LEGO Mindstorms ev3 robotics

 

The EV3 offers kids a compelling reason to learn to design and code.  At an introductory level, kids program the robot to move using steering blocks.  At this level, kids can teach the robot to do things like dance or parallel park. 


One step up and the kids are designing and programming arms.  Now they can tackle missions like the Green City, Basketball and the 3 second Drag Race.  These three challenges were offered during our summer camps in 2015.


At a more sophisticated level, kids will start using and programming sensors.  These sensors allow a robot to read color, distance, touch etc and to respond to their environment.  Through the Pi Q Math curriculum, kids will learn to do things like push a stubborn object accurately to a parking spot while adjusting their steering with a gyroscope sensor which will ensure that they are staying on a straight path.


Once a child has a solid background in programming, using sensors and building arms they are ready to tackle a First LEGO League competition!

Testing out a programming idea.

The LEGO building center.

Success with the 30 second Basketball Mission!

Multiple teams working on the Green City challenge mat.

Programming, testing, thinking.

The Wind Turbine mission on the Green City mat from LEGO Education had several requirements.  The robot must start completely within base, drive to the mission model and release the fan blades and a “jewel” by hitting a lever.  The kids received extra points if they return the jewel to base once the mission was complete.  The kids designed the arms, catching device and did all of the programming.

The Power Plant mission is slightly more complex.  The robot must start completely within base, drive to the mission model, knock down the black smokestack and lift the white smokestack in order to release a “jewel”.  The kids received extra points if they return the jewel to base once the mission was complete.

The Trash Container mission is the most difficult mission on this mat.  The robot must start completely within base, drive out to pick up a “trash loop”, and then place this loop on top of the trash container in order to release a “jewel”.  The kids received extra points if the loop remained on top of the container at the end of the mission and if they return the jewel to base once the mission was complete.  This solution took two days as well as very patient and persistent team work to complete!