Lesson Materials

CCW Cohort Teachers, click on the link below to access editable worksheets and presentation slides.

Lesson materials from previous years:

Teacher’s Guide

Materials Guide

A list of all materials used in the Cellular Construction Workshop, including purchasing source, item number, and price. Also contains a list of materials available to borrow at the SEP Resource Center.

EV3 Robot Setup

If your school site already has EV3 robots, this guide walks you through set up to connect them to Open Roberta.

Grants for Classroom Supplies

To help teachers purchase materials to do the Cellular Construction Lessons, we included a list of grant resources that may help secure funds for robots or other classroom materials.

Biology Introduction

Cell, Cell, What is a Cell?

Introduction activity to cell biology. Using a wide range of objects, students discuss properties of a cell.

Cells Alive!

Introduction activity to cell biology. Students observe single-celled organisms and try to identify behaviors and/or characteristics that demonstrate these organisms are alive.

Experimental Models

Exploration of model organisms in science. Students discuss pros and cons of using different organisms as experimental models.

Robotics Introduction

Building Instructions

EV3 default robot building instructions found here.

Mystery Program

Robot troubleshooting activity. Establishes the robot as a model for a cell through a reverse engineering activity.

Programming Module

Get your students up to speed with Open Roberta through series of incomplete and unfinished programs that guide students through programming basics.

Misc. Robot Set-up

Worksheets for Open Roberta student account set-up, Robot Quick Start Guide, and more.

Biology Experiments

Bacterial Transformation

Students explore genetically engineered bacteria and their ability to report on the conditions in their environment. Students then create their own genetically engineered bacteria.

Hydra Self-Assembly

This activity explores the ability of cells to organize spontaneously to create complex structures. Hydra self-assemble to repair damage, even from a lump of single cells.

Physarum Chemotaxis 1

This activity explores physarum’s sense and response abilities. Students determine physarum preferences by observing its chemotaxis.

Physarum Chemotaxis 2

This activity builds on physarum chemotaxis 1, and encourages the use of computational thinking in experiment design.

Modeling Biology with Robots

Robot-to-Cell Mindmap

A simple activity that builds a link between robotics and programming, and cells and DNA.

Phototaxis Program

This activity, not only guides student assembly of a robot that can phototax (a behavior where a cell moves toward light), it also guides student computational thinking using flow charts and scenario-based programming.

Chemotaxis Program

After observing physarum chemotaxis, this activity guides students through assembly of a chemotaxing robot.

Final Challenges

This activity offers an open-ended project where students are allowed to create their own robotic solution to a cellular engineering problem.



Cellular engineering has the potential to create solutions to humankind’s challenges, but there are also potential risks and harms that must be accounted for. This module is based of NSF’s Introduction to Bioethics and guides discussion around policy needs and safe guards for cellular engineering.

Open Roberta

Open Roberta is a cloud-based programming language. It’s free to use and compatible with any internet-capable device (iPads, tablets, chromebooks, laptops, etc). Open Roberta also comes with a built-in robot SIM, allowing teachers to offer some of the above robotics lessons without purchasing LEGO robots.