Robotics workshops and teams on Kauai
KRA Robotics Workshops
In the summer of 2014, KRA began to offer half-day workshops in which Kaua`ibots team members teach other students of all ages to build and drive small robots (which they could keep). The first set of classes were very popular, and planning is now underway for more - watch this space for announcements.
The Kaua`ibots, FIRST Robotics Competition team 2465, is an all-island team that builds large, powerful robots that are both human-driven and self-controlled. Each January a new game is announced and teams have 6 weeks to design and build that year's robot, which is done at the Robotics Workshop at Kukui Grove and at Island School. The team competes in the FRC Hawaii Rehional Tournament at the Stan Sherriff Center at UH Manoa in March, and is now planning to add a mainland tournament if funds permit. Students can learn a great deal of mechanical, electrical, computer and systems engineering, computer-aided drafting, game scouting and strategy, problem-solving techniques, and business skills working alongside adult mentors - and only students are allowed to actually drive the robots.
Middle school students can work and learn with the Kaua`ibots FRC team (see below). While there are some things they can't do until they're in high school, there are many more that they can, and anyone who starts with the team this early will be ahead of the game when they do reach high school.
Each summer this program offers several 1-week science/engineering workshops for middle school students; often these include a robotics class. Click the link above to see a description of the 2014 Kids College offerings.
Most of our elementary schools have FIRST Lego League teams. These kids build a self-driving robot, based on Lego pieces, in the context of solving a real-world problem such as cleaning up pollution or inventing devices to help older people. Their competition includes researching the problem and giving a presentation on their solution as well as the robot events.
Inventing With Electronics and Software
In these classes, students design, build, and program both standard, and their own, electronics programs based on an Arduino. Projects don't have to invlve robots but they often do, and what you learn is directly applicable to working with robots. The level of the class is suitable for high school students, adults, and some middle school students. It's been offered on a series of Saturdays in the summer by Kauai Innovation Labs. Here is a detailed description of the first session.