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Posts Tagged ‘robotics’


Building on the bed

Building on the bed

After the County Fair, Dana and Joey decided to continue working on their 4-H robotics project at our house, since Dana has the same “Mindstorms for Schools” RCX robotics kit that the 4-H office uses. Since their interest is up, there is really no reason for them not to continue. They are zipping through the activities, learning about adding on sensors and how to program the robot for using them with the Robolab CD program. Interestingly, Dana has learned that he must do some math to figure out how to program the light sensor correctly. I am glad to see him learning that math is necessary to do science, but learning it in a simple way that doesn’t overwhelm him with some complicated formula. Hooray for hands-on science!
Robot with touch sensor bumper

Robot with touch sensor bumper

Light sensor robot follows the line

Light sensor robot follows the line

Joey’s brother and sister come along, too, and enjoy watching the results. Then they all get to have a play-date or do some other activity together.
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Testing the Loop Program

Testing the Loop Program

The past week started of with a bang when we returned from a more-than-a-week vacation at the beach to find out that Dana’s 4-H robotics group had to meet the next day (Tuesday) to finish one more project and be ready for judging on Wednesday! The unpacking got done in pieces as Dana and I frantically worked to get his project book up to speed, too. I wasn’t sure that Dana could handle the judging. After all, he had frozen up when trying to explain his project to his club members and their parents. But that was different from answering questions from one person. AS affects kids in different ways. The other Aspie boy in the robotics group is a talker. Dana is painfully shy with new people or in front of groups. He really wanted to do it, though, so I did what I could to help him prepare. It turned out that he did fine!  Although he hadn’t seemed concerned about what grade he would get, he broke into the biggest grin I ever saw when he heard that he got a grade of “A” and a written comment about his “nice book.” I was very proud of him! We went to Mickey D’s (his favorite eating place) to celebrate.

They only got through half the project book since the robotics program got off to a late start this first year. Now the boys will continue doing the activities in the book and have it all finished by fair time next year. Then they can move on to the next level. The 4-H robotics program has been wonderful for Dana. (See previous posts)

On Thursday I ordered the “Math on the Level” books and they arrived on Saturday! That’s fast shipping! I am very excited, but a bit overwhelmed, so I have spent what time I could since they arrived familiarizing myself with how the program works. I have set up my record keeping forms, decided about what Dana has already learned and written the first two “5-a-Day” pages for him. Right now I will be checking up on what he needs to learn and what he needs to review. Meanwhile, we will have lessons on metric measurements and include a set of filmstrips and manipulatives I have.

 At the present time I feel a need to go back to writing weekly lesson plans as a guide. That is done and I have our materials organized and the workboxes filled for Monday. Now, I hope to be able to enjoy what little is left of the weekend!

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Dana and his fellow robotics group members are rolling along. Start the Smilebox and click the hand at the bottom to view the team at work.

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: 4-H Robotics
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