We had another wonderful day and the weather was great as well. We were able to view the sun today through the clear sky thanks to Dr. Knauer bringing over his telescope during lunch. We got out on campus and walked to the Minining and Mineral Resources Building for this viewing.
For our daily presentation Dr. Christa Jackson worked on spatial reasoning through several activities. She had the students blindly draw pictures based on their partner’s directions, make a 3-dimensional object from several 2-dimensional pictures, and design a bridge out of limited materials and describe their design to their classmates. We had lots of great bridge designs out of straws and pipe cleaners.
In LEGO the students worked on the first three challenges for the Green City board. This involved closing a dam and also raising a new clean energy smoke stack. The students had to build upon their previous days work to program the robot to complete all of these tasks.
Tomorrow robotics will get more difficult in terms of challenges. The students will have to navigate around objects in order to complete their tasks. Dr. Robin Cooper from the Biology Department will be presenting on neurobiology in crayfish. The students will be visiting his lab and working with his graduate students tomorrow. We’ll be sure to take a lot of pictures!
We had another fun, enjoyable day today. The weather was much better and we had a great presentation from Dr. Bruce Walcott in the College of Engineering. The students worked on engineering design and worked in pairs to build motors. He finished his session off with a trip to the Environmental Engineering building and a tour of some of its neat features. I am jealous as I haven’t been able to get over there myself!
In robotics the students worked on programming the robot to move forward in the “close shave” challenge in which then need to shave a lego placed at a given distance. They also programmed for the maze in which the robot must follow a maze to end up in a box. The challenge is they must program it forward and backward.
The weather forecast looks good for tomorrow at noon, so we are trying to work in a short visit to the observatory for a daytime viewing. Dr. Christa Jackson will be working with the students tomorrow on 3-dimensional figures and spatial reasoning. She does a great job of transitioning between 2-dimensional drawings and 3-dimensional models. In robotics they will be starting the Green City Challenge. They will take all they have learned and program the robot to complete many challenges on the board. Each has a point value and it will culminate in a competition on Friday.
What a wonderful first day! We were excited to see everyone and we had a great time working with LEGO robotics and exploring some astronomy. The students built a spectrometer with Dr. Tim Knauer, Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. One group was able to visit the observatory, but it was raining during the other session so we had to adjust our plans. In robotics they learned the basics of building and programming the robot. Tomorrow they will delve into some more difficult programming challenges like following a determined path on the mat.
We are pleased to invite your student to participate in the See Blue Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Camp June 11 – 15, 2012 at the University of Kentucky. The week-long day camp is designed to help students explore and integrate the STEM disciplines through hands-on projects and real world applications.
Dates: June 11 – 15, 2012
Ages: All students entering 6th – 9th grades for the 2012-2013 school year
Where: University of Kentucky, Mining and Mineral Resources Building
Activities: Instruction in engineering, mathematics, neurobiology, astronomy, and LEGO robotics. There will be a robotics competition on the final day.