‘Driving into the Future’ at QUT

This is a guest blog post by Jackie Child, Teacher Librarian from St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School. This post appeared first on tinkeringchild.com.

“Roboticists suggest that driverless cars could soon be driving on Australian roads if road legislations reform and technology matures. Developing systems to deal with inclement weather, improving sensing of pedestrians and bicycles, and less predictable elements are some of the issues that need to be addressed before we experience a driverless society.”

This was the preamble of the workshop our students attended at QUT. Here’s a video. It is part of the education program provided for schools. It is free and if you are in Brisbane ….it’s a must!! View workshop details.

Our girls proposed and programmed robotic solutions to develop driverless cars using a range of sensors and LEGO robotics. It was the first time for many girls. Leighann and Toby clearly and effectively guided the girls through coding and building their robots to move and use sensors …….. having heaps of fun while learning.

The girls had three challenges to complete with or without sensors. They soon worked out how to find the threshold value for the colour sensor and were able to program their robot to stay on dry land (pale green) to rescue the stranded vehicle.

Another challenge was using the ultrasonic sensor to read depth of light. The girls worked out how to stop the robot t the edge of the table first! Plenty of fun catching it before it fell off, take a look at this video 🙂

The communication tower at the top of Mt Coot-tha required fixing without falling off the mountain! The girls were so excited to see their robots toppling and dancing on the mountain!

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Throughout the day the girls enjoyed interacting with the Cube’s screen projects Dino Zoo, Chem World, Physics Observatory and The Arcade, I think the favourite was the Arcade which consisted of three retro inspired games including – Block Breakers, Parabola Pirates and Space Junk.

All girls agreed it was a FABULOUS day of fun and learning!

 

Big ideas abound at FIRST LEGO League 2015

On Saturday 21 November, over 500 children descended on The Cube to compete in this year’s FIRST® LEGO® League ‘Trash Trek’ challenge.

The Cube was abuzz with the excitement and passion of 31 school teams about to embark on the final leg of their Trash Trek challenge, the culmination of months of research, preparation and hard work.

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Our ‘Trash Trekkers’ were joined in spirit by over 233,000 children across 80 countries who were also participating in this year’s FIRST® LEGO® League Trash Trek challenge.

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We were lucky enough to have the Minister for Science and Innovation, Hon Leeanne Enoch, join us on the day to check out all the young innovators in action.

A big congratulations to the five teams who qualified for the national competition in Sydney: ATC Green Robros, iCode 22, Tech Wizards, Waskally Wilston Twash Twekers, and BSHS Cerise. Check out all winning teams below.

FLL15 Winners

No matter the outcome, all teams showed tremendous spirit, enthusiasm and tenacity, and all have a lot to be proud of. We hope to see many familiar faces back for the 2016 FIRST® LEGO® League.

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Thank you to everyone involved – our  volunteers, team coaches, parents and participants – your hard work, enthusiasm and gracious professionalism made the day one to remember!

The Cube would like to acknowledge the support of the QUT Faculty of Education, QUT Caboolture and Grace Lutheran College.

Want to see more? Find out what it’s really like to compete in FIRST® LEGO® League thanks to Nick Houghton, Leader of Pedagogy at Holy Family Primary School in Skennars Head, and his two 2015 FIRST® LEGO® League Grant-winning teams, iCode 21 and iCode 22. Following the teams’ journey from in-school preparation and training, to participating at QUT The Cube on the day, the video is a must-see for any schools or community groups considering becoming a part of FIRST® LEGO® League in 2016.

Holy Family Primary Schools’ FIRST® LEGO® League video can be viewed here.

Images by Kate O’Sullivan.