We wrapped up our LEGO Robotics camp at the Bob Sierra YMCA with an exhibition event for campers’ families. Campers’ LEGO
art, rubberband cars, LEGO robots and more were on display. Families learned more about FIRST, while they watched campers’ robot runs, and campers got to try out our robot and some VEX robots we had on hand.
It was a busy, crowded, noisy week of improvisational engineering and education, but in the end, we think everyone came away with some new knowledge and some memorable experiences. Some of the campers, who couldn’t quite get their minds around the collaboration aspect of building and programming, created a LEGO hockey game, complete with a workable set of rules, some great game elements and a way to include all of their impromptu team in the process. Several parents asked how to go about creating FIRST teams or learning programs in local schools, and we were able to provide them with brochures and information about where they could learn more.
Overall, we think we helped the YMCA pull off a really successful camp and hope they’ll continue to provide community-based STEM education for all ages.
As for Team Duct Tape, we’ve got a couple of engineering firm visits scheduled over the next couple of weeks, and then it’s showtime, as the much anticipated 2010-11 FTC Season kicks off in September. We can’t wait!
It rained most of the morning so ALL the campers, from ALL the camps were indoors, one of our classrooms was flooded when a cooler was allowed to drain in the room, the other classroom had to be used by another camp group for more than an hour, and we had to resort to duct taping the game elements onto the playing field to discourage kids – our own and those passing through the classrooms – from dismantling the field (such is the lure of even momentarily unattended LEGOs amid crowds of children!)
A little improvisation and lots of perseverence got us through the day though, and our three teams of campers worked on team banners, picked their favorite rubberband cars, and applied their new building and programming skills on some field challenges.
Everyone should have fun during tomorrow’s Robotics Exhibition, that will feature some simple table runs, rubberband car races, LEGO displays, and our own wiffle ball dispensing Cubie. Several families have inquired about getting FLL going in their children’s elementary schools, so we’ll have information on hand about FIRST for them and others.