Petoi Robotics Education: Best Practices with University of Colorado Boulder Summer Robotics/STEM Camp

On Oct 6th 23, Petoi hosted a virtual session on robotics education & best practices. The session was hosted by Wayne Seltzer, a featured Petoi robotics educator and esteemed teacher from the University of Colorado Boulder, Rongzhong Li, Petoi founder & CEO and a group of STEM/robotics educators.

 

Wayne shared his valuable insights and experiences in utilizing Petoi's Bittle robot dogs to Explore Computer Science and Robotics STEM Academy(Grades 9-12) by Colorado University Boulder and designing the course:  

Diving a little bit into the program: The Science Discovery Program offered a week-long Robotics Engineering Academy for high school students. Each participant received a Petoi Bittle which they built, programmed, and took home with them. The students really enjoyed creating poses and gaits for their quadrupeds and developed interesting programs with sophisticated behaviors. Our observation is that the organic nature of robots with legs is much more engaging than wheels.

Here are some of the Details:

  • Each high school student assembled and configured his/her own Bittle as the class had an emphasis on hands-on physical computing. Each student took Bittle home after the camp was finished as the camp fees covered Bittle's cost.
  • Students engaged with Bittle more than other forms of robots because Bittle is in a dog form.  Natively, students knew more about general dog movement and liked to emulate those movements on the Bittle. 
  • Students liked to use the Skill Composer to create new interesting and skills.
  • The class used Petoi Coding Blocks for the coding part.  Petoi Coding Blocks automatically generate Python codes, so it was easier to explain things both in terms of Block-based coding and Python coding.
  • Students seemed to be more willing to share their own recordings on social media than being filmed by the camp.
  • Students were encouraged to take Bittle home and do more tinkering by themselves every night.
  • Because Bittle supports NyBoard which is Arduino compatible, he would have been able to do some classes on IoT if the camp wasn't just one week long.

During the session, Rongzhong shared a few updates to Petoi's C++ and Petoi Coding Blocks curriculum and how he taught undergraduate students with Bittle at university robotics camps.

Petoi resources pageIf you are interested in learning how to adopt Petoi robots for STEM/robotics education, please get in touch for more information and next steps!

Happy Learning!

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