With just over half the Fall Program lessons done, Bits & Bots is already looking ahead to the new year when our Spring 2018 Program will begin. As we continue to expand our group and welcome new members, the Curriculum Team has been working hard to come up with new and exciting activities for the students. Before we reach the end of the semester with our final session taking place on Wednesday, November 8 at the Grove Hall Site of the Boston Public Library, we wanted to share what went on during Sessions Three, Four, and Five:
Session Three - Loops
Some say repetition can be boring, but they haven't experienced it B&B style! The October 11 session was dedicated to teaching students about loops. Our volunteers walked students through building a program that used the loop block to make the robots repeat a certain action. Using the sound and loop blocks, the robots were programmed to repeat a chosen tone. Later, students added wait and move steering blocks to have their bots repeat sounds at specific time intervals while the bot moves around.
Session Four - Push to Move
Lesson Four was all about buttons. Students learned how to make their robots move differently depending on which buttons are pressed. By programming the Brick Buttons to match specific movements, students were able to use move steering blocks to to pick which directions their bots should move. This session ended with a mock race that asked students to successfully use their programmed buttons to complete a race course and cross the finish line.
Session Five - Color Sensors
Green, yellow, red, blue...pick your favorite color! On October 25 B&B used Lesson Five to teach students about color sensors. Building off past lessons with loops, students designed programs that matched different numbers to different colors. As the robots were pointed at objects in the room, a number would display that corresponds to a specific color. Later, students were asked to program their bots to print and read out loud the color they are sensing. Students also learning about Ambient Light Intensity in which the robots can detect how bright a room is. The final bit of the lesson focused on programming a "Nocturnal Robot" so that the bot sleeps when the lights are out and turns on when it senses the lights turning on.
Hope everyone enjoys the Halloween festivities! Keep an eye out for new session recaps and updates on general B&B happenings as we close out the Fall Program.
As we moved toward the October 2 session of the semester, Bits & Bots added some new faces to the team. With many of our original members graduating soon, we've been making an effort to recruit new volunteers to keep B&B going into future school years. We're always adding to our website, so be sure to check out our 'TEAM' page to stay up-to-date with who we are! In the meantime, here are a few pictures of our weekly B&B meeting from last Tuesday:
Session Two was a continuation of the introductory lesson on moving the robots. We were a little short-staffed for the 10/2 session, but our volunteers worked hard to keep the students engaged with the material. Students were asked to program the bots to draw something as they moved. Using the Move Steering block in their programs, the kids created sequences to make drawings. Some of our drawing ideas included letters, shapes, zig-zags, and even a star! Check out the photos below for a closer look at the session:
Aside from our program updates, Bits & Bots has some exciting news to share: we're participating in the 10th annual Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) meeting held at Northeastern the weekend of October 13 - 15. Our three co-founders, Brett, Kim, and Thurston, will all be attending. To learn more about the work we're doing for CGI U, browse our 'CGI U' tabs and come back to the site soon for updates!
Hope you all have a fun and spooky Friday the 13th!
After a few months of summer vacation, Bits & Bots has returned and we're better than ever. Our team has been hard at work planning new lessons and making sure our robot friends are ready to go. If you're interested in what the team thought about last year's program, take a look at our video summary on the 'ABOUT' page!
This Fall 2017 Program will include eight sessions. Lessons will be held every Wednesday from 3:00 - 6:00pm at the Grove Hall site of the Boston Public Library (41 Geneva Ave, Dorchester, MA 0212). Click here for the full schedule.
Our first session of the semester occurred Wednesday, September 27. Our on-site volunteers were happy to see many new faces! With almost a dozen students new to the LEGO bots, a lot of time was spent just having the kids get to know the robots. By the end of the session, Lesson 1 had successfully helped the students understand how the bots move around.
There are a lot of big changes happening for us at Bits & Bots and we can't wait to share updates! As the Fall 2017 Program moves forward, keep an eye out to lesson recaps here on the blog as well as posts across our social media platforms. We're super excited for what's to come and hope you'll come along for the ride.
It's good to be back!