Programs · Public Libraries

Kids Create: Robots in the Library

This week’s Kids Create was all about robots! We celebrated Digital Inclusion Week by hosting programs that ensure that all members of our community can access technology. This can include physical access and the skills to use it. So I used several of the robot kits available to our youth services staff and included it in my Kids Create series.

At first it was going to be all about playing with the different kinds of robots we have. We have several Ollie, Sphero, BB-8, and Ozobot robots. These all come with devices to control the robots. And while that was the main event, I also wanted to include some other creative aspects. We also wouldn’t have enough for everyone so I needed there to be other activities to do while they were waiting for their turn with a robot.

For playing with the Sphero, Ollie, and BB-8 robots, I set up an obstacle course. I wanted to create a barrier that would keep the robots in a specific area so I used a big collection of magazines that had just been donated to the library. Also a pool noodle. 😛 I put up very basic obstacles that the kids could steer their robots around and some small plastic bowling pins they could try to knock over. This was a big hit! Though we didn’t have enough robots for everyone, I had a wait list posted on the wall. They did a GREAT job taking turns when they were asked. And many got additional turns that wanted them.

 

                    

The other big station was playing with Ozobots. This area mostly ran itself once I got the kids going. There are lots of printable projects for these so I had some of those. But mostly kids just love drawing with markers and watching their robot respond.

At another station I posted pictures of several real robots that performed different tasks. I put out some basic craft supplies, foil, cardboard tubes and suggested they design their own robots. I asked them to think about what task their robot would perform, though mostly we were making silly looking robots.

                       

At the last minute, I was concerned there wouldn’t be enough to do for those waiting a turn so I made one last easy station: making binary bracelets with pipe cleaners and pony beads. This one didn’t get too much play simply because where was just enough to do for the just right amount of people that came to the program. 🙂 Isn’t it nice that it works out that way sometimes?

 

            

My instructional signage is available here for download.