In this course, students will explore the emerging science of robot mechanics as they build and program their robot from scratch, remotely control it, experiment with light and pressure sensors, create drive trains for varying terrains, and play robotic sports.
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Students will use the new VEX5 robotics platform, the world’s premier classroom robotics platform. We will begin by building a chassis - a stable structure to provide physical support and like a skeleton. This chassis holds everything in place and is the building block from which other systems can be added. Next, we will mount motors to the chassis and add wheels and gears to complete the drive system so our robot can move as we learn about speed and torque. We will conclude the week with a fully functioning robot that we have programmed to overcome obstacles and defeat challenges at our command.
As we build and program our robots, we will explore electrical circuits and built power (batteries) as well as communications systems (radio controller) for our robots. As we employ design thinking we will learn about the engineering process to brainstorm, design, construct, test, and redesign as we used our robots to solve problems. Finally, we will enhance our robots with sensors, robotic arms, and programming as we test their capabilities in several early challenges, including terrain challenge and a transportation challenge! Our week will culminate in a finale presentation challenge of designing a robotics sports competition!
Enrichment Activities: In addition to classtime, afternoons and evenings give campers the opportunity for informal science learning, as well as leadership and problem-solving training through workshops, experiments, guest speakers, and recreational activities. Students will also attend a mid-program excursion to a local science venue.
Camps for rising 8th - 9th graders have three price options:
- Day Camper: Day Campers check in Sunday with dinner provided after check-in and then enjoy curriculum Monday-Friday from 9am to 5pm. Meals are not provided with Day Camp Tuition - campers can bring a sack lunch or can purchase our optional Lunch package for $40 (includes lunch in the dining hall Monday-Friday).
- Extended Day: Extended Day Campers check in Sunday with dinner provided after check-in and then enjoy curriculum and recreation Monday - Friday from 9am to 9pm, with lunch and dinner provided in the dining hall.
- Overnight: Overnight campers check in before dinner on Sunday and check out at 5pm on Friday. All meals and shared dorm accommodations are provided.
|Program||Grades||Location||Start Date||End Date||Price Options||Register|
Sample Schedule Science Camps for Girls
|7:30 am||Overnight campers - wake up!|
|8:00 am||Breakfast in the dining hall (overnight campers)|
|9-9:15 am||Extended day camper check-in|
|9:00 am||Camp meeting & warm up|
|9:15 am||"Major" lab session
Options may vary by camp session & include:
engineering, marine science, astronomy, & robotics
|12:00 pm||Lunch in the dining hall (included for overnight & extended day campers;
day campers can purchase an optional lunch package or bring a lunch)
|2:00 pm||Science "minors" plus workshops
Afternoon workshops give girls an opportunity for informal science learning,
as well as leadership and problem-solving training. Past minors have included forensic science and chemistry.
|5:00 pm||Day camper check-out|
|5:30 pm||Dinner in the dining hall (overnight & extended campers)|
|6:30 pm||Team leadership & project planning class|
|7:45 pm||Evening recreation & activities|
|8-9:00 pm||Extended day camper check-out|
|9:30 pm||Floor check (overnight campers get ready for bed)|
|10:00 pm||Room check & lights out|
Education Unlimited believes in small-group, immersive learning with subject matter experts and experienced teachers. We strive to provide industry-leading instruction to all of our students and hold all staff to the highest possible standards. Staff assignments vary by program and location. Some of our recent staff members for this program include:
Rhonda McCoy, PhD - Camp Director
Dr. Rhonda McCoy is a Manager of Quality Control for a leading global biopharmaceutical company. Through analysis of quality from creation to post-expiration date, Dr. McCoy oversees a team that ensures medications sold around the world are both safe and effective. Dr. McCoy holds a PhD in Chemistry from Howard University in Washington DC. A member of the Education Unlimited team since 2005, Dr. McCoy has been passionate about the empowerment of middle and high school age girls throughout her career, evident in her work as Director of our Science and Engineering Camps for Girls. She has volunteered her time as the scholarship program chair for Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and taught chemistry and physics in the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools of Charlotte, North Carolina.
In addition to her doctorate degree, Dr. McCoy has a Bachelor of Science degree from North Carolina A&T State University. Prior to her five years as a research assistant at Howard while pursuing her doctorate, she spent time as an analytical chemist with the global cosmetics brand, L’Oreal. In her free time, Rhonda enjoys travel, shopping, and time with her family.
Gladys Velez Caicedo - Instructor
Gladys Velez Caicedo is a technical instructor in the Department of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). A graduate of Columbia University in New York City, Gladys holds a Bachelor of Science degree in astronomy & physics. Gladys has conducted high energy particle astrophysics at various labs around the world, such as Nevis Laboratories and as part of the VERITAS collaboration. Gladys developed a passion for high school education during her college years. While at Columbia, she established the Columbia Education Studies Program in 2011, designed to give high school students wide-range access to university education.
Gladys joined the Education Unlimited team in 2017. She developed the curriculum for the astrophysics summer camp program, offered as of summer 2018.
Thomas Harper - Instructor
Thomas Harper is a robotics enthusiast currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical and Human Factors Engineering at Tufts University. His passion for robotics started at a young age. In addition to being president of the robotics and 3D printing club at The Head Royce School in the San Francisco Bay Area, Thomas turned his love of robotics into a business. Close to 10 years ago, he co-founded a company that teaches VEX robotics to middle and high school students. He looks forward to bringing his expertise and knowledge to Education Unlimited.