Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Robot Initiation

For the third time in not very many weeks, I am watching the sunrise through a school bus window. I am taking about a dozen kids on a two hour bus ride that begins before the day does so we can do our first testing of our robot on an actual game course.

This is where I have been the last two months.

Way back last spring, I asked a couple kids if they would be interested in doing the Team America Rocketry Challenge. I got one wishy washy maybe. The other kid said he was kind of more into robots now, so I shelved that particular project.

Sometime this summer, I received some information about the BEST Robotics competition, so, on a whim, I went to my principal in August and asked if we could start a Robotics Team.

Now, I totally expected him to be cautious, tell me to wait a year, find out more about the program.

He said, "Sure, go for it."

Um...okay...right...I need a team.

Well, lucky (?) for me, I was coaching cross country at the time. So sitting around after practice one day, I recruited a good number of my runners to join my robotics team.

Looking back, I can't believe they all said yes. I was going into this blind and had no true information to give them about what we would be doing.

Kids: What are we going to do?
Me: Build a robot.
Kids: How?
Me: I don't know.
Kids: What does the robot have to do?
Me: I don't know.
Kids: How long will it take?
Me: I don't know.
Kids: What else do we have to do?
Me: I don't know.
Kids: Awesome! Let's do it!

Seriously, I had no idea what all was involved. I had no idea what all it took to build a robot. I had no idea that you had to do other things in addition to building the robot.

What I had was an amazing group of kids who were willing to follow me on this adventure and were totally okay with all of us learning together.

Our motto this year: "We'll figure it out..."

2 comments:

Linnski's Physical Science said...

Totally cool! And adventuresome. I'm envious, and at the same time very glad for you. Not sure I would have felt like I could have gone ahead and done something like that.

Tracie Schroeder said...

If I have learned nothing in the past few years, it is to just go with it :) If you think it is a good idea, you might as well start now. Otherwise I tend to put it into a pile until I think I know enough about it to actually get it done. It's kind of like having kids. If you wait until you think you are ready, it will never happen!

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