Opens
  2. November 3, 2022: Round One Opens + Five Mission Released
  3. January 13, 2023: Student Team Registration Closes
  4. January 27, 2023: Mission Evidence Submission Closes 
  5. January 28-March 5, 2023: Invitational Round Notification 
  6. February 6, 2023: Invitational Round Opens + Final Mission Released
  7. March 24, 2023: Invitational Round Submission Due 
  8. April 10, 2023: People’s Choice Voting Opens 
  9. April 21, 2023: People’s Choice Voting Closes 
  10. May 4, 2023: 2022-23 Wonder League Robotics Competition Winner Announcement

NEW Award Category: WLRC People’s Choice Award

Teams may opt in to participate in the WLRC People’s Choice Award category by creating a :30 second video explaining the Team’s Invitational Round Final Mission solution that will be shared with the community at www.makewonder.com/classroom/robotics-competition/ in an “online crowd vote” competition. The WLRC People’s Choice Award allows teams to share and celebrate their work in the WLRC and encourage community support in voting for their team. This is an optional category for teams to enter and will not impact scoring of the Invitational Round submission as they will be judged by STEM and Coding experts using a published rubric.

Children’s Privacy:

We take our participants’ privacy very seriously and comply with COPPA when collecting any information. In the invitational round we ask only for the students’ first names, and request parents’ permission. For those that make it into the Invitational Round, we ask for full names, again with permission. We are never marketing, selling to, or corresponding with children. All contact is through the proxy of the coach.