August 1, 2011.
Children are become more and more web savvy, and less prone to reading textbooks or sitting and listening intently to a lecturing teacher. As part of the education branch of NASA Ames, the Robotics Alliance Project provides students with the opportunity to engage with technology. The NASA Robot Project is an online curriculum website for the Robotic Alliance Project. The NASA Robot Project is designed to provide both a linear curriculum and non-linear array of supporting materials. The purpose for the curriculum is to teach students how to build robots and program them. The robots are built from kits provided by Botball for use in its robotics competition. The robots are programmed in C, which will provide students with an exposure to procedural programming and the C language itself. The course includes how to build the robot, how to write programs, how to download programs onto the robot, and how to run the programs on the robots. Topics covered are motor control, logic, branches and loops, and sensors. The site also includes supplemental information such as problem solving strategies, programming practices, tips for construction, as well as some troubleshooting. The site is designed to be modified in response to student needs, and incorporates a comment feature to elicit feedback.
NASA Ames Research Center (ARC)
This material is based upon work supported by the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation and by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0952013. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation or the National Science Foundation.