Tuesday, June 22, 2010

End of Phase 1


The judges decision has been announced and the Molokai Mahina MoonBot team did not advance to Phase 2. We did our best work and I am really proud of the team. We are going to meet and figure out what our teams plan is for the rest of the summer. Hopefully we can find a way to put our hard work to good use! We will keep blogging until we are finished so keep checking back!

~Jenn


This is a picture from our team building trip to the ice cream store! Thanks for the Icee Floats Aunty Kim!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Patiently waiting....

We are still patiently waiting to hear the results from Phase 1 of the MoonBots competition...we are all very anxious to see which teams advance. We met today to keep working on our programming and had a few successes with collecting the water ice elements. We decided on a plan of attack for the mission, and that figured that collecting the Water Ice elements would be the most difficult so we wanted to tackle that first. Here is a video of our progress with that...



video

Over the past few weeks during the judging process our team has had plenty of time to reflect on our thoughts of this competition so far. When we first started this the students were really upset that I wasn't doing everything for them, I explained that it was part of the learning process, and even if it took longer or more attempts for them to complete the project at least they could say THEY did it, they weren't thrilled with the whole idea, especially since there were a LOT of 'banging their heads on the wall' moments, but today they finally admitted, even if we don't advance at least we learned a lot of neat new things! So from a coaches point of view, whether we advance or not, I think the Molokai Mahina MoonBot team was a success. I definitely think that the kids who participated in our MoonBots team gained a greater understanding of the moon and lunar exploration. They are even coming to class saying things like "Oh guess what, they found more water on the moon!" or "Check out these 7th graders who discovered something on mars"...and are really excited about it. Their experience on the team will also help them if they pursue robotics competitions in the future. One of our students has never programmed a robot before and spent the day today helping to create the successful water collecting program we used in the previous video!

One downside to this competition is that if we dont advance we are not going to be able to complete the mission on our own like we had planned. The mission challenge board requires wayyyyyyy more LEGO pieces then we have in our whole school, MAYBE on our entire island! We are still thinking of a way that we can test our robot so all of our hardwork is utilized at least to some extent.

Mahalo for following our blog this far keep checking back to hear the results of the Phase 1 portion of the competition... the judges said "on or before June 21st" so technically that gives them another roughly 8.5 hours if they are in Hawaii. (Im pretty sure they are in California somewhere because all of the time deadlines have been pacific time, so that gives them less than 5.5 more hours!) Until then, keep your fingers crossed for our team, we worked really hard and definitely deserve to make the top 20!!

a hui hou!

Jenn

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Less than 24 hours now....

Tomorrow is the first day of Phase 2, and also the judges deadline for announcing the top 20 MoonBot teams in the world!! We are anxiously awaiting their decision and as soon as we hear it we will post it on here!! We have our fingers crossed that they will see all the hard work we put into this project and time we spent to get it juuuuuuuust right. :)

Check back for the results of Phase 1 tomorrow!!!

A hui hou!
~Jenn

Monday, June 14, 2010

Molokai Mahina MoonBot Team MashUps and Improvements!

The team decided that since we got called out for having a creative theme song by one of the judges, that we would show them just how creative we can be and put together a Molokai Mahina MoonBot team mashup of songs!! We arent ready to post it yet, but it does include some pretty awesome songs and A LOT of creativity, so check back!! :)

Today we are also working on finishing up our robot, we found some treads that fit perfectly on our newly improved larger tires. This is extra exciting for us because the larger tires worked great over the craters but were not very sturdy- we decided to put two tires on each axle and then the tread on the outside. So far so good! We even got extra creative and turned the treads inside out because the design was better for climbing the crater wall!

Here is a video of our newly improved tires- up close!

video

Here is the view from our Molokai Mahina MoonBot Monster! :)

video

Here is what our Robot looks like when it is going over the craters- its a pretty bumpy ride, but a HUGE improvement over what it used to look like!!




video

Saturday, June 12, 2010

So much going on!

Today the Molokai Mahina team is meeting for 8 hours so we can stay caught up on our project! It makes for a long day, but we are having so much fun we barely notice! :) Here is what we are up to...

1. We decided to take a crack at building the landing ramp so we can work on getting the robot on and off of that, unfortunately we cannot complete this because we do not have the appropriate LEGO pieces. Awa and Moriah gave it their best shot, but it just wouldn't work.


2. After our last class where our robot fell to pieces we have been working on rebuilding it more sturdy and attractive! Here are Michael and Alex, working hard to build!
3. We have been working on programming a trial run so we can test out our new and improved Robot! Everytime we test it we are able to make additional improvements on it! Here are Erik and Michael during a test run!

We also had a team building trip to the local ice cream store for some Icee Floats (Thank you Aunty Kim!!) and a team pep talk which was very encouraging! Check back for pictures! Then we came back to our NEW classroom and had lunch and a dance party (hey we had to burn off all that energy from the ice cream some how!) to our favorite GLEE songs.

video

Thanks for reading our blog, we are meeting two more times next week and are patiently waiting for the judges decision on the TOP 20 teams!!

Check back next week for more fun stuff from the Molokai Mahina MoonBots Team! :)

~Jenn

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

We Like to MoonBot, MoonBot!!

Check this out!!

This isnt an official competition website, but it is a website of one of the main sponsors!!! This was also posted on their facebook group page!!

Yay for The Molokai Mahina MoonBot Team!! We will find out June 21st if we advance to Phase 2!! :)

http://thelaunchpad.xprize.org/2010/06/moonbots-teams-really-went-far-out.html

a hui hou!
Jenn

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Up and running...sort of

We started meeting again today after our much deserved break! We decided that we were going to continue working on our robot and programming so that when we advance to Phase 2 we will not have wasted any time!

When we were trying to make our digital design of our robot for phase 1 we quickly put a model together, it wasn't as sturdy or as aesthetically pleasing as we would have liked, but it allowed us test out whether or not our design would be able to complete the mission. During our initial test runs our robot had no issues climbing up and over the ridges/craters. Today when we did a follow up test run our robot had quite a few problems, the main one being that it wasn't sturdy enough to handle the roughness of the course.

Here is a video clip of our robot just before it fell apart after a few test runs.

video

We will be spending the rest of the class rebuilding a sturdier robot. :)

Next class we will continue rebuilding until we can successfully make it up and over the craters and ridges.

Thanks for checking out our blog!

~Jenn

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Aaaaand we're back! :)

So after working so hard the past two weeks, we took this weekend off to relax and catch up on sleep! It was nice and relaxing, but now our weekend is over and its back to work!

Right now we are just waiting, and its killing us!!! Im really hoping that the judges give updates each week as to what the status is of the judging... 24 days is a long time to wait when your teams future is on the line!

Since we are just waiting I have been checking out a lot of the other blogs/videos/and robot designs. It appears that several teams may not have made the deadline just based on teams that do not have their videos posted to their teams homepage. It seems like a lot of teams had a very difficult part with the digital design of the robot, I suppose that is to be expected since it is not a requirement of FLL (which most of the teams on MoonBots are also a part of) and most people do not have experience with it. I think the C.A.D. (computer aided design/computer assisted design/computer assisted drafting, basically it is the process of planning and drawing structures or machines before actually building them) experience is great for our team, especially those students who decide to take the C.A.D. class offered next year! I have a lot of experience with CAD and think that having knowledge in it can offer endless opportunities for its users. It was really fun to see the kids learning how to use it on their own, and while I was there to mentor them if they really got stuck, they basically learned and executed (properly!) Google Sketchup in less than 2 weeks! :)

Im not sure how the judges are going to announce the 20 finalists; if they are going to email the coaches, post it to the website, etc. but as soon as I know I will post it here! Whether we made it or not we worked our okole's off and are proud of ourselves! :)

Thanks for your support! Keep checking back!!

Jenn