Building the future with Te Manawa’s Robotics
‘‘Thursday Night Robots’’ is Te Manawa’s new after school robotics programme. It uses Vex Robotics’ IQ system to present design challenges for Years 6-8. Vex robots are built from a range of Lego-like pieces; snap a few together and it’s not long until you’re in business. The programme runs for seven weeks, each workshop building on skills acquired in the last, as teams build a robot and refine it week to week. Although two sessions have passed, it’s not too late to join in; the easy-to-grasp assembly and iterative design process can be picked up very quickly.
‘‘Even for those who have never played with robots before, this is an introduction to the principles of robotic design and building,’’ says Te Manawa’s Kelly Gay.
The Te Manawa school holiday programme featured robotics classes that saw robots racing through obstacle courses and battling one another for supremacy. Expect to tune Thursday’s robots for similar challenges. The programme will also involve learning elements of writing a code, since once you’ve built the robot you then have to tell it what to do! Te Manawa’s educators are working with the Central Robotics Trust and other groups to make the museum a hub for robotics. Thursday Night Robots runs every week until December 1, from 3.30 to 5.30pm. Cost is $20 per workshop.