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Have your girls ever been interested in robot development? If your looking for ideas to learn how to create and design, build and program, and present and show off a robot with your girls, you have come to the right place. Using some of these activities below to learn how to design a robot. Below are a few ideas to get you started.
We partnered with CodeSpeak Labs, which specializes in computer science education for kids, to bring you these resources.
Before jumping into some ideas, do you want to skip all the planning? If so, use the Designing Robots Activity Booklet with activities including designing with 8-bit art, learning the parts of a computer, and designing Artificial Intelligence! With step-by-step activities, you can’t ask for an easier way to run your meeting. Learn more about this activity booklet and get yours today!
Be sure to also checkout these other activities your girls will love:
Divide the girls into 2 teams. Give everyone 5 slips of paper. On each piece of paper, write a job that a robot could do- for example, painting a house, acting as a mobile home, taking photos (You don’t need to limit it to robots already in existence).
Shuffle all of the pieces of paper in a hat or other container, and have each girl randomly select 5 slips. Give each girl 5 blank sheets of paper and set a timer for 5 minutes. They have 5 minutes to do 5 sketches: each of a different robot performing one of the jobs written on their slips.
At the end of the time, show each sketch one-by-one and see who can guess what the robot’s job is. The person who sketched and the person who guesses it correctly both get a point for their team.
Stanford professor Tina Seelig is an expert on creativity and draws a lot of her research on good ideas from Silicon Valley. In this video, she talks about the “innovation engine,” a framework of six characteristics like attitude, resources and environment that creative people have.
It is a pretty long video at 20 min, so depending on how much time you have, you might want to just focus on one part of it.
After watching at least the first 10 minutes of the video, the girls can discuss:
The thought process that is behind designing robots is applicable to so many parts of life! The girls can discuss how they can incorporate design thinking in their troop activities, their classes, and more.
First off, they can read this article on Design Thinking in education. This gives a background into design thinking: “In a nutshell, design thinking is a way to define and solve tough challenges. It focuses heavily on rapid prototype solutions and learning from mistakes.”
Then, they can work collaboratively to use design thinking– discussing, for example:
Robotic arms are some of the most prevalent uses of robotics already in the world today, mostly in industry assembly lines. It’s a great example of biomimicry– robots that imitate a human hand.
You can order one on Amazon for about $50 each. It has more than 350 pieces; once constructed, it can pick up and move items. The crane can rotate 360 degrees, and there’s 2 different builds the girls can make. If the girls are also doing other VEX robotics, these pieces are compatible with other sets.
If you don’t want to spend the money to buy a robot, our Robotics Activity Booklet has everything you need — no other materials required!
Additionally If you are like many leaders we want to award our girls when they complete something even beyond just the patch. One great way to show achievement is with a certificate. Don’t worry you don’t have to make them, I found a resource that has done all the work for you and all you have to do is print them and customize the certificates with each girl’s name, badge or award earned, date, and troop leader. Editable certificates perfect for awarding girls after earning a badge.
If you have a multi-level troop you may want to use one of the variations to this program that is geared toward the age of your girls.
K – 1st grade activities:
2nd – 3rd grade activities:
4th – 5th grade activities:
6th – 8th grade activities:
9th – 10th grade activities:
Enjoy every minute being a leader and continue to inspire your girls!
Purchase this wonderful illustrated book from Amazon.