What to do with 25 new GoPiGo3's with 6th graders

OK, this will be exciting. The kids have all been “trained” (as 5th graders) in Scratch 2.0 and 3.0 and have built a couple simple games from Scratch (so to speak!). My goal is to teach them how to do some text based programming (Python – as good as any) and deal with those pesky real world things like momentum, inertia, etc.

They know about functions, breaking down problems, organizing code, etc. – at least at a basic level. (They get beat on if they do "screw around’ coding. Nicely, of course.)

Wonder about how doing the “attach balloon & spike” thing and a giant 25 bot demolition derby would work. Have to keep the parents away. “Hey your kid’s balloon is too small. Cheater – you’ll hear from my attorney!”

Maybe a maze exiting contest? Any ideas? Want them to have some fun, but not at the expense of learning bad habits. Might even get them into some autonomous things. Just driving around is of no interest. They can all play games.

They’ve all seen the “hour of Code” type PR stuff. That and a dollar gets a ride on the bus. Want some things that are challenging that they can do, and be proud of.

BTW, our mayor is now into coding. Here’s his first program:

10 Print (“I am Mayor”)
20 goto 10

Still watching the output, I think.



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five five-bot relay teams
each team hasr to create a “startable” bot, three "wait till bumped, then drive till bump next bot (blind bump by distance) bots, and one “wait till bumped, then drive across finish line (extra hard: with time added for each inch beyond the finish line” bot. Detect bumps by seeing the encoders change (when waiting at relay position).

Excellent. Thx. Clever.


BTW @carl, my bot is Carl
Carl’s First Words

Been reading about him, Wish I was as smart! But I can find the fridge when I get hungry!


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It depends on sensors you may have added? The camera is a big winner with kids.
Drive to within 10 inches of something and take a photo. I’ve seen kids lying on the floor in all sorts of position in order to get the most amusing selfie.

And if you need a scientific twist you can always call it “is there life on Mars?”

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Great idea. Thx. Appreciate it. We’ll start in late August. Will be an experience. For sure.