Our school was awarded a 2010-2011 Toyota Tapestry Large Grant Award to integrate science and literature. As a result of our grant, we are partnering with robotics amateurs and professionals around our state to implement a robotics-based engineering component to the 5th grade force and motion curriculum. In addition, students will complete a science-fiction unit in reading where they read "robot fiction" books. As critical readers, they will apply their knowledge of robotics and engineering while they read and attempt to understand what parts of the books might be grounded in fact versus the parts grounded in fiction. Finally, all students participating in the project will write an original piece of "robot fiction" to be compiled into a class anthology and published using a print-on-demand publisher. Each participant will receive a copy of their class anthology to read and treasure for years to come.
The fifth grade and 4/5 combo class published an original science fiction book as the final piece of our Toyota Tapestry grant project. Every student in the 5th grade and 4/5 combo class was able to take home their own hardbound copy paid for through the grant funds. To celebrate, we held a book signing party in the media center on June 8, 2011.
Robot Rumble, April 16, 2011
Students from our school exhibited at the North Carolina Museum of Life and Science Robot Rumble on Saturday, April 16, 2011. We used robotics to demonstrate principles of force and motion and we conducted "Robot Read-Alouds" for the youngest engineers.
Robot Camp, 2011
Students put all the robots together for an end-of-the-day 'Battle Royale' to see who would reign supreme.
On February 25, volunteers from the Triangle Amateur Robotics Society joined 18 fourth and fifth graders for our second Robot Camp in SY2010-2011. Students began the day building towers using only spaghetti and mini-marshmallows. By the end of the day, they had created, tested, programmed and battled their “sumo” robot creations.
Robot Camp, 2010
Students work with James Fayson, coach of Team Heat, to develop their sumo bot.
We held our first Robot Camp on October 23, 2010. Thank you to Team Heat from Raleigh who assisted our students with the robot challenges that day. Nineteen students (nearly all of the pilot class!) came to school on a beautiful Saturday for a day filled with intense problem-solving and SUMO fun!