Summer Camp with Hushan Elementary School

1. Our Goal

(1) Develop kids’ logical thinking and problem-solving skills with easy courses.

(2) Increase their interest in science, technology, and promote them to explore on their own after the camp.

(3) Promote STEM education to younger kids all over Taiwan.

2. Our Courses

We divided the kids into 2 groups that have different courses. The students in Basic Courses are mostly kids without coding experience or kids at a younger age, while the students in Advanced Courses are kids with some basic coding experience.

Basic Courses

Basic Courses consists of 5 courses, which are “Design Your Own Chatbot!”, “Game Designer - Design Arcade
Games with Scratch!”, “Ready, steady, go! Design a kinetic car,” “I'm a designer! Design 3D Graphics with Tinkercad” and “Hunt for the treasure—Coding Ocean”. These courses are easier for the kids to learn and can develop their critical thinking.

(1) I'm a designer! Design 3D Graphics with Tinkercad

Tinkercad is a free, easy-to-use app for 3D design, electronics, and coding. It has an easy-to-learn interface so kids can get started with ease. They learned the basic functions of the website and drew their own 3D graphics! They then shared their works and ideas with others.

(2) Design Your Own Chatbot!

Chatfuel is a simple-to-use program that helps kids build a no-code chatbot. We designed some lessons for them to learn the basic functions of Chatfuel and make the kids build their own chatbot using their creative imaginations and ideas. We then let them share their chatbots with others.

(3) Hunt for the treasure--Coding Ocean

Coding Ocean is a board game that makes kids know how a program works, including for loop, pausing, moving forward or backward, and turning right or left. With those cards, kids are able to learn programming logic without coding or even without computers.

(4) Game Designer - Design Arcade Games with Scratch!

Scratch is a block-based visual programming language and website targeted primarily at children 8-16 as an educational tool for coding. In this course, students learned the basic functions of Scratch from an arcade soccer game. After learning the basics, the coders programmed their own goalkeeper to increase the difficulty of the game!

(5) Ready, steady, go! Design a kinetic car

We inspire kids’ mechanical thinking with a kinetic car by using common materials in our daily lives. By using those components which are easy to approach, kids are able to make their own robot whenever they want!

Advanced Courses

In Advanced Courses, we mainly taught the kids how to build their own LEGO Mindstorm EV3 Robots. Kids learned from just an easy Ferris Wheel and then ended up in a complex Sumo Robot.

(1) Ferris Wheel

Ferris Wheel is the first project in the course. Kids can learn how to read the manual and gets familiar with EV3 components.

(2) Piranha Plant Robot

Piranha Plant Robot is a project in which kids can learn how to use sensors and design programs that scan for fingers approach.

(3) Line Following Robot

Line Following Robot is the project of the color sensor. With the color sensor, kids are able to build a robot that would turn right if the left sensor does not detect black lines.

(4) Sumo Robot

Sumo Robot uses some technique that is quite similar to the line following robot, which builds a robot that stays in a sumo field and tries to push the opponent out if possible.

3. Events in between courses

(1) Introduction of our team

We introduced our team and what we do. We also introduced FIRST and the goals they want us to achieve, also sharing some clips about the competition.

(2) Guess the code- Learning the importance of communication and cooperation

This was an easy game to play. Four people sat in a line. The person in the back would get a code and pass the code from the last person to the first without speaking. Then the person in the front would have to guess the code. As the code got more complicated, the group needed to look for a better way to communicate by only using their hands. This game let them know the importance of communication and cooperation.

(3) What are robots?

What are robots? Robots are now everywhere in our lives, and they make our lives more convenient. We shared some robots designed by Boston Dynamics, including Spot, Atlas and more. We also introduced different kinds of robots and how they change our lives.

4. Kids' and parents' feedback

After the camp ended, we had some feedback from the school. The kids think the camp is fun and learned some knowledge and skills from it. They also think that we are humorous and full of passion, hoping us to hold a camp again next year. We are grateful to hear this and we hope that we can have a chance to host it again!

(1) Basic Courses:

The kids enjoyed Scratch programming because they can get fantastic results with simple blocks drawing. Without the need for codes, they can design their own arcade game with our courses. Next, chatbot courses are also quite unforgettable to those kids. Chatbot often appears in our daily lives, however, we do not have many chances to write our own one. By taking the chatbot course, kids are able to design their own chatbot with Chatfuel. By typing simple commands, it could have a variety of usage which is determined by kids!

(2) Advanced Courses:

In advanced LEGO EV3 courses, most kids delight in the line following course for a few main reasons. First, they can design their own robot with everything that comes up in their mind. No matter how their design seems impossible, once they have an idea, we would try to help them turn their design into reality. This action inspires kids’ imagination, but they can still build a real robot if we help them brainstorm a design within realistic considerations. Furthermore, the time to combine all components into a line following car is fantastic as well. Because we use LEGO EV3, those kids could build a robot easily without any complex tools or experiences. Moreover, EV3 blocks let kids program in an easier way. Without codes, they could have their own program in a brief time. At last, we held a little competition. However, we do encourage kids to help other’s robots in order to deliver Coopertition® to society.