Fun With Robotics (2017)

As part of the 2017 PNG program, the Sparta Public Library hosted four ‘Fun With Robotics’ sessions for young students, below you can find pictures and information about each of the four programs.

Session 1 – Snap Circuit Rovers:

At our first session the students worked with Snap Circuit rovers, this helped give them an introduction to circuits and following instructions to build a robot. Once they finished building the rovers they were able to drive them around the room with remote controls. The students also built an obstacle course to practice driving, and experimenting with different scenarios and how they impacted the performance of the rovers.

Session 2 – mBots:

During our second session, students were given a chance to go hands on with mBots. The robots have several modes pre-installed on them that the students were able to experiment with. The robots use a small remote allowing the students to switch between modes and drive the robots. The mBot’s modes include wall avoidance which uses sensors to swerve and avoid hitting the wall, as well as line follow, which causes the mBot to follow a line. The mBots also work with the mBlock software, which allows the students to use a visually based drag and drop interface to create code for their robots. The students could create predefined paths for the robots to follow, and could also create custom messages and faces with the programmable LED board. Some said hello, some had their name on it, some were eyes and some were patterns. The lights were turned out and the students could really see how their mBot LED panel glowed in the dark. 

Session 3 – LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Construction:

During this sessions the students were able to go hands on a build a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 robot. The students were broke up into teams of two, with each team given a 541 piece kit to build their robot from. The students followed the instructions well, and were able to complete the construction of the robot during the session. This session was a great experience for the students in learning how to follow instructions and in building a really cool robot from a pile of parts!

Session 4 – LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Continued:

In the final session of our Fun With Robotics program, the students were given a chance to try out the LEGO EV3 Mindstorm robots that they build in the last session. The robots offer three unique ways to control them: driving them directly a cellphone or tablet via Bluetooth, creating a simple program on the LEGO robots controller brick directly, or by connect the Robot to a computer and creating a program using the LEGO Mindstorm software. The students were given a chance to try all three methods out, as well as experimenting with changing the design of their robots.